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Speeches

Recovery Services & Policy 4.0 Conference

(11 January 2018)

 Opening Remarks by Prof Sophia CHAN,

Secretary for Food and Health

Prof. William HAYWARD (Dean of Social Sciences), Prof. Larry DAVIDSON (Yale University, Keynote speaker of the Conference), Prof. Mike SLADE (University of Nottingham, Keynote speaker of the Conference), Prof. Samson TSE (Co-chairperson of the Programme Committee of the Conference), Dr KF CHUNG (Co-chairperson of the Programme Committee of the Conference), Members of the Programme Committee, distinguished guests, friends, ladies and gentlemen,

              Good morning.  It is my pleasure to join you at today’s “Recovery Services & Policy 4.0 Conference”.

 2.          As stated by the World Health Organization (WHO), there is “no health without mental health”. The Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region attaches great importance to the mental well-being of the public and recognizes that mental health goes beyond medical care.

3.         The Government adopts an integrated and multi-disciplinary approach towards mental health, including promotion, prevention, early identification, as well as timely intervention and treatment, and rehabilitation for persons in need. From self-care, primary care and community support to specialist care and institutionalised services, the Government seeks to provide comprehensive and cross-sectoral services to persons with mental health needs through engagement and support of patients and carers, healthcare, social welfare and legal professionals, and stakeholders in the community.  We also enlisted the collaboration and cooperation among relevant bureaux/departments, the Hospital Authority, academic institutions and organisations/associations in the healthcare, social welfare and education sectors.

4.          It is the Government’s policy direction to encourage community support and ambulatory services, coupled with necessary and essential institutionalised services, so as to build a mental-health friendly society, facilitating re-integration into the community.

5.          As many of you may be aware, the Government embarked on a Review on Mental Health (“the Review”) in 2013 with a view to mapping out the future direction for development of mental health services in Hong Kong.  The Review was completed in last April with the publication of the Mental Health Review Report (“the Review Report”).  The Report puts forward 40 recommendations covering the various aspects of mental health needs, support for families and carers, as well as the mental well-being of the general public.  Many of the recommendations are being implemented over the course of the Review, and relevant Government bureaux/departments will follow up on the rest of the recommendations as appropriate.

6.          In November last year, the Government set up the standing Advisory Committee on Mental Health (“the Advisory Committee”) and its first meeting has already been held last month.  The Advisory Committee comprises members from various sectors with a great wealth of expertise and experience including professionals from the healthcare, social service and education sectors, representatives from patient and carer advocacy groups, and lay persons with interest in mental health.  The Advisory Committee will, among others, advise the Government on mental health policies, including the establishment of more integral and comprehensive approaches to tackle multi-faceted mental health issues in Hong Kong.  

7.          Today, we are glad that distinguished keynote speakers from all over the world, as well as researchers, practitioners, individuals with live experience of mental health issues have participated in the conference.  The event provides an excellent platform for the sharing of best practices and experience on enhancing recovery-oriented mental health services.  I trust that our professionals will learn deeper about recovery-oriented practices and have new perspectives on the future development of mental health services here in Hong Kong.

8.          I would like to take the opportunity to thank the Department of Psychiatry and the Department of Social Work and Social Administration of the University of Hong Kong for putting together this meaningful event today which allows the exchange of ideas among professionals from various sectors.  I wish the Conference every success and everyone a fruitful discussion. Thank you.

W3C