New Conference Aims to Elevate the Future of Mental Health Care

January 20, 2017
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As many conferences do, the newest Psych Congress offering will feature educational sessions on a range of topics delivered by accomplished speakers. But with an innovative agenda and a focus on early career clinicians, Elevate by Psych Congress is aiming to deliver a one-of-a-kind experience.

“The focus is very much on cutting-edge information regarding psychiatric care. But there’s also a great deal of information offered regarding the abilities that we as emerging clinicians need to develop in order to lead a very successful practice,” said Rakesh Jain, MD, MPH, co-chair of Psych Congress.

Elevate, designed for clinicians practicing mental healthcare for 10 years or less, will be held March 3-5 in San Francisco, California. A faculty of 20 experts will present 25 educational sessions in a single track, enabling participants to attend each one.

Psych Congress co-chair Rakesh Jain on what sets Elevate apart from other psychiatric conferences:

“We will over the 3 days of this conference cover topics as varied as an in-depth look at glutamate all the way to practice management as well as looking at perspectives of dealing with stress, dealing with financial issues that come with running a practice and also learning to live well and flourish in a managed care environment,” Dr. Jain said.

The first day of the conference, themed “Discover,” will open with a multi-part deep dive into the neurobiology, diagnosis, and treatment of schizophrenia, delivered in 10- to 30-minute segments.

Afterwards, sessions lasting 45 or 60 minutes will cover scientific topics such as managing tardive dyskinesia, treating adult ADHD, and diagnosing and managing bipolar depression.

The conference’s Keynote Address wraps up the day. It will be given by Kevin Berthia, who nearly jumped off the Golden Gate Bridge in 2005, and Sgt. Kevin Briggs, the California Highway Patrol Officer who changed his mind in a 96-minute conversation.

Psych Congress co-chair Rakesh Jain on how Elevate will be different from Psych Congress:

­­The second day of Elevate, with the theme of “Advance,” kicks off with a “Meet the Mentors” Featured Session. The interactive panel discussion will include mental health professionals from a range of professional categories and practice settings. Many of the same professionals will be available for more intimate discussions during the hourlong “Elevate with the Experts” session later in the day.

The other sessions of the day will cover practical issues—such as working with families, burnout, making ethical decisions, and navigating social media—and tools that can be used in practice, from telepsychiatry and mobile apps to scales and screeners. These sessions will run for 30 minutes each.

The last day of the conference, dubbed “Transform,” will begin with a talk on the future of mental healthcare from Thomas Insel, MD, former director of the National Institute of Mental Health. He will explore how science and technology are changing the diagnosis, treatment, and monitoring of patients with mental health disorders.

Many of the day’s later sessions will focus on cutting-edge psychiatry topics, including psychedelics, the role of wellness, and emerging approaches for treating depression.

Psych Congress co-chair Rakesh Jain on how the Elevate agenda is unique:

Attendees will close the conference with a screening of a documentary, Unbroken Glass, and a Q&A session with the filmmaker, Dinesh Sabu. Sabu’s parents died when he was 6 years old, and he uncovered a family history of mental illness as he pieced together their story decades later.

Elevate will also include Innovation Theaters, an Exhibit Hall, meals, and networking activities. To register, visit or call (877) 878-3101. Early Bird rates expire January 30.

—Terri Airov