Indian, US Depression Centers enter partnership

The National Network of Depression Centers NNDCSurendra Ullal
CHICAGO: The National Network of Depression Centers (NNDC) has joined forces with the National Network of Depression Centers India (NNDC– I) to help people who suffer from depression, bipolar disorder and other mood disorders in India.

An agreement signed July 9 recognizes NNDC-I as an affiliate member of NNDC, a nonprofit consortium of 25 leading clinical and academic institutes in the United States, plus affiliate members in Canada and Germany.

Loyola Medicine psychiatrist Murali Rao, MD, the founding chair of NNDC I said “We aim to bring mental health literacy to a population for whom the stigma of depression is the greatest obstacle to seeking treatment.”

Dr. Rao, who is from India, is chair of Loyola Medicine’s department of psychiatry and behavioral neurosciences and a nationally known expert on depression.

He was inspired by and modeled on its American counterpart. He explained that the two organizations share the same goals but the priorities are slightly different. “In the U.S., research and education come first, followed by reducing the stigma of depression,” Dr. Rao said. “NNDC-¬I focuses first and foremost on education and fighting stigma, with research an added component.”

The collaboration, Dr. Rao added, “will result not only in the exchange of scientific and academic resources, but in increased awareness of the need for education and research in the field of depression.”

Founded in 2008, the NNDC is dedicated to advancing research, treatment and public education regarding depression and bipolar disorder through comprehensive, multidisciplinary collaboration and nationwide networking of resources. Its mission is to reduce suffering among people with depression and bipolar diagnoses.

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