Sunday, September 23, 2018

Virtual job fair set for Oct. 17

Posted by Pat Smith On September - 19 - 2018 Comments Off on Virtual job fair set for Oct. 17

The Health Resources and Services Administration will host a Behavior Health Virtual Job Fair on Oct. 17 from 5:45 – 9:15 p.m.


HRSA Virtual Job Fairs are online recruitment events that connect career-seeking clinicians with hiring health care organizations. This Virtual Job Fair will be specifically for behavioral health professionals.


Learn more at

September is Suicide Prevention Month

Posted by Pat Smith On September - 19 - 2018 Comments Off on September is Suicide Prevention Month

Montgomery – Every year, mental health organizations and individuals in the United States and around the world raise awareness of suicide prevention during September, National Suicide Prevention Month. All month, mental health advocates, prevention organizations, survivors, allies, and community members unite to promote suicide prevention awareness.


Alabama Department of Mental Health Commissioner Lynn Beshear authored a recent Op-Ed, “Suicide is Just a Number until it’s Someone You Love,” discussing the need for suicide prevention and awareness. “In our state, a person dies by suicide every 11 hours… There is a stigma surrounding suicide that sometimes prevents serious discussion on the issue. As a result, those who need help may not seek the treatment needed. There is also, at times, a hesitation by loved ones who are not sure how to help,” said Beshear.


The Alabama Suicide Prevention and Resources Coalition (ASPARC) promotes awareness during September and every month. “Making people aware of the causes and consequences of suicide saves lives. It also reduces stigma that keep suicidal and mentally ill persons from obtaining help. Awareness motivates people to establish relationships and help suicidal persons find appropriate treatment. Awareness creates hope in the knowledge that effective treatment is available and death is not inevitable,” said David Coombs, president (ASPARC).


Veterans, in particular, experience a high rate of suicide. An average of 20.6 suicides every day occur among veterans, with 6,132 veterans and 1,387 servicemembers who died by suicide in 2015. Suicide prevention information is important to share with veterans, as crises can be heightened by their experiences during military service.


In order to address the issue of physician suicide, the Council of Emergency Medicine Residency Directors (CORD), annually dedicate the third Monday in September as National Physician Suicide Awareness (NPSA) Day. Data offers the relative risk for suicide among physicians as 2.27 times greater among women and 1.41 times higher among men versus the general population. Each physician suicide is a devastating loss. It is both a very personal loss and a public health crisis.
Suicide is preventable. Learn how to help and obtain resources at

Join us for APPA’s Fall Conference in Mobile

Posted by Pat Smith On September - 19 - 2018 Comments Off on Join us for APPA’s Fall Conference in Mobile

We are excited about our upcoming conference and stellar line up of speakers invited by our president-elect, Godehard Oepen, MD.


We’ll begin with a Mardi Gras-themed reception at the Mobile Carnival Museum on Friday night, Oct. 26, with the conference following on Saturday, Oct. 27.


The conference will provide approximately 7.5 hours of instruction and will feature a resident/student poster contest.


Thanks to a grant from the American Psychiatric Association meeting registration is free for Early Career Psychiatrists, Resident Fellow Members and students! (Early Career Psychiatrists who are General Members of the APA who are within their first seven years after completion of training.)

Find all meeting details on our conference page.

APPA welcomes Meghan Martin

Posted by Pat Smith On September - 19 - 2018 Comments Off on APPA welcomes Meghan Martin

We are happy to introduce Meghan Martin as our new director. She is responsible for the overall management of the Alabama Psychiatric Physicians Association including membership recruitment and retention, and meeting planning. She comes to us from the Renaissance Montgomery Hotel and Spa where she specialized in sales and event management.


Meghan received a bachelor’s degree in broadcast journalism and public relations from Troy University. Her experience will be a welcomed asset to our association.


While Meghan originally hales from Greenville, she currently lives in Montgomery with her husband, Jonathan, their 17 month old son Luke.


Meghan is filling the position left by Jennifer Hayes who resigned in January.

APPA sponsors NAMIAlabama Walks

Posted by Pat Smith On September - 19 - 2018 Comments Off on APPA sponsors NAMIAlabama Walks

NAMIWalks is celebrating its 16th anniversary with its largest and most successful mental health awareness and fundraising event in the country.


APPA is proud to be a sponsor of 2018 NAMIWalks Alabama, which raises awareness of mental illness and raises funds to help individuals and families in our region. This year’s theme focuses on breaking the stigma of mental illness, and will be in Montgomery at the Wynton Blount Cultural Park on Saturday, Sept. 22. Four days out from the event, NAMIWalks Alabama had raised nearly $68,000 of its $75,000 goal.


According to NAMI, mental illness impacts the lives of at least one in five individuals across the United States, or about 65 million Americans. In Alabama, the Department of Mental Health estimates more than 200,000 citizen in Alabama are affected by mental illness.


The walk is a partnership with NAMI, NAMI Alabama and their NAMA affiliates. Representing APPA at the event is Meghan Martin, APPA’s new director.


Learn more at

Will you help shape health policy?

Posted by Pat Smith On September - 25 - 2017 Comments Off on Will you help shape health policy?

With a few exceptions, our laws are written by people with little to no experience in mental health. Decisions made by the 140 members of the Alabama House and Senate directly impact our patients’ lives. We can choose to not get involved hope for the best, or we can take an active role in shaping state health policy.

The Alabama Medical PAC (ALAPAC) helps elect candidates to office whom we can work with on the important mental health issues facing our state.

I am asking your support for ALAPAC. By contributing to ALAPAC, we can help elect candidates we can work with on legislation affecting our patients and the practice of psychiatry.

In just the past few legislative sessions, ALAPAC-supported legislators helped:

• Stop the Patient Compensation System bill, with its annual $3,000 tax on each psychiatrist;

• Stop legislation that would have allowed marriage and family therapists to diagnose and treat mental and emotional disorders;

• Improve the delivery of mental health services in Alabama;

• Ensure adequate funding for Medicaid to prevent loss of access for patients; and

• Stop drivers of physician burnout like MOC.

Laws impacting our patients and the practice psychiatry will continue to be introduced. Can ALAPAC and I count on your support? Donate now or learn more at

Tarak M. Vasavada, MD
President, Alabama Psychiatric Physicians Association