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Milestones

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2016  The Centre for Life and Academic Skills that provides a conducive learning environment for child and adolescent inpatients was officially opened. This new facility was built with the generous sponsorship of S$122,000 from the Ronald McDonald House Charities Singapore.

IMH officially opened two new specialised wards − the Mood Disorders Unit Inpatient Service and the Early Psychosis Intervention Programme Inpatient Centre - that aim to make the environments more conducive for the treatment and recovery of the conditions of the patients.
2015 

The Well-being of the Singapore Elderly (WiSE) study conducted in 2013 was completed. This nationwide epidemiological study established the prevalence and factors associated with dementia and depression among those aged 60 years and above in Singapore. The study also examined the burden of dementia among the elderly in Singapore, its economic costs and caregivers’ burden associated with this condition.

2014 

The Singapore Mental Health Conference (SMHC) 2014 themed ‘Mental Health and Resilience: It Takes a Whole Community’, attracted some 500 professionals from the healthcare, social service, and Intermediate and Long-term Care sector, as well as community-based workers and consumers of mental health services. Since SMHC was first launched in 2013, it became a national platform for learning and networking.

The MINDSET Rehabilitation Gym was established with the support of funds raised by MINDSET Care Limited (“MINDSET”). It consists of a Sensory Integration Gym that offers sensory-based interventions and a Physical Exercise Gym used to conduct health management sessions for adult outpatients with psychiatric conditions.

IMH and A*STAR’s Genome Institute of Singapore researchers identified over 100 locations in the human genome associated with the risk of developing schizophrenia in what is the largest genomic study published on any psychiatric disorder to date. They were part of the Schizophrenia Working Group of the Psychiatric Genomics Consortium, and the study was part of the 5-year Translational Clinical Research in Neuroscience, funded by the National Research Foundation.

The research team embarked embarked on a two-year population-based study “Mind Matters: A Study of Mental Health Literacy” to better understand the mental health literacy of the Singapore population. This S$1.0-million study funded by the Ministry of Health (Health Services Research Competitive Research Grant) would generate critical knowledge to help identify and prioritise mental illnesses to be targeted for mental health promotion; identify existing gaps in mental health literacy as well as ascertain subgroups in the population that are particularly lacking in mental health literacy.

Demential-friendly wards were set up to treat dementia patients with severe Behavioural and Psychological Symptoms of Dementia. With new facilities and a garden, the wards were designed to provide a more healing environment for patient rehabilitation, with the intention of returning the patients back to the community.

2013 

The National Addictions Management Service (NAMS) introduced an acupuncture clinic to complement its existing psychiatric and psychological treatment programmes for addictions. It was a pilot service supported by the Ministry of Health under the Health Services Development Programme to study the benefits of acupuncture as an adjunct treatment to the existing treatment programmes that NAMS offered.

The institution held its inaugural Singapore Mental Health Conference to address changing mental healthcare needs. More than 300 local and overseas mental healthcare professionals and community service providers converged for the conference.

IMH inaugurated the “Asian Community Mental Health Leadership” Forum that was attended by over 80 leaders and officials from Thailand, Indonesia, China and Singapore. This was organised as part of the “Disaster Mental Health Programme for Communities in Asia” initiative that IMH and Temasek Foundation are jointly supporting with tertiary healthcare organisations in Thailand, China and Indonesia to develop a training programme to build the mental well-being and resilience of communities affected by disasters and crises.  

2012 

IMH launched a new initiative, the Singapore Schizophrenia Network (SSN), to bring together agencies involved in providing mental healthcare and support to persons who are affected by Schizophrenia.  

IMH embarked on a S$4.4-million three-year nationwide epidemiological study – Well-being of the Singapore Elderly (WiSE) – that aimed to establish high-quality data of the burden of dementia and depression among the elderly in Singapore and to bridge the knowledge gap on  the  associated risk factors, healthcare use and economic impact. It was a collaboration with international and local research investigators from Changi General Hospital, IMH, King’s College London, Ministry of Health, National University Hospital and Raffles Hospital. 

