Sidra Medicine Psychiatry Receives Prestigious Designation from World Psychiatric Association


QF Entity becomes World’s first WPA Collaborating Center designated for women and children

Sidra Medicine’s Department of Psychiatry has been designated as a Collaborating Center of the World Psychiatric Association (WPA) for child and adolescent psychiatry and in maternal and perinatal mental health. 

The WPA is a global organization representing 145 psychiatric societies in 121 countries and promotes collaborative work in psychiatry. WPA collaborating centers are institutions that have national, regional and international recognition as leaders in clinical care, research and teaching.  

“I would like to congratulate Sidra Medicine for receiving this prestigious designation as a WPA Collaborating Center”, said Professor Afzal Javed, President of the World Psychiatric Association. “It is my hope that the expertise from Sidra Medicine’s Department of Psychiatry will complement the WPA agenda of improving global mental health while also spearheading the efforts to improve the standards of mental health care. I am confident they will achieve this by advocacy and incorporating international guidelines for early identification and timely care to women, children and families in Qatar.” 

Sidra Medicine now joins the ranks as one of the eight WPA Collaborating Centers around the world, and the only one designated especially for women and children. It will partner with the WPA on a number of initiatives including policymaking and advocacy, aiming to improve the care of women, children and families. 

Sidra-Medicine Prof.-Muhammad Waqar-Azeem

Professor Muhammed Waqar Azeem, Inaugural Chair of the Department of Psychiatry at Sidra Medicine said: “I am very pleased that the WPA has recognized and honored Sidra Medicine’s reputation in advancing cutting edge research and healthcare and our work in advocacy, academia and the mental health care. I would also like to acknowledge the vital contributions of Drs. Felice Watt, Ahsan Nazeer, and Omar Mahmood, and their teams in making this designation possible for Sidra Medicine.”

“The collaboration with WPA will help improve the psychiatric care of children, adolescents and women in Qatar as well as at a regional level. It will also positively impact the advancement of the education and research efforts in this field as we share our insights, skills and expertise with our WPA peers globally. It is also worth mentioning in this regard that Sidra Medicine has the honor of having world’s first and only  Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Fellowship accredited by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education International (ACGME-I),” continued Prof. Azeem.

Dr. Barbro Friden

Dr. Barbro Fridén, Chief Executive Officer at Sidra Medicine said: “Sidra Medicine’s child and adolescent psychiatry and maternal and perinatal mental health divisions are top tier services in Qatar. It is a huge honor for the Department of Psychiatry at our organization to be recognized globally as a WPA Collaborating Center for children and women’s mental health. This is very much aligned with our organization’s vision of being the beacon of learning, discovery and exceptional care, ranked among the top academic medical centers in the world.”

“The impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on mental health and the wellbeing of families is becoming increasingly evident, and this impact is likely to increase and endure longer than the pandemic itself. Opportunities such as this collaboration to engage internationally in research, development and the sharing of evidence-based treatments helps to strategically advance care without duplication of effort and for the benefit of all. Qatar is a highly multi-national society, mirrored in the composition of Sidra Medicine staff and patients. Our collaboration with WPA, strategically echoes opportunities to learn from and benefit the advancement of mental healthcare across culturally and geographically diverse nations,” concluded Prof. Azeem.