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Role Players 2023

Dr. Pratima Murthy

Director, National Institute of Mental Health and Neuro Sciences (NIMHANS)

Dr. Pratima Murthy, Director, National Institute of Mental Health and Neuro Sciences (NIMHANS), Bangalore, India, has over three decades of experience in the field of mental health. She is an alumnus of the Bangalore Medical College. She completed her Diploma and MD in Psychiatry from NIMHANS and has a Diploma in Psychological Medicine from the University of Manchester, UK. She is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians, Glasgow, UK. She has earlier served as Professor and Head of the Department of Psychiatry at NIMHANS, Head of the Centre for Addiction Medicine, Head of Forensic Psychiatric services and chair of psychotherapy. She is a recipient of the World Health Organization Regional Director's special appreciation award 2021 for promoting tobacco cessation and control, the Raja Ramanna Award in for excellence in Science for outstanding contribution to science and society from the Govt of Karnataka in 2019, the Marfatia Award and the Tilak Venkoba Rao Oration awards of the Indian Psychiatric Society. She is the recipient of the "Rotary Lifetime Achievement Award in the field of De-Addiction" in 2020. She has undertaken several consultancies and assignments with several international organizations like the World Health Organization, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, the International Labor Organization and other agencies. She is an international consultant to the World Health Organization for the mH gap in mental health and addictions. She has also provided consultancy to the National Human Rights Commission, been a member of many task forces at the national level and served on several intramural committees of NIMHANS and extramural committees at the national level.

Professor Murthy has contributed to public policy in the fields of mental health, addictions and integration of mental illness with non-communicable diseases. Through her work on the human rights of persons with mental illness, she has contributed significantly to mental hospital reform and the programmatic expansion of mental health care in the country. She has also been involved in improving institutional mental health care for women through her work with the National Commission for Women. As head of the forensic psychiatry services and been involved in improving mental health care in prison and other custodial settings. She has also been involved in documentation of the history of NIMHANS and history of the development of mental health services in India.

Dr. Murthy's has made a seminal contribution in the area of addiction for over three decades in the areas of clinical care, training, research and policy. This has included building up and expanding the services for addiction management, setting up a toxicology laboratory, developing workplace interventions for drug use prevention, initiating post graduate DM and PDF addiction programmes, involvement in research and contribution to policy in the area. She has been involved in digital training and tele-health, through which she has provided expertise for the mCessation and tobacco quitlineprogrammes in the country. She has been involved in about 40 research projects, guided more than 50 dissertations of postgraduate students in MD, DM and PhD courses and has about 250 peer reviewed publications.