With the $1.96mil grant from the Temasek Foundation, Singapore, IMH launched collaborations with tertiary healthcare organisations in the region to develop a capacity-building programme in the area of mental well-being and resilience to support disaster-preparedness and recovery of Asian communities affected by disasters.   

IMH was the first mental health institution in the world to be awarded the American Nurse Credentialing Center’s (ANCC) Accreditation with Distinction, the highest accolade from ANCC, the world's largest and most prestigious nurse credentialing organisation that recognises healthcare organisations for promoting safe, positive work environments; and accredits continuing nursing education organisations.

The Positive Mental Health Instrument was developed as one of the first validated scale in Asia that measured the postiive mental health of the local population.

2011 

The Singapore Mental Health Study (SMHS) conducted in 2010 was completed. This nationwide epidemiological study spearheaded by IMH gave insight into some of the common mental illnesses in the adult Singapore resident population, the associated factors of these illnesses, the delay in seeking treatment, and the period of delay among those who eventually sought treatment.   

IMH clinched the inaugural Grand Award for the Hospital of the Year, a Winner award and two Excellence awards at the Asian Hospital Management Awards (AHMA) 2011. (The AHMA recognises and honours hospitals in Asia that carry out best practices.)

2010 

The CHAT (Community Health Assessment Team) was launched as part of the National Mental Health Blueprint to provide early detection and intervention for youths from Post-Secondary Education Institutions (PSEIs) and those who are out-of-school. Besides a one-stop centre located in the heart of Orchard Road that provides mental health resources, assessment and professional help, CHAT also developed an interactive portal (www.youthinmind.sg), which engages youths online.

IMH trained its first batch of General Practitioners (GPs) under the part-time Graduate Diploma in Mental Health (GDMH) programme, offered to local primary healthcare physicians. Jointly offered by the IMH and the Division of Graduate Medical Studies, National University of Singapore, this programme provides a comprehensive and structured training programme for GPs in psychiatry and counselling.

The National Addictions Management Service (NAMS) clinic, located at IMH, was officially opened. A national initiative funded by the Ministry of Health, NAMS was set up to provide specialised treatment services for patients with behavioural and substance addictions.

IMH established the first local Centre for Mental Health Education (CMHE), which provides mental health training and education for healthcare professionals, caregivers and the community. Equipped with the latest technologies, the CMHE also uses innovative teaching methodologies to enhance participants' learning.

A Memorandum of Understanding was signed to establish the Joanna Briggs Institute (JBI)–IMH Centre for Evidence Based Practices in Mental Health Care, located at the CMHE. IMH works closely with JBI to advance mental health evidence-based practices and research in the region.

2009 

The National Mental Health Blueprint was allocated an additional $35 million by the Ministry of Health (MOH), urging an inter-sectoral approach at the policy and operational level to look into aspects of education and prevention; early detection and treatment; and rehabilitation and reintegration.

IMH and the senior management at Secret Recipe collaborated to open a Secret Recipe outlet at IMH. This was to provide vocational training in the food and beverage industry and to create job opportunities for IMH patients.

The High Dependency Psychiatric Care Unit was established to provide close monitoring and management of acutely disturbed psychiatric and actively suicidal patients within a safe and secure environment.

ROC-N-ASH (www.roc-n-ash.com) portal was developed to allow children, parents, educators and caregivers to learn about anxiety management and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. The portal allows users access to resources, such as role-play computer games, multimedia learning content and video clips for treatment and continual education.

IMH bagged three awards in three separate categories at the Asian Hospital Management Awards, and it represented the highest number of awards won by a hospital for the year.

Job Club, a one-stop vocational rehabilitation service that helps persons with mental illness to select, secure and keep a job, was officially launched.

The Research Division undertook the Singapore Mental Health Study (SMHS), a nationwide epidemiological study that aimed to establish the mental health status of the adult Singapore resident population. This project brought together international and local experts in this field for an extensive and comprehensive assessment of the nation's mental health.

