Thursday, July 31, 2014

Event 2 Aug 2014: Conference on Building An Inclusive Society: The Role of Caregivers in Engaging Our Loved Ones in Meaningful Contributions

Conference on

The Role of Caregivers in Engaging Our Loved Ones in Meaningful Contributions

2 August 2014, Saturday, 9am – 4.00pm

0830       Registration
0915       Guests to be seated
0925       Arrival of Guest-of-Honour, Mdm. Halimah Yacob, Speaker for Parliament of Singapore, Advisor to NCSS
0930       Welcome message by Mr Keith Chua
0940       Video Voice
0945       Feedback from previous breakout session:
                “What needs to be done” by Mrs Margaret Ong
0955       Panel Discussion: “Building an Inclusive Society”
                Role of Policy Makers
                Mdm. Halimah Yacob, Speaker for Parliament of Singapore, Advisor to NCSS
1055       Role of Institute of Mental Health
                Prof Fung Shuen Sheng Daniel, Chairman, Medical Board IMH
1125       Rehab Skills for Caregivers
                 Diane Brewer, Trainer and Consultant, Psychiatric Rehabilitation
1210       Q & A
1255       Lunch
1345       Breakout Sessions:
                “The Role of Caregivers in Engaging Our Loved Ones in Meaningful Contributions”
1.       Dialectical Behavior Therapy by Paul Chong/Eunice Quek
2.       Wellness Recovery Action Plan or WRAP (English) by Wong Chia Lee/Nelson Lo
3.       “LEAP” (English) by Rita Haque/Loke Jun Leong
4.       Wellness Recovery Action Plan or WRAP (Mandarin) by Ng Soon Guan/Yuh Fen/Yin Feng
1515       “Effective Collaboration” by Dr Joseph Leong (IMH), Nelson Lo (CAL) and Anne Law  (HCC)
                A Skit & Song item
1600       End of Conference
Payment of S$20 per pax
Address:              Social Service Institute
                                111 Somerset Road, #04-01, TripleOne Somerset, Singapore 238164
Main organizer
Caregivers Alliance Limited
Supported by:
National Council of Social Service (NCSS)
Social Service Institute (SSI)
Institute of Mental Health (IMH)

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Singapore Mental Health News June 2014

Series on schizophrenia 5: A mother’s painful journey

June 3rd, 2014 | by Trinity Chua
Her son has schizophrenia. She has polio.  That has not stopped Elsie Tan from declaring:  “I think we are quite a happy family.”
But she has one worry: Her eldest son’s future when she is gone.

The autumn years

The Straits TimesTuesday, Jun 03, 2014
Professor Kua Ee Heok is one of the main researchers of the 10-year-long Jurong Ageing Study, which looks at ways to prevent and alleviate symptoms of depression and dementia in the elderly.

Bridging the great divide

The Straits TimesThursday, Jun 05, 2014
SINGAPORE - In October this year, patients at the Singapore General Hospital will be serenaded by professional and amateur musicians as part of the annual MusicFest@SGH, organised by home-grown musical theatre company Sing'theatre.

Yet another hurdle: Jobs

June 5th, 2014 | by Trinity Chua
Our series on schizophrenia: Part 6
If you have mental illness, can you go to a university? Get a non-menial job?

Synthetic narcotics an alarming new trend

Wednesday, Jun 11, 2014
The Straits Times
By Andy Ho

Guide to 10 new made-in-Singapore health apps

Screenshot of Gacha Island.
Sunday, Jun 15, 2014
Mind Your Body, The Straits Times

More support for the mentally ill

Saturday, Jun 21, 2014
The Straits Times
By Linette Lai
SINGAPORE - Those struggling with mental illness often need further care, but may not know where to find it.

This article was first published on June 18, 2014.
Get a copy of The Straits Times or go to for more stories.

Team to take mental health services into homes

Published: 4:03 AM, June 18, 2014
Allied health professionals will visit those identified as at risk of psychiatric conditions

New community mental health care programmes launched

Published: 4:56 PM, June 17, 2014

Mobile teams and a new drop-in rehab centre aim to bring care services to more mental health patients

Odds are that gambling's a genetic trait, study shows

The Straits TimesFriday, Jun 20, 2014
The next time you lose a bet, you may be able to blame your genes. Researchers in Singapore and the US have linked five genes to people's behaviour when it comes to betting.

This article was first published on June 18, 2014.
Get a copy of The Straits Times or go to for more stories.

Genes ‘could determine willingness to take risks’

Published: 4:03 AM, June 18, 2014
SINGAPORE — Genetics could determine whether a person is more willing to take strategic risks, such as when gambling, a study by a team that included researchers from the National University of Singapore (NUS) showed.

