The WPA was established to promote the advancement of psychiatry and mental health for all citizens of the world. Existing since 1950 as a strong and credible voice for the profession, WPA is an association of national psychiatric societies. It continues to grow. Currently it has 138 member societies in 118 countries and represents more than 250,000 psychiatrists.
As a global association, WPA occupies a unique position. It supports and works with its Member Societies. It benefits from growing collaborative work with international agencies, leading non-government and civil society organisations and research institutions in many countries.
It has a formal relationship with the World Health Organization (WHO) and a joint work program with the WHO's Department of Mental Health.
The Association is stronger now than ever before. By harnessing the experience of professionals together with people with a lived experience of mental ill-health and their carers, the WPA network is much enhanced. A strong WPA makes for a strong advocate.
It is well placed to lead and contribute to efforts to tackle key problems and take opportunities related to the mental health of people globally. This applies especially to those facing circumstances of adversity, vulnerability and disadvantage.
New ideas, new discoveries, new ways of implementing advances and new technological solutions are fundamental to the work of modern 21st Century psychiatry. The Congress theme of innovation captures this imperative.
The World Psychiatric Association's Thematic Congress, Innovation in Psychiatry: Effective Interventions for Health and Society in Melbourne Australia, 25-28 February 2018.