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Mental Health is a priority throughout the world, and due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it has come even more so to the forefront around the globe. On World Mental Health Day this year, the MHFA is organising an International World Mental Health Day Summit, where you will have the opportunity to hear from, and interact with leading researchers and professionals within the mental health sector. 

1 hour of attendance = 1 CPD point.



Emeritus Professor Bruce J. Tonge   

Prior to his retirement in 2012, he was the Foundation Head, School of Psychology and Psychiatry and Head of the Discipline of Psychological Medicine at Monash University and also the Senior Clinical Advisor of the Mental Health Program of Monash Health at Monash Medical Centre in Melbourne, Australia.  He has a distinguished record of clinical work, teaching and research in child psychiatry. 

He established the internationally recognised Monash University Centre for Developmental Psychiatry and Psychology. He continues to have clinical, research and teaching interests in the area of developmental psychiatry with a particular focus in the areas of Autism Spectrum Disorders and behavioural and emotional disturbance in children and adolescents with intellectual disability and neurodevelopmental disorders, parent education and skills training public mental health interventions, and treatment outcome studies in childhood anxiety and depressive disorders.



Vasan Srinivasan  

Mr Vasan Srinivasan, is currently Chairperson of Mental Health Foundation Australia. He has pioneered many new ventures at the MHFA such as National Mental Health Month, and he strongly believes in the power of community and supporting community. Vasan has been involved in mental health in the community in a voluntary position for many years, before being appointed as Vice-Chairperson and now Chairperson of Mental Health Foundation Australia. Vasan is also the first Indian to be appointed on the Australian Multicultural Council and is also Chair of the Confederation of Indian Associations of Australia as well as Patron of the Australia India Business Council.















Professor Jayashri Kulkarni AM   


Prof Kulkarni became a Fellow of the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists in 1989 and was awarded a PhD from Monash University in 1997 for her thesis “Women and Psychosis”. She is internationally acknowledged as a leader in the field of reproductive hormones and their impact on mental health. Prof?Kulkarni was elected the President of the International Association of Women’s Mental Health in 2017. 



Dr Shalini Arunogiri     


Dr Shalini Arunogiri is a consultant addiction psychiatrist and clinician researcher. She is Deputy Clinical Director at Turning Point and Deputy Head of the Department of Psychiatry at Central Clinical School, Monash University. Shalini is Chair of the RANZCP Binational Faculty of Addiction Psychiatry.Her clinical and research interests include co-existing trauma and substance use, and women’s health and addictive disorders.  Dr Arunogiri is an investigator on multiple Australian clinical trials of medication treatments for addiction, including the N-ICE and LiMA trials for methamphetamine use disorder. She is also mum to an energetic five year-old boy and a passionate advocate for women in medicine and academia.

Topics covered:

Women: Social, cultural, and political issues 












Prof. Louise Newman   

Professor Newman has qualifications in Psychology, Infant and Parent Interventions and Child Psychiatry. She specialises in Perinatal and Infant Mental Health and consults to Child Protection and early childhood services.She is Professorial Fellow of The University of Melbourne and leads a research program in Parent-Infant Therapy. She co-ordinates training in Perinatal Psychiatry and Psycho Dynamic Psychiatry.?Professor Newman is an experienced teacher in these areas and trains a variety of professional groups in early intervention approaches. 

Topics Covered: 

Women: Perinatal, social, cultural, and political issues 












Professor Sharon Goldfeld  

Professor Sharon Goldfeld is a paediatrician, public health physician, Theme Director Population Health and Co-Group Leader of Policy and Equity at the Murdoch Children's Research Institute and Director of the Centre for Community Child Health at The Royal Children's Hospital Melbourne. She has built a career as a policy-focused public health and paediatric practitioner and researcher. Her research interests are made up of complementary, synergistic and cross-disciplinary streams of work focused on investigating, testing and translating sustainable policy relevant solutions that eliminate inequities for Australia’s children. During the 2020 second COVID-19 wave in Victoria she was sought out to analyse the school transmission data for the Victoria Department of Health and Human Services. This report led to children being able to return to school; probably the single most important intervention for children. Sharon was recently awarded the inaugural Marles Medal for excellent and original research that led to outstanding achievement in research impact.

 Topic covered:

 Participation in Education











Professor Helen Milroy    

Prof. Helen Milroy is a descendant of the Palyku people of the Pilbara region of Western Australia but was born and educated in Perth. She studied Medicine at the University of Western Australia, worked as a General Practitioner and Consultant in Childhood Sexual Abuse at Princess Margaret Hospital for children for several years before completing specialist training in Child and Adolescent psychiatry. Helen is currently the Perth Children's Hospital Foundation Professor of Child and Adolescent psychiatry; Commissioner with the National Mental Health Commission; Co-chair of the Million Minds Medical Research Advisory Group and Honorary Research Fellow with the Telethon Kids Institute. From 2013-2017 Helen was a Commissioner on the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. In 2019 Helen was appointed as a Commissioner with the Australian Football league.










Professor Matthew Sanders     

Prof. Matthew Sanders is a Professor of Clinical Psychology and Director of the Parenting and Family Support Centre at the University of Queensland. He has been a consulting Professor at The University of Manchester, a visiting Professor at the University of South Carolina, and has held adjunct Professorships at Glasgow Caledonian University and The University of Auckland. As the founder of the Triple P-Positive Parenting Program, Professor Sanders is considered a world leader in the development, implementation, evaluation and dissemination of population-based approaches to parenting and family interventions. Triple P is currently in use in 35 countries worldwide. Professor Sanders’ work has been widely recognised by his peers as reflected a number of prestigious awardsHe also received a Queensland Greats Award from the Queensland Government in 2018. 

Topics covered:

The Family











Associate Professor Caroline Bell     

Caroline Bell is an Associate Professor at the Department of Psychological Medicine, University of Otago. After the earthquakes Caroline was the clinical lead managing the psychological responses and input to the community post the disaster. She also set up and led a specialist service treating people with severe post traumatic earthquake related distress. She is continuing to study the psychological and neurobiological effects of the earthquakes in both people presenting with significant earthquake related distress and those identifying as resilient.











Professor Brett McDermott     

Professor Brett McDermott is a medical graduate from the University of Tasmania who trained in psychiatry in the UK and Sydney and holds clinical qualifications in child, adolescent, and adult psychiatry. Professor McDermott has had numerous national appointments (Member National Mental Health Service Planning Framework Expert Panel; Member NHMRC PTSD Guideline Editorial and Advisory Committee; Member Federal Government Mental Health Expert Reference Group; Chair NHMRC-BeyondBlue Youth Depression Clinical Practice Guidelines; Director BeyondBlue, the Australian National Depression Initiative (2006-2016). International appointments include visiting Professorships in Malaysia and China (Shanxi University, Shanxi Medical University and Taiyuan Hospital) and a By-Fellow at Churchill College,Cambridge University, UK. His research interests include mental service development, PTSD and stress,and adolescent depression; and has published over 100 journal articles and book chapters on these topics.

Topics covered:

The Community












 Associate Professor Mahesh Jayaram 

A/Prof Mahesh Jayaram is the Director of Teaching and Learning at the Department of Psychiatry, University of Melbourne and Consultant Psychiatrist at Melbourne Health. He coordinates the Australia’s largest Master of Psychiatry program. His research interests include systematic reviews and meta-analyses for treatment of schizophrenia. In this role he is the coordinating editor for Cochrane Schizophrenia and has authored and edited numerous Cochrane reviews. He is Chief Investigator on many trials, obtained over $ 3.5 million in research funding, authored 44 peer reviewed publications and 4 book chapters. His recent research interests include neurological, neuropsychiatric, and intergenerational impacts of COVID-19 as well as Long COVID symptoms.  






Professor Stefan Leucht   

Prof. Leucht studied medicine in Munich, Germany, Cape Town, South Africa, Alicante Spain, and Atlanta, USA. He is head of the Section of Evidence-Based Medicine in Psychiatry and Psychotherapy at the Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy of the Technical University of Munich, Germany, where he has practiced since 1994 and now runs the “Section Evidence-Based Medicine in Psychiatry and Psychotherapy”. He worked as a research associate at the Zucker Hillside Hospital, in New York in 2002/2003. He spent a year as honorary fellow at the University Department of Psychiatry in Oxford, he held a position of honorary professor of Evidence-based Psychopharmacology at the University of Aarhus, Denmark until 2019 and he is currently visiting professor at the Institute of Psychiatry, King’s College London and at Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine, Shanghai, China. He is part of the editorial teams of several psychiatric journals, including the Cochrane Schizophrenia Group and Lancet Psychiatry. Dr. Leucht on their list of the World’s Most Influential Minds, as ranking in the top 1% citations for the field of psychiatry, and as a Highly Cited Researcher.

Topic Covered:

The Brain












Professor Anthony LaMontagne 

Anthony D. LaMontagne is a Professor of Work, Health & Wellbeing at the Institute for Health Transformation, and the School of Health & Social Development at Deakin University, in Melbourne (Australia). He also holds appointments and affiliations with the University of Melbourne, Monash University, the University of Massachusetts, and the Institute for Work & Health in Toronto. He leads a small research unit in Work, Health & Wellbeing, and from 2020, also serves as Director of the Determinants of Health Research domain, in the Institute for Health Transformation. His broad research interest is in developing the scientific and public understanding of work as a social determinant of health and translating this research into policy and practice to improve workplace and worker health. He has an international profile for cross-disciplinary applied epidemiology and intervention research in work & mental health, occupational health & safety (OH&S) and health promotion. 






Associate Professor Eva Kyndt

Associate Professor Eva Kyndt is internationally recognised as an expert in human resource management and development. She is a member of Swinburne University of Technology its public/corporate policy hub the Centre for Transformative Innovation (CTI), and Department of Education and Training Sciences at The University of Antwerp (Belgium). Her research focuses on the intersection between learning and working. She has a profound interest in sustainable careers and focuses on lifelong learning and wellbeing of (prospective) employees. Her research interests include preparing graduates for sustainable careers, social networks in organisations, wellbeing at work and workplace learning. She has advised a diverse range of organisations on their HRD policy, impact evaluation, large scale assessments (i.e. contractor for World Bank) and supports the product development of several evidence-based digital tools in the area of sustainable careers (, hybrid work (, and well-being at work (

Topics covered:

The Workplace 






Dr Sudipto Chatterjee

Dr. Sudipto Chatterjee is a psychiatrist based in Bangalore, India at the National Institute of Advanced Studies. He is a Consultant to the Special Initiative in Mental Health program of the WHO and also associated with the Parivartan Trust. He has made important and original scientific contributions in relation to developing community based care for people with serious and common mental disorders in low resource settings across a number of low and middle income countries, while consulting for the WHO and the University of Melbourne. He has also been involved in clinical trials involving treatments for common and serious mental disorders that have been published in high-impact scientific journals and have been globally influential. His continued interests include efforts to reduce the treatment gap and enhance the social inclusion for people with serious mental disorders effectively and at scale in low resource settings.





Dr Ferdinal Fernando    

Dr Ferdinal Fernando is the Assistant Director and Head of the Health Division of the Human Development Directorate (HDD) under the ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community Department (ASCCD) of ASEAN Secretariat since 2011. Under his purview is the facilitation, coordination, initiation, management and implementation of the ASEAN Health Development Agenda and its Work Programmes focused on Health Priorities involving promoting healthy lifestyles; responding to all hazards and emerging threats; strengthening health systems and access to care; and, ensuring food safety. He has been a licensed physician in the Philippines since 1993. He has been engaged with various development work and health-related initiatives at local and international levels for the past 25 years.

Topics covered:

Global challenges and opportunities



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