Vikram Patel receives award for mental health research

Vikram Patel, professor in the Department of Global Health and Population at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and Pershing Square Professor of Global Health in the Blavatnik Institute at Harvard Medical School (HMS), has received the 2019 John Dirks Canada Gairdner Global Health Award for his pioneering work in global mental health.

Patel’s research has shown that mental health problems are experienced everywhere, that they cause great harm, and that it’s possible to effectively treat people with mental illness even in regions with limited health and financial resources. He has championed the use of community health workers to deliver mental health care.

Patel’s achievement was celebrated at an April 23, 2019 reception at HMS. Ashish Jha, dean for global strategy at the Harvard Chan School, called Patel an important role model, according to an April 25, 2019 HMS article. “All of the important, easy stuff has been done,” Jha said. “One thing that Vikram has taught us is how important it is to do the hard work. If we’re going to move the needle on global health, there’s no substitute.”

Read the HMS article: Mental Health Breaks Through

Read a Harvard Gazette article about Patel’s award: Harvard scientists receive Canada Gairdner Awards