The Future of the Mental Health Awareness Task Force
In recognition of Mental Health Awareness Month, the Mental Health Awareness Task Force (MHATF) convened on May 10 to discuss future campaigns and action. Calli Shardein, OMS-III and COSGP National 2nd Vice Chair, summarized the meeting:
“This past Wednesday I attended a meeting with the regional coordinating student ambassadors for the Mental Health Awareness Task Force. During the meeting, I was introduced to the students that have worked diligently the last year to promote mental health awareness for medical students and to challenge the stigma surrounding mental illness affecting medical professionals. In celebration of National Mental Health Month, the ambassadors intend to roll out a social media awareness campaign focusing on the power each student has to make a positive and impactful change and to empower students by letting their own stories be heard. Over the last year, the regional ambassadors have worked with students from each of the osteopathic colleges to accumulate a list of “best practices” of mental wellness occurring at their respective campuses. Once compiled, we hope to have the ability to disseminate the information to give access to campuses across the nation.
In the next year, we hope to inspire greater engagement with medical students and encourage more outreach campaigns both through social media and at a local level at our respective schools. The regional ambassadors are also planning an in-person meeting during the upcoming year and intend to work more closely with the Council of Osteopathic Student Government Presidents and the Student Osteopathic Medical Association.
I am thrilled to join this team of innovative students and look forward to a productive year of empowerment and positive change.”
Osteopathic Students Take Action to Raise Awareness of Mental Health and Well-Being
AACOM’s Council of Student Government Presidents (COSGP) and the Student Osteopathic Medical Association (SOMA) created the Mental Health Awareness Task Force
in February of 2016 in order to promote emotional and psychological well-being among health care professionals. Osteopathic medical students (OMS) have since raised awareness of the 400 physicians that commit suicide each year with the Save400
campaign, spearheaded a landmark survey
of DO student mental well-being, and led two successful OMS Day of Wellness
May is Mental Health Awareness Month
Mental Health America (MHA) has observed Mental Health Awareness Month in May since 1949. The advocacy campaign has since grown to reach millions of people through media, local events, and screenings. The educational topic of MHA for 2017 is “Risky Business
.” Watch MHA’s 2017 video
to discover what you can do for Mental Health Month.