SAF looking into netizen’s claim of feigning depression for NS exemption


Neo Chai Chin

Published: 4:03 AM, June 16, 2014
SINGAPORE — The Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) is looking into a netizen’s boast that he obtained a discharge from National Service (NS) by feigning mental illness, but gave the assurance that servicemen with genuine psychological conditions would continue to be cared for.

SAF 'looking into' blogger who feigned mental illness to get discharged

AsiaOneSunday, Jun 15, 2014
The Singapore Army said on its Facebook page on Sunday that it was "regrettable that a Singaporean blogger has boasted about how he managed to dishonestly and blatantly get himself discharged from National Service" and that the "SAF is looking into this matter".

Netizen's claim of avoiding NS being probed

The Straits TimesThursday, Jun 19, 2014
The Ministry of Defence is investigating a netizen's claim that he avoided his national service duty by faking mental instability and going on a "medical certificate spree".

'Technology addiction' - how should it be treated?

Dr. Wang explains that the first step is to identify triggers for excessive Internet, social media or technology use - such as boredom or stress. Next, learned automatic responses - such as using the smartphone to relieve anxiety - are challenged and reversed.

The mystery behind mass murders

By Chong Siow Ann, For The Straits Times
Published on Jun 21, 2014 11:37 AM  
We would emphasise that most violence has no relationship to mental illness, and that is a statistical fact. We also like to point out that most mentally ill people are not violent; most violent acts are not committed by people with mental illness; and people with serious mental illness are more likely to be victims of violence than perpetrators.
The writer is the vice-chairman, medical board (research), at the Institute of Mental Health.

Can’t get out of bed? You may have depression

By Health Xchange | Fit to Post Health – Thu, Jun 26, 2014
“Most everybody have ups and downs, but the feelings of unhappiness eventually go away after a few days. Those who suffer from depression remain in a depressed state for weeks to months, or for some, even years” explains Dr Chan.

Can you feign depression?

June 26th, 2014 | by Tan Yong Heng Jack
“Not easy to feign depression,” said Ang Yong Guan, a retired military psychiatrist who had served in the Singapore Armed Forces for more than 17 years.

The evolving mental health landscape in Singapore

  1. Rathi Mahendran
+ Author Affiliations
1.      Cyrus Ho is a specialist registrar at the National University Hospital, Singapore. He has special interests in neuropsychiatry, neuro-rehabilitation and the interface between medicine and psychiatry. Roger Ho is an assistant professor and a consultant psychiatrist at the National University Hospital, Singapore. He has a special interest in psychoneuroimmunology and the interface between medicine and psychiatry. Rathi Mahendran is an associate professor and a senior consultant psychiatrist at the National University Hospital, Singapore. She has a special interest in psycho-oncology, medical education and research into depressive disorder.
  1. Correspondence Dr Roger C. M. Ho, Assistant Professor and Consultant, Department of Psychological Medicine, Level 9, NUHS Tower Block, 1E Lower Kent Ridge Road, Singapore 119 228. Email:


Singapore is a multi-ethnic Asian society with a unique sociocultural and economic background. This is an overview of the characteristics of psychiatry in this nation in terms of service provision, mental health funding, education and training, and the challenges it faces in the midst of an evolving mental health landscape. Over the past 5 years, Singapore has maintained a closer tie with the Royal College of Psychiatrists through the the College’s Membership examination.

Playing Cut The Rope makes you sharper

Friday, Jun 27, 2014
By Kash Cheong
SINGAPORE - A new study by scientists at Nanyang Technologoical University (NTU) has showed that adults who played the physics-based puzzle game Cut The Rope regularly became better at thinking on their feet.

SAF takes mental health issues seriously: Dr Ng

SAF takes mental health issues seriously: Dr Ng
Published: 9:21 PM, June 30, 2014

Singapore Mental Health News May 2014

Let’s end stigma of mental illness

Today By Joel Yang
Published: 4:13 AM, May 1, 2014

With the recent highlight of mental illness in our society, we need to start asking if we are doing enough to understand and treat mental illness in Singapore. Perhaps the first step would be to address the stigma against mental illness.

Getting Help in NUS (National University of Singapore)

Posted by quietmouse in depression
Flying without fear: How to overcome a phobia of air travel
Jennani DuraiThe Straits TimesTuesday, May 06, 2014

Another blow for suicide NS man’s family

The Independent
May 9th, 2014 | by Trinity Chua
There will be no insurance payout for Ganesh Pillay, the national serviceman who committed suicide last year after his officers didn’t pay enough attention to the young’s mental illness.

Sufyan's New CD Aims to Create Awareness About Mental Illness

Wed May 14, 2014 1:27pm BST
Singaporean singer-songwriter wants to promote World Mental Health Day and provide hope for those with psychological issues.

