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Ment Health Fam Med. 2009 June; 6(2): 67–69.
PMCID: PMC2777601

Mental Health in Family Medicine comes of age

There have been calls for the renewal of primary health care in many regions of the world. The recent 2009 World Health Assembly Report Primary Health Care Including Health System Strengthening notes that the health of the world's population has improved over the last 30 years, due in part to the implementation of the Alma Ata Declaration.1,2 It also noted that the world needs to learn lessons from the successes and failures of various healthcare systems.

Although advances in primary care development have not been universally felt especially in the area of mental health delivery, evidence is now beginning to accumulate to support the central role primary care can play in mental health delivery.3

An initiative lead by the World Organization of Family Doctors (Wonca) has been the journal Mental Health in Family Medicine. This journal is targeted at improving and up-skilling those individuals who practice and promote mental health in primary care and community settings and those that interface with secondary and tertiary psychiatric care and is indexed in:

  • PubMed Central
  • EMBASE/Excerpta Medica
  • Scopus
  • EMCare
  • British Nursing Index
  • DH – Data
  • Health and Social Care Abstracts
  • OCLC First Search Electronic Collections Online
  • Swets Wise
  • Zetoc
  • EBSCOhost Electronic Journals Service
  • Ulrichs International Periodicals Directory

Mental Health in Family Medicine is well supported by it's international editorial board members who have a vast experience in all areas of mental health from primary to tertiary care including knowledge of mental health policies and legislations. The editorial board members are:

  • Dr Abdullah Al-khatami, Saudi Arabia
  • Dr Jill Benson, Adelaide, Australia
  • Dr Alan Cohen, London, UK
  • Professor Chris Dowrick, Liverpool, UK
  • Professor Pierre-Louis Druais, Port Marly, France
  • Dr GO Eze, Nigeria
  • Professor Sandra Fortes, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
  • Professor Bernard Gay, Bordeaux, France
  • Dr Michelle Funk, Geneva, Switzerland
  • Dr Margalit Goldfracht, Israel
  • Dr Michal Grenville, London, UK
  • Dr Luis Gálvez-Alcaráz, Malaga, Spain
  • Preston J Garrison, Springfield, USA
  • Professor Jane Gunn, Melbourne, Australia
  • Professor Oye Gureje, Ibadan, Nigeria
  • Dr Victor Inem, Nigeria
  • Professor Tony Kendrick, Southampton, UK
  • Dr Anwar Khan, London, UK
  • Dr Tawfik AM Khoja, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
  • Professor Michael Kidd, Adelaide, Australia
  • Dr Michael Klinkman, Michigan, USA
  • Dr Lucja Kolkiewicz, London, UK
  • Professor Nabil Kurashi, Dammam, Saudi Arabia
  • Professor Meng-Chih Lee, Taiwan
  • Associate Professor Christos Lionis, Crete, Greece
  • Professor Witold Lukas, Zabrze, Poland
  • Professor Roger Makonjuola, Ile-Ife, Nigeria
  • Professor Mario Maj, Italy
  • Dr Chris Manning, Twickenham, UK
  • Dr Juan Mendive, Barcelona, Spain
  • Professor Femi Morakinyo, Osun State, Nigeria
  • Dr Dragana Nalic, Beograd, Serbia
  • Dr Matie Obazee, Nigeria
  • Dr Sammy K Ohene, Accra, Ghana
  • Dr TimCOlde Hartman, Nijmegen, The Netherlands
  • Dr Eleni Palazidou, London, UK
  • Dr Henk Parmentier, Croydon, UK
  • Dr Morton Rawlin, Australia
  • Professor Michelle Riba, Ann Arbor, USA
  • Dr Sonia V Roache, Trinidad, West Indies
  • Dr Helen Rodenburg, New Zealand
  • Dr Benedetto Saraceno, Geneva, Switzerland
  • Professor Norman Sartorius, Geneva, Switzerland
  • Dr Wolfgang Spiegel, Vienna, Austria
  • Professor Igor Svab, Ljubljana, Slovenia
  • Professor Joachim Szecsenyi, Heidelberg, Germany
  • Professor Allan Tasman, Louisville, USA
  • Professor Francisco Torres-González, Granada, Spain
  • Professor Andre Tylee, London, UK
  • Dr Evelyn van Weel-Baumgarten, Nijmegen,
  • The Netherlands
  • Dr Ian Walton, London, UK
  • Professor Ian Wilson, Sydney, Australia
  • Dr Barbara Workman, Middlesex, UK
  • Associate Professor Dr Hakan Yaman, Akdeniz, Turkey
  • Dr Filippo Zizzo, EURACT, Italy

In addition, Wonca continues to build links with a variety of stakeholders who have contributed their editorial skills to a number of issues of the journal. We are deeply grateful for this collaboration and will continue to take every opportunity to strengthen existing links and forge new ones.

Mental Health in Family Medicine has responded to the needs of scientists in the field of mental health, especially those with grants and has now been accepted for inclusion in the NIH PubMed Central archive. This agreement with NLM (National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH) and US Department of Health and Human Services) provides another opportunity for improved healthcare through the delivery of information services to a wider readership. This will enable the wider dissemination of issues relating to mental health within the community and families.

This achievement is recognition of the dedication and work of Mental Health in Family Medicine's editorial board members, Wonca, our publisher Radcliffe Publishing and to those of you who have submitted articles, editorials, personal stories and reviews to this journal. The following articles from Volume 5 Number 1 onwards will soon be included in the PubMed Central archive:

Volume 5 Number 1


Mental health in family medicine: a new opportunity. GO Ivbijaro

Guest editorials

Mental health and primary care: family medicine has a role. C van Weel, R Roberts, M Kidd and A Loh

Integrating mental health into primary healthcare. M Funk, B Saraceno, N Drew and E Faydi

Wonca/WHO Primary Care Mental Health Factsheet

What is primary care mental health? WHO and Wonca Working Party on Mental Health


Does perceived financial strain predict depression among young women? Longitudinal findings from the Southampton Women's Survey. N Dunn, H Inskip, T Kendrick, A Oestmann, J Barnett, K Godfrey and C Cooper

Major depression and recent physical or sexual abuse increase readmissions among high-utilising primary care patients. JM Levine, KE Brown, M Chawarski, DA Fiellin, WD White and WH Sledge

A controlled trial of internet-based cognitive-behavioural therapy for panic disorder with face-to-face support from a general practitioner or email support from a psychologist. C Pier, DW Austin, B Klein, J Mitchell, P Schattner, L Ciechomski, KJ Gilson, D Pierce, K Shandley and V Wade

All in for mental health: a pilot study of group therapy for people experiencing anxiety and/or depression and a significant other of their choice. CJ Dodding, DD Nasel, M Murphy and C Howell

Addressing long-term physical healthcare needs in a forensic mental health inpatient population using the UK primary care Quality and Outcomes Framework (QOF): an audit. GO Ivbijaro, LA Kolkiewicz, LSF McGee and M Gikunoo

Reports from the colleges

Mental health education resources for Australia's general practitioners. M Kidd and M Rawlin

Volume 5 Number 2


Primary care mental health and Alma-Ata: from evidence to action. G Ivbijaro, L Kolkiewicz, C Lionis, I Svab, A Cohen and N Sartorius

Guest editorial

New standards of care for people with gender dysphoria. K Wylie


Mental health and primary health care. N Sartorius

Rates of depression among men attending high-HIV-caseload general practices in Australia. L Mao, SC Kippax, CE Newman, G Andrews, G Rogers, DC Saltman and MR Kidd

Reporting distress and quality of life of patients with diabetes mellitus in primary and secondary care in Greece. A Papathanasiou, S Shea, A Koutsovasilis, A Melidonis, E Papavasiliou and C Lionis

Patients' experiences of receiving collaborative care for the treatment of depression in the UK: a qualitative investigation. A Simpson, D Richards, L Gask, S Hennessy and D Escott

Cross-sectional survey of patients in receipt of long-term repeat prescriptions for antidepressant drugs in primary care. G Cruickshank, S MacGillivray, D Bruce, A Mather, K Matthews and B Williams

Depression case management by practice nurses in primary care: an audit. D Ekers and R Wilson

Reports from the colleges

Mental health education and resources for general practitioners in the UK. I Walton

News from WHO and Wonca: new report calls for mental health to be better integrated into primary care. M Funk and G Ivbijaro

Volume 5 Number 3


No mental health without primary care. G Ivbijaro and M Funk

Guest editorials

A smoking ban in psychiatric units: threat or opportunity? L Banham, S Gilbody and H Lester

Suicide and attempted suicide among South Asians in England: who is at risk? B Ineichen


Somatisation and alexithymia in patients with high use of medical care and medically unexplained symptoms. NH Rasmussen, DC Agerter, RC Colligan, MA Baird, CE Yunghans and SS Cha

Variables associated with general practitioners taking on patients with common mental disorders. M-J Fleury, J-M Bamvita, L Farand and J Tremblay

Making fewer depression diagnoses: beneficial for patients? P Lucassen, E van Rijswijk, E van Weel-Baumgarten and C Dowrick

‘It's really a myriad of different signals, not just the textbook’: the complexities of diagnosing depression in gay men in general practice. H Körner, C Newman, L Mao, S Kippax, MR Kidd and D Saltman

Suicide prevention in Nepal: a comparison to Australia – a personal view. J Benson and R Shakya

Case report

‘Well doctor, it is all about how life is lived’: cues as a tool in the medical consultation. TC olde Hartman and HJ van Ravesteijn

Reports from the colleges

World Federation for Mental Health: 2009 World Mental Health Day campaign highlights need for more attention to mental health services in primary health care. PJ Garrison

Volume 5 Number 4


Primary care and dementia: time to act. G Ivbijaro


What should prompt an urgent referral to a community mental health team? C Hilton, P Bajaj, M Hagger, S Taha and J Warner

The needs of primary care mental health service users: a Q-sort study. M Papworth and L Walker

General practitioner attitudes towards referral of eating-disordered patients: a vignette study based on the theory of planned behaviour. H Green, O Johnston, S Cabrini, G Fornai and T Kendrick

The introduction of a healthy reading scheme for people with mental health problems: usage and experiences of health professionals and library staff. R Robertson, SJ Wray, M Maxwell and RJ Pratt

Screening for suicidal thoughts in primary care: the views of patients and general practitioners. P Bajaj, E Borreani, P Ghosh, C Methuen, M Patel and MJ Crawford

Low-intensity workers: lessons learned from supervising primary care mental health workers and dilemmas associated with such roles. M Shepherd and M Rosairo

Reports from the colleges

Developments in primary mental health care in New Zealand. H Rodenburg and A Dowell

Mental Health in Family Medicine has come of age and is here to serve you and the mental health community at large. We look forward to our continued global collaboration.


1. World Health Assembly Report EB124.R8 Primary Health Care Including Health System Strengthening WHO: Geneva, 2009
2. Declaration of Alma-Ata. International Conference on Primary Health Care, Alma-Ata, USSR, 6–12 September, 1978. Available at: [PubMed]
3. WHO/Wonca Integrating Mental Health into Primary Care: a global perspective World Health Organization and World Organization of Family Doctors (Wonca), 2008

Articles from Mental Health in Family Medicine are provided here courtesy of Radcliffe Publishing and Wonca