2008 

IMH commemorated its 80th anniversary with an "Ode to Wellness" charity concert that raised $310,000 for medical subsidies and rehabilitation programmes in aid of the long-stay patients and needy outpatients of IMH. IMH also launched a commemorative book, Heartening Minds, which provided insights on IMH’s vision and role in the nation’s mental health blueprint.

The inaugural Asia Pacific Psychiatric Rehabilitation Conference themed "Transforming Lives in Every Aspect of Our Work" was presented as part of IMH's 80th Anniversary Celebrations.

The Community Wellness Centre (CWC) was opened to provide a one-stop venue, focusing on the continuum of care from prevention to treatment and rehabilitation.

The Early Psychosis Intervention and Prevention (EPIP) programme received one of the inaugural National Medical Excellence Awards 2008, conferred by the Ministry of Health.

SWAP (Support for Wellness Achievement Programme) was launched at the CWC for individuals at risk of developing psychosis.

2007 

REACH was started in 2007 as a programme under the National Mental Health Blueprint, serving the mental health needs of children and adolescents of school-going age. The programme was led by IMH in collaboration with the Ministry of Education, voluntary welfare organisations, family doctors and the National Council of Social Services. 

A 23-hour observation ward was introduced at IMH/Woodbridge Hospital’s revamped emergency services to provide timely interventions in a safe environment to reduce unnecessary inpatient admissions.

A new Autism Clinic was established to treat children, above five years old, with suspected or diagnosed autism.

Multi-sensory therapy was introduced for elderly patients with dementia.

IMH won the most outstanding project award in the customer service category of the Asian Hospital Management Awards.

IMH successfully trained recovering patients who bagged the silver and bronze medals in the 7th International Abilympics, Japan.

The National Mental Health Blueprint was established by the Ministry of Health (MOH). With a reinvestment fund of $88 million over 5 years, its objective was to develop national capability in mental health services. IMH initiated a number of community-based programmes targeted at the three main population segments—children, adults and the elderly.

2006 

The Woodbridge Hospital campus was revamped into a new medical hub—Buangkok Green Medical Park.

IMH’s Early Psychosis Intervention Programme (EPIP) won the World Health Organisation State of Kuwait Prize for Research in Health Promotion for 2006.

Dignity Links Ltd (a social enterprise partner) set up Barista Express, an upmarket first-of-its-kind café in Singapore. Operating in a commercial district, this café provided people with psychiatric illnesses transitional supportive employment in a business enterprise.

Together with the Ministry of Health, IMH/Woodbridge Hospital implemented the Subutex Voluntary Rehabilitation Programme to help patients on Subutex wean off their dependence.

Launch of Digital Psychiatry 2009 vision to transform the delivery of psychiatry services for excellent patient care through the use of information technology, i.e. tele-consultation.

2005 

The Aged Psychiatry Community Assessment and Treatment Service (APCATS) was launched, providing medical team home visits for elderly patients with difficulty commuting to IMH/Woodbridge Hospital for their follow-up psychiatric treatment.

Milieu Therapy was introduced to all acute wards to help change the patient’s role from that of a passive recipient to that of an active participant of care.

The IMH-General Practitioner Partnership Programme was initiated to support our strategic initiative for the right siting of care. This programme aimed to provide affordable and convenient mental healthcare for stable patients with chronic mental illness through General Practitioners.

Fund-2-Work Scheme was launched to train recovered patients with appropriate skills that will help to integrate them back to society.

IMH/Woodbridge Hospital became the first mental health institution in Asia to receive the Joint Commission International accreditation, benchmarking its standards of care with international standards.

2004 

A Mobile Crisis Team was introduced by the Department of Community Psychiatry.

2003 

The Department of Community Psychiatry was established with community-based treatment provided by a multidisciplinary team of clinical staff.

2002 

A new specialist outpatient clinