The event, the first of its kind in the region, was held under the theme “Children’s and Adolescents’ Mental Health: Shaping the Future” and was hosted by Al Jalila Children’s Specialty Hospital.
Dubai: The conference of the International Association for Child and Adolescent Mental Health concluded its activities successfully on Friday at the Dubai World Trade Center, after a program full of lectures and meaningful discussion sessions with the participation of elite specialists and researchers over a period of 4 days. The conference included a youth panel on the latest studies and innovative solutions to a range of mental health issues facing young people today around the world.
Al Jalila Children’s Specialty Hospital hosted the first event of its kind in the region between December 5 and 9 under the slogan “Children’s and Adolescents’ Mental Health: Shaping the Future”.
On Thursday, the conference witnessed a valuable discussion session on the future of mental health in the United Arab Emirates, with the participation of prominent personalities, including Dr. Ammar Al-Banna, Chairman of the Organizing Committee of the Conference, and Head of the Center of Excellence for Child and Adolescent Mental Health at Al Jalila Children’s Specialty Hospital. along with Amal Al Balushi, Director of the National Program for Happiness and Wellbeing at the Ministry of Community Development; Ibrahim Al Harbi, Manpower Specialist at the Abu Dhabi Early Childhood Authority; Dr. Essam Al Zarouni, Executive Director of the Medical Services Sector at the Emirates Health Services Corporation; Fatima Belrahif, Executive Director of the School Inspection Bureau at the Knowledge and Human Development Authority in Dubai; And Dr. Mishaal Sultan, Consultant Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist at Al Jalila Children’s Specialty Hospital.
Participants had the opportunity to listen and communicate directly with mental health professionals with extensive experience in this field through interactive sessions that focused on ways to promote mental health and provide support for those in need of care and assistance. The discussions shed light on important topics such as the optimal utilization of available resources, and patients’ willingness to raise their problems without hesitation in front of trusted specialists.
During the session, Mrs. Amal Al Balushi reviewed some of the main initiatives designed to promote the mental health of children and adolescents, which fall within the framework of the UAE government’s agenda in dealing with such challenges.
In turn, Dr. Ibrahim emphasized the role of the Abu Dhabi Early Childhood Authority in promoting and supporting children’s development and achieving their well-being from the period of pregnancy until the age of eight.
Dr. Ammar Al-Banna said that the event achieved most of its objectives and was widely praised, and succeeded in attracting important competencies and experiences that contributed to enriching the discussion on children’s mental health. This success would not have been possible without the great support and generous patronage of the wise leadership and a number of public and private sector institutions and organizations.
He added, “This event contributed to introducing the efforts of Al Jalila Children’s Hospital and its continuous support in treating mental disorders, and its role in enriching discussions aimed at promoting mental health.”
Dr. Daniel Fong, President of the International Society of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, said: “The objectives of the conference have been achieved, especially those related to engaging in constructive discussions about mental health services for young people in the region. The conference also contributed to highlighting the extensive efforts made by many organizations around the world for prevention Mental illnesses, supporting and empowering people with mental disorders, and assisting and rehabilitating them.
In a related context, the conference dealt with a wide range of topics, including recent developments in psychological rehabilitation and initiatives of partners and stakeholders from the public and private sectors.
Dr. Fong expressed his thanks and appreciation to Al Jalila, appreciating her role in holding such important events, which pave the way for successful and effective communication between the sector’s experts, which brings many gains and positives.
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