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Congratulations to the German NTA

Name of the project:  “Aufeinander Achten Freiburg” – First Aid for Mental Disorders, a Course for Medical Students

Authors: Lea Berninger, Caroline Desgardin, Jördis Rausch, Dr. Jan Paulus, Prof. Dr. Dr. Katharina Domschke, PD Dr. Swantje Matthies, Prof. Dr. Sabine Hellwig (Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy, University Medical Centre Freiburg)

Abstract:  In Germany there is a significant need for more low-threshold access to qualified mental health care. Only one in five persons receives adequate treatment for a mental illness, even though the lifetime prevalence of mental illness in Germany is about 50%. The first aid course for mental disorders “Aufeinander Achten Freiburg” was developed by assistant doctors and medical students at the University Medical Centre Freiburg in cooperation with and based on the project “Aufeinander Achten” (meaning “Taking care of each other”) of the association On The Move e.V. in Dresden. It enables students to react adequately in situations of mental stress and crisis in their own social environment and to refer to professional contact points if necessary.


Congratulations to VVAP – Belgian NTA

Name of the project: introduction weekend for first year trainees

Applicant: dr. Sara Pillen, member of the board of the VVAP.


The VVAP (Flemish association of Psychiatric Trainees) organised in October 2021 an introduction weekend for all the first year trainees of psychiatry and child and adolescent psychiatry. The initiative exists since a couple of years, but now we could finally organise it in real life. The aim is to create connection between the trainees from different universities and to share knowledge: relevant information and inspiration for first year trainees.

This year 36 first year trainees attended the weekend. They had the opportunity to learn more about the VVAP, EFPT but also got an introduction in the associations VVP, VVK, VBS, BCNBP.

Description of the project

Since 2018 the VVAP organises an introduction weekend for the first year trainees. After an online edition in 2020, we could finally meet again in 2021. The introduction weekend has different aims: in the first place we want to create connection between the trainees from the different universities, but we also want to provide the first year trainees with relevant information and lectures on some interesting topics. We adjusted the program to meet these aims.

Aim 1: Connection between trainees

We scheduled different activities to create connection between the trainees. We started on Friday evening with a speeddate. Then after dinner, there was a quiz with funny psychiatry related questions. An activity to repeat! The different trainee associations (in Flanders) were presented: VVAP, but also EFPT and Begeesterd (philosophy and psychiatry). After that we went to explore the city of Mechelen.

With their first week of traineeship just finished, the trainees of both CAP and psychiatry and of the different universities had a lot to exchange about. 

Aim 2: Knowledge sharing

On Saturday the focus was more on sharing relevant information. We started the day with an ‘educative’ breakfast, where the different associations presented themselves: VVP (association of adult psychiatry), VVK (association of CAP), BCNBP (Belgian College of Neuropsychopharmacology and Biological Psychiatry ) and VBS (Flemisch professional association, ‘beroeps’vereniging).

After that we departed for UPC (University Psychiatric Centre) Duffel, one of the different psychiatric hospitals in Belgium. There was room for some lectures there. Some tips and tricks from a trainee who just graduated, a lecture on mood disorders and a lecture on acute psychiatry, with also specific attention for CAP population. To end there was an information session from ‘Familieplatform’, an organisation who connects different family organisations connected to mental health.

In the covid-19 years the trainees in psychiatry hadn’t the opportunity to connect and learn from eachother as before. The changing social context had also its influence on the mental healthcare. We also saw trainees dropping out. As VVAP we have the task to stand up for the rights of the psychiatric trainees. This introduction weekend is important because it lowers the treshold to contact us if there is something wrong. We also know that a strong network is an important part of the prevention of dropping out.  




Congratulations to UYP – “Ukrainian Young Phsychiatrists” – Ukrainian NTA

Project creators – Sofiia Lahutina and Spartak Subbota, psychiatric trainees from Ukraine, members of national trainee organization “Ukraininan Young Psychiatrists”, leading specialists of the Institute of Cognitive Modeling of Ukraine.

“Tell me” ( ) is a free online platform for psychological counseling in Ukraine. The platform was created for any person in need of emotional support, counseling and assistance due to the rapid changes that are currently taking place in the economy, society and life of everyone because of COVID 19 pandemic.

Use of the platform is free. Specialists work on the platform on a volunteer basis. The team of the platform uses evidence based methods of psychiatric counselling and psychotherapeutic help.

During the entire existence of the platform it has received 9489 applications from users, 6509 applications were processed and executed. Currently 220 specialists work on the platform.

Young trainers have the opportunity not only to take part in the project as consultants, but also to conduct psycho-educational work with other project participants. Conduct lectures, webinars, support groups. If the psychiatric trainee becomes a project participant, he / she will receive supervision from senior colleagues and ongoing community support. Certainly, additional training in one of the psychotherapy methods is appreciated.

Psychiatric trainees have the opportunity not only to use the practical skills of psycho-counseling, psycho-correction and psychotherapy, but also to use the platform for their scientific research.




Congratulations to APIP – The Portuguese Association of Psychiatry Trainees

The project “Conversas sobre Saúde Mental” (“Talks about Mental Health”) consisted of a set of six
webinars, occurring from april 29th to june 3rd 2020, focusing on mental health-related issues and their crossover with the COVID-19 pandemic.

The topics covered ranged from reorganization of psychiatry units and changes in psychiatry training, to expected effects of COVID-19 on society, among others.

The lecturers were known experts in their respective fields, and moderation was done by psychiatry trainees.

The webinars were streamed live on APIP’s Facebook page, open and freely accessible. The recordings are available on APIP’s Youtube channel and Facebook page.





Winner Wim DuHayon

Project ‘The Passionate Psychiatrist’

Education Committee, Cluster D, Universitaire Opleiding Psychiatrie Zuid (UOPZ) Maastricht,
The Netherlands

Committee Members:
• Chair: Drs. Wim Duhayon, – 4th year Resident in
• Drs. Hannah Dekelver – 4th year Resident in Psychiatry
• Drs. Frank Koolen – 4th year Resident in Psychiatry
• Drs. Michiel Smeets – 4th year Resident in Psychiatry
• Drs. Suzanne van Bronswijk – last year Resident in Psychiatry / PhD Candidate
• Drs. Thera Reus – 4th year Resident in Psychiatry

The project is an extra-curricular evening series, called ‘The Passionate Psychiatrist’ organized by the
Education Committee of the UOPZ training program. For every evening (cluster of five evenings), a
local psychiatrist was invited to share his or her passion for the profession with all the residents in an
open stage setting using non frontal education techniques. By creating this open and safe platform,
residents got the chance to get inspired by their supervisors and explore their own ambitions and
motives. This innovative project was welcomed and extremely positively evaluated by the residents
as well as the psychiatrists, and was also (financially) supported by the Board of Directors of the
UOPZ program. Due to this exceptional success, the evening series are happening for the last 3 years.

Award for excellence 2017

Turkey won the EFPT Award for Excellence 2017 for their project  “Residency Guide” by the Resident Committee of the Psychiatric Association of Turkey.

The guide was created by contributions of voluntary Turkish psychiatry residents. It not only contains information on how to get psychotherapy education, which books to read or how to follow ethical codes, but also aims to build up bonds between psychiatry residents and the Psychiatric Association of Turkey. This guide is written with a genuine language and in the form of a daily conversation with a colleague. Every chapter was reviewed by an early career psychiatrist.


Psychiatry through the prism of cinema, Russia by Dr Evgeniia Chibikova

The project was organised by Department of Psychiatry of Samara State Medical University and a local NCO «Think, Samara!». The primary goal was to fill the gap in public knowledge on mental illness. The NCO provided material resources, and psychiatric trainees – the concept and realisation. The sessions included a viewing of a film related to mental illness, a lecture and discussion with the audience of 50-70 people. The meetings coincided with important dates promoted by WHO (World Autism Awareness Day, Schizophrenia Awareness Week). We believe that the project supported a positive image of psychiatry, and presented young psychiatrists as competent, caring and professional.


Award for excellence 2016

Sweden won the EFPT Award for Excellence 2016 for their project “Mental Health Run”

President Livia de Picker and the Swedish delegation accepting the award
President Livia de Picker and the Swedish delegation accepting the award

On World Mental Health Day 2015, almost 1200 people took 5 million steps to to raise awareness of mental health disorders in Sweden.

The project called “Mental Health Run” is a charity run to raise awareness of psychiatric disorders and to raise money for organizations and initiatives improving mental health. It started as an idea from Anna Malmqvist, a member of STP, the Swedish federation of psychiatric trainees. In this unique project representatives from STP worked with the Swedish Psychiatric Association and two patient organizations called Suicide Zero and Hjärnkoll. More than 20 000€ was raised and stories of people with experience of psychiatric illness were shared through texts and films on social media, that was seen by up to 25 000 people. The homepage provided information on psychiatric disorders and the two biggest newspapers in Sweden wrote about the project.

This year even more organizations have joined the project, which is also spreading to other cities in Sweden.

By working closely together, there was a mutual exchange of ideas and knowledge between the organizations and this have had spin-off effects even outside the project.

STP is proud to be acknowledged with the EFPT award for excellence for the initiative of and work with Mental Health Run. As we’re currently working with the race of 2016, we are very happy to get the chance to promote Mental Health Run in Europe and would be glad to see Mental Health Run spreading across Europe.

With flexible prices, possibility to walk or run and an overall appreciation of people’s differences we’ve tried to create a place where everyone feels welcome. We warmly welcome everyone interested to join us in the race in Stockholm on the 8th October 2016 to take more steps for awereness on mental health!

For more information, visit the web page or Facebook page (both in Swedish).


Bitesized Teaching, UK, by Dr Ryan Dias, Dr Robert Bartram

Bitesized Teaching is an effective, quick and easy way of enhancing knowledge of physical health conditions in a psychiatric setting. Junior doctors deliver a curriculum of 20 core physical health topics in brief 10 minute tutorials that take place once a week in the ward lunchtime handover period. The tutorials deliver high impact learning through streamlined aims and objectives. This is an initiative that is easy to implement and has proved transferable across different settings and has low set up costs. The initiative has been running successfully for two years in Yorkshire and Derbyshire regions of England.

Global Mental Health for medical students, UK, by Dr Sophie Tomlin and Dr Lucy Potter

This project aimed to improve recruitment into psychiatry by setting up an innovative global mental health module for medical students at St George’s University, London. Our aim was to target students with an interest in volunteering abroad, who had not previously considered a career in mental health.

Through a competitive application process, we were awarded national funding which enabled us to establish a medical student exchange programme with Hospital Santa Maria, Lisbon, Portugal. Clinical attachments were preceded by introductory lectures provided by psychiatrists with experience of global mental health to inspire commitment to psychiatry.

Building the Foundations for Better Placement in Psychiatry: Introducing the First Mentoring Scheme for Foundation Doctors in Psychiatry in East of England, UK, by Yasir Hameed

My project involved the successful introduction and implementation of an innovative mentoring scheme for foundation doctors in psychiatry in my organisation (Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust) which is the largest mental health service provider for more than 1.5 million people in East of England.

In December 2015, foundation doctors in Norfolk were offered the opportunity to be mentored by psychiatric trainees to reduce stress and burnout. At the end of the mentorship, feedback was collected from mentees and mentors and the feedback highlighted the positive experience of mentorship. After this initial successful pilot, the mentoring scheme now is offered to all foundation doctors in Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust.

The Passionate Psychiatrist, Netherlands, by Drs. Wim Duhayon, Hannah Dekelver, Frank Koolen, Michiel Smeets, Suzanne van Bronswijk, Thera Reus

The project is an extra-curricular evening series, called ‘The Passionate Psychiatrist’ organized by the Education Committee of the UOPZ training program. For every evening (in total five evenings), a local psychiatrist was invited to share his or her passion for the profession with all the residents in an open stage setting using non frontal education techniques. By creating this open and safe platform, residents got the chance to get inspired by their supervisors and explore their own ambitions and motives. This innovative project was welcomed and extremely positively evaluated by the residents as well as the psychiatrists, and was also (financially) supported by the Board of Directors of the UOPZ program. Due to this exceptional success, a next evening series is already planned.

Refocus, Ireland, by Dr Azvee

A Vision for Change details a comprehensive model of mental health service provision for Ireland published in 2006. One the vital recommendation is that service users and carers should be involved in every aspect of mental health service development and delivery.

College of Psychiatrists Ireland (CPsychI) was formed in 2009, to support the delivery of mental health services in line with the recovery model and the delivery of the national policy on mental health services A Vision for Change.

The REFOCUS (Recovery Experience Forum of Carers and Users of Services) was founded by the CPsychI in 2011.

The inclusion of the REFOCUS group into the training of psychiatrists in Ireland is prodigious as it has allowed a two-way partnership to foster an enterprising and insightful approach to a healthy mental health provision in Ireland.

The First National Meeting of Psychiatry Residents, Turkey, by Dr Erzin, Dr Yilmaz, Dr Gurcan, Dr Cikrikcili

As Resident Committee of Psychiatry Association of Turkey, we held our first meeting on 26-27 March 2016, in Samsun, Turkey. The meeting was held with 45 psychiatry residents from 11 cities of Turkey. The aim of the meeting was increasing communication between psychiatry residents from different cities and institutions in Turkey. The participants found an opportunity to discuss issues about their training programs, the personal and professional rights, possible research collaborations and ways to develop their occupational skills. An interview; “If I was a psychiatry resident now…” with Prof. Orhan Öztürk, who is the firsy president of Psychiatry Association of Turkey, and Prof. Berna Uluğ, who is a student of Prof. Orhan Öztürk, was in the program as well. Three generations of psychiatric community were gathered in our meeting. There were also workshops concerning exchange and scientific programs, research fellowships and collaborations.

Trainees online (TrOn), UK, by Dr Holt

Trainees Online (TrOn) is a learning resource designed to support the postgraduate education of aspiring psychiatrists who are preparing for the membership examinations of the Royal College of Psychiatrists.  Senior psychiatry trainees volunteer as trainee editors, guiding the creation of learning modules that are aligned with the MRCPsych examination.  Trainees who have recently passed the MRCPsych apply in a competitive process to produce content for their pre-membership peers.  Authors are supported by subject experts, the College Examinations Panels and TrOn content editors to craft interactive modules for publication online; access is included in the training subscription fee for UK trainees.

psychART, by Dr Saffron Homayoun and Dr Megan Fisher

psychART is a trainee-led project funded by the Royal College of Psychiatrists and Health Education England, aiming to increase recruitment into psychiatry by celebrating the specialty’s prominent links with the arts.

It is comprised of three parts:

psychART competition: a nationwide competition for foundation year trainees to enter their artwork in any form.

psychART conference: a day of workshops and talks focusing on the use of art within psychiatry and its relevance to patients and clinicians.

psychART exhibition: a national tour of artwork from the competition to maximise the project’s impact, including an exhibition at the Royal College of Psychiatrists.


Award for excellence 2015


Russia : Project “Non scholae, sed vitae discimus – Psychiatry ” presented by Pavel Alfimov

Educational project (a series of webinars) in the field of liaison psychiatry. The project was developed by early career clinicians and meant for the audience of their peers – Russian-speaking internists and psychiatrists working in consultant teams and psychosomatic units. Authors held three webinars (on psychopharmacotherapy, depression and anxiety disorders in general medical practice) in 2014-2015. Events gained the attention of more than 700 unique online users and had more than 2000 offline views. Successful reach to the audience and positive feedback inspired the speakers to plan a series of similar events in 2015-2016.

This non-commercial educational project was developed by a cardiologist, Dr. Ruslan Shepel of National Web-Society of Internal Medicine ( and a psychiatrist, Dr. Alexey Pavlichenko, chairperson of Early Career Council of Russian Society of Psychiatrists.

The aims of the project were:

  1. To share relevant practical and theoretical knowledge in the field of liaison psychiatry within the community of young Russian-speaking medical professionals (general practitioners, cardiologists, endocrinologists, etc.) and early career psychiatrists working in consultant teams and psychosomatic units in general hospitals.
  2. To provide an opportunity for young researchers and clinicians to share their knowledge and practical skills with peers in the medical community.
  3. Inspire networking and direct communication between speakers and students via a web-based platform (webinars).

Distinctive features of the project:

  1. The content and presentations were prepared solely by early career psychiatrists without private or public sector funding.
  2. The project was integrated into an existing educational framework (Internet-Session, Russian-wide Educational Program for Physicians), which helped to promote the project and engage a wide audience without additional costs.

We held three webinars in late 2014 and early 2015:

  1. Management of Patients with Depressive Disorders in Primary Medical Setting. Dec 04, 2014, Alexander Kursakov (>500 online viewers) – link
  2. Rational Psychopharmacotherapy in a General Hospital. Dec 18, 2014, Pavel Alfimov (>400 online viewers) – link
  3. Anxiety Disorders in General Medical Practice – Psychiatric and Cardiologic Views. Feb 19, 2015, Alexey Pavlichenko and Ruslan Shepel (>600 online viewers) link

All videos were later published on the web-site of the program (, overcall off-line view count is now more than 2000! After receiving positive feedback from peers and opinion leaders in the field, we decided to develop the project further in 2015-2016 using this innovative web-based format.

Applicants are members of Russian national trainee organization (Early Career Council of Russian Society of Psychiatrists) represented within EFPT.


1. Azerbeijan

The main goal of our project was to alleviate integration of residents into the process of self-education, work and self-improvement.

We conduct weekly meetings where residents make scientific presentations after which have a discussion, stressing strong and weak points of the work. We invite Professors to give lectures on topics that interest residents the most. Oral presentations are helping residents to fight fear of giving a public speech. This we consider a very important step for the future career.

On our Facebook page – Azerbaijan Young Psychiatrists and Trainees Association – we share new information and discuss future development of our association.

2. France : AFFEP’s national network project called « Connecting Trainees »

It describes the various modes of spreading information from the EFPT and the national association to the trainees (EFPT powerpoint presentations, network of local AFFEP referents, Welcome booklet, association journal, social network tools, website…) and the tools that can be used by the french trainees to share ideas that could improve the french psychiatric training (network, national surveys on topics related to training…).

3. Turkey  : “First Step Towards Profession”

First Step Towards Profession is a special educational program for the incoming psychiatry trainees aiming to introduce them to the psychiatric society in Turkey, facilitate them in building their professional identity and skills. Since 2012 it takes place every year within the program of Annual Meeting and Clinical Education Symposium of Psychiatric Association of Turkey (PAT). The duration of the program is a day and a half. The content of the Program includes several presentations from trainees and professors, discussions on different aspects of psychiatry, a poster-walk, besides a social program organized by the Trainee Committee. The Program is financially supported by PAT.

4. United-Kingdom : Docbate

Docbate is a national medico-political debate for medical students. It is facilitated by doctors training in psychiatry across the whole of the UK with the goal of increasing interest in psychiatry.

On April 28th, 2015, we held our inaugural debate simultaneously in 6 different medical school across the UK. Feedback from the national debate was extremely positive.

Next year, we hope to bridge the gap between psychiatry and other medical specialities and have established links with other royal colleges to run joint debates. Docbate would also be a wonderful forum to compare and contrast ideas with our European colleagues.


Award for excellence 2014

France: Project « The National SurveyL’enquête nationale

The AFFEP’s tool for representativeness”

General presentation:

The AFFEP* has a strong implication in the reforming of the psychiatric training conducted by the university institutions. In order to represent our 1,100 members (out of appr. 1800 psychiatric trainees), the AFFEP’s board launched in 2009 the first national online survey on the research activities during training. The idea was to get concrete data about the possibilities for the trainees to get access to research programs. Since 2009, the AFFEP conducts a national survey every year on various topics related to our training.


The aim of the yearly AFFEP’s national survey is to get objective data on the french training, in order to guarantee AFFEP’s representativeness and legitimacy on training’s topics.


An online survey is conducted every year by the board through the association’s mailing list. The results are presented in university commissions and published in the AFFEP journal to inform the trainees. Results are also published in national scientific journals to raise awareness on training’s issues. The 2012 survey on the image of psychiatry helped us to get involved in the creation of the « Recruitment and Promoting the Image of Psychiatry » Working Group at Zurich EFPT Forum in 2013.

Here are listed the topics of the national surveys conducted by AFFEP so far:

  • 2009/2010: Research activities during training.
  • 2010/2011 : Psychotherapy training
  • 2011/2012 : Carrers plans of French residents in psychiatry
  • 2012/2013 : Image of psychiatry in medicine and identity of the young psychiatrists
  • 2013/2014 : Trainees and medical responsibility (ongoing study)

The annual national AFFEP survey is an efficient tool to collect valuable data from our trainees. We hope this initiative will inspire other countries.


1. France The National Survey – L’enquête nationale, the AFFEP* board members, presided by Deborah SEBBANE: Aurélie BERGER, Alice VIGNES, Marine LARDINOIS, Clara MERCHIN, Alexis LEPETIT, Alexandra COLIN, Clara FETEANU, Adrien PONTAROLLO, Malaïka LASFAR, Gabrielle MUGNIER.

2. Ireland : Promoting Psychiatry to Medical Students – The Creation of ‘A Career in Psychiatry’ Booklet. The booklet can be accessed on the College’s website via the following link , Trainee Committee, College of Psychiatrists of Ireland.

3. Israel “National congress for Israeli psychiatry residents, “Residents: The Future of Psychiatry”, Ben H. Amit. See Photos

4. UK and Ireland ‘Making links’ internationally- The expansion of Medfest in the Republic of Ireland 2012-2014 , Psychiatry Trainee Committee, Royal College of Psychiatrists (RCPsych) UK & Trainee Committee, College of Psychiatrists of Ireland (CPsychI)


Award for excellence 2013


Lithuania: Project “Lithuanian, Latvian and Belarusian Psychiatric Trainees Conference “Psychiatric residency: Issues, Theory and Practice”


1. Czech Republic “Neuropsychiatric Forum (NPF) – development of professional soiety with interdisciplinary focus on brain disorders”

2. France

3. Greece “Cooperation in Psychiatry in Greece: Organizing educational meetings”

4. Lithuania “Lithuanian, Latvian and Belarusian Psychiatric Trainees Conference “Psychiatric residency: Issues, Theory and Practice”

5. UK “Medfest”


Award for excellence 2012


K O Connor, T Thekiso, L Douglas, H Barry, D Flynn, A McCarthy, G Swanwick “Project: A Summer School for Irish Medical Students”


1. Portuguese Association of Psychiatry Trainees – APIP “Courses of psychotherapy training”

2. Dr Maria Axiak “Online courses for trainees on elecrtoconvulsive therapy”

3. Dr Eric Kelleher “Quarterly e-newsletter ‘Think Tank”

4. Dr. Kamran Ahmed and Dr. Rory Conn “Medfest, the first ever national medical film festival”

5. K O Connor, T Thekiso, L Douglas, H Barry, D Flynn, A McCarthy, G Swanwick “Project: A Summer School for Irish Medical Students”


Award for excellence 2011


1. Elodie del Valle, Jordan Sibeoni, Aude Van Effenterre  “The psychiatry trainees welcome booklet”


1. Elodie del Valle, Jordan Sibeoni, Aude Van Effenterre  “The psychiatry trainees welcome booklet”

2. Barrett, E. , Barry H., Guruswamy S., McCarthy M. , O Connor, K “What Trainees Really Think: National Survey of training needs, course development and outcome measures from a two year initiative to create a National Conference for Trainees in Psychiatry in Ireland”.

3. Mario Luciano ” Italian project: Professione psichiatra: una guida pratica alla formazione, all’inserimento lavorativo e all’aggiornamento”

4. Dr. Neil Masson “Developing novel teach for teachers course for psychiatry trainees”

5. Nikita Bezborodovs (Latvia), Sameer Jauhar (Scotland),. Jonas Mikaliunas (Lithuania), Olga Paravaya (Belarus), Johan Reutfors (Sweden), Darya Smirnova (Russia) “2nd Young Psychiatrists’ Network Meeting – Riga 2011: moving together towards new horizons”

6. Raphael Psaras , Achileas Economou , Anastasios Papakostantinou , Spyridon Kleisas “The Psychiatric Hospital of Attica model training program”

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