SAMH forum: “Making Peace with Anxiety”

SAMH forum: “Making Peace with Anxiety”

Date: 24 May 2014 (Sat)
Time: 2-5pm
Venue: Revenue House (IRAS) Auditorium (5th floor)
55 Newton Road, Singapore 307987
Summary: This forum aims to increase understanding of common anxiety disorders and share tips on how they can be successfully managed.
Admission is free.
Registration website:

Mental Illness and Malingering

Posted on May 19, 2014
By Chong Joe En
Mental illnesses are an unspoken and often unseen aspect of any society and Singapore is no exception. Studies show that at least 1 in 17 Singaporeans have suffered from depression at some point in time in their lives.This aspect of mental health often has far reaching impacts on criminality and criminal defence. Only recently, a housewife who was convicted of maid abuse had her 16 month jail-term commuted to a $15,000 fine on appeal.2  The High Court attached significant mitigating weight to her diagnosis of psychiatric problems. Indeed, this consideration of mental illness is itself encoded into section 84 of the Penal Code, which provides the defence of unsoundness of mind.

Genes for depression part of adaptation?

Published on May 23, 2014 11:01 AM
By Andy Ho Senior Writer

 Singapore Mental Health Conference 2014 17-18 Oct 2014

Over 3,500 readers (reading The Tapestry Project SG)?! THANK YOU!

Wow, I’m totally blown away.
After recently publishing my story on suicide, we now have 200 followers on our Facebook Page, followed by a record high of over 3,500 readers — the highest number since January, when we first started The Tapestry Project SG!

Nicole K.
Founder & Editor, The Tapestry Project (SG)

Mum found dead after allegedly slashing boy

12-year-old in intensive care at NUH; woman believed to have taken her life
Published on May 13, 2014 8:40 AM
A 12-year-old boy who was allegedly slashed by his mother, who was later found dead, is still in intensive care at the National University Hospital (NUH) and missed her cremation yesterday morning.

Schizophrenic mother who killed her son acquitted 30 years later

Channelnewsasia By POSTED: 20 May 2014 07:25
Three decades after she was charged with the murder of her young son in 1984, a woman diagnosed with schizophrenia was yesterday acquitted by the High Court.

Raymond Anthony Fernando’s 2 letters to the press on the mentally ill & their carers

Monday, May 26, 2014

(1) Letter to MediaCorp’s TODAY newspaper: Hope for more support for carers, people with mental illness
With the reopening of the 12th Parliament, I welcome the news in the report “Leadership change for 4 of 11 Govt Parliamentary Committees” (May 16).
(2) Letter to The Straits Times: Donate to the mentally ill too

THE Singapore Children's Society is appealing for philanthropists to step forward and donate $1,000 a year to its charity ("Want to be a philanthropist? Give $1,000 a year"; last Wednesday).
 Raymond Anthony Fernando

16th Pacific Rim College of Psychiatrists Scientific Meeting

Posted on 26 May, 2014 admin

PRCP 2014 will be held on Oct 5-7, 2014 at Vancouver Canada. 2014 Theme is: “Building Capacity in Mental Health During Challenging Economic Times”. Find out more about the event at its official website

Parliament: 500 men a year exempted from NS due to mental health problems

Published on May 29, 2014 3:23 PM

Synthetic drug cases exploding in Asia-Pac: UN report

Thursday, May 29, 2014
The Straits Times
By Lim Yan Liang

Series on schizophrenia 1: The death that could have been avoided

May 28th, 2014 | by Trinity Chua
It was not long after, when Ganesh was serving his national service that his condition deteriorated. Magindren became worried.
“Ganesh went back to the camp on July 1. He texted me on July 3, ‘daddy don’t worry I am fine, I am in control.’”
But Magindren never saw his son again.

Series on schizophrenia 2: He saved his wife, but not his son

May 28th, 2014 | by Trinity Chua
Part 2 of our series on schizophrenia…
It was not only his son, NS man Ganesh Pillay, who suffered from schizophrenia. Magendran Reganathan’s wife is also afflicted. Now he wants his story to be heard and for people with mental illness to be treated with care and dignity. In his own words…

Series on schizophrenia Part 3: A doctor’s diagnosis and his mission

May 29th, 2014 | by Trinity Chua
“Doctor, you have educated me. You bothered to explain my mental illness to me, that it is just a biochemical imbalance. You told me not to be afraid, that there is hope.”

Series on schizophrenia 4: What happens in the military

May 30th, 2014 | by Trinity Chua
Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen said in Parliament yesterday that NS men with mental health disorders are monitored during their two-year stint.