Ramunė Mazaliauskienė, Chairman of Nordic Psychiatric Associations.
My story at the Nordic Psychiatric Associations, at the Joint Committee as we called it at that time, started together with the story of Nordic Psychiatrist. And it was at Nordic Congress of Psychiatry, Tromso, Norway in 2012. Great surroundings, great company, and a great idea – to start something new that would be dedicated to all the members of the associations, both Nordic, and Baltic.
Since that time few chairmen have changed: Lise Lotte Riso Bergerlind (Sweden), Andres Lehmets (Estonia), Ulrik Malt (Norway). The story of Nordic Psychiatrist developed together with those outstanding people, creative and hard-working board, and together with the associations – Danish, Estonian, Finnish, Icelandic, Latvian, Lithuanian, Norwegian, and Swedish.
Today we can see that to have a journal was a very wise decision: in communication restricting covid times we have a voice that allows Nordic Psychiatric Associations to be heard.
Currently we are working on making the journal more accessible to our members and known among those who are not our members. The type of communication that we have cherished offers us this possibility.
At the beginning of May the board changed. And now there is time for two things: to thank the previous board members for what they have done, and to talk about what we will do next. Nordic Congress of Psychiatry in Helsinki will take place in a new, really challenging form this year, and many people have used lots of efforts to make it happen. Immediately after the end of the congress we will start planning the new one, this time in Latvia. The future congress is what the new board must plan and carry to life.
In addition to this, there is more to be done . One challenge is the availability of information. Our associations have representatives both in European Psychiatric Association, and in the World Psychiatric Association, so a lot of information will come from those sources. It is very important to share information among our associations – scientific, practical or on legislation issues. We must think how this could be done in the most efficient way. Our two journals – “scientific voice” Nordic Journal of Psychiatry and our “social voice”- Nordic Psychiatrist must be available to all our members.
What else? We must think about the education for our members. So, some new activities in between Nordic Congresses can be arranged; maybe it will be easier to organize big events and practice working together on smaller occasions. We must involve young psychiatrists as they will be those who will take flag and carry it into the future.
And we must invite and involve as many people as possible in our activities, just to be integrated, updated, and to have fun during those three years of a new stage of our activities.
And finally, we have to keep our identity being part of a very particular world, yet to be an integral part of a bigger world. And Nordic Psychiatrist is one of the tools to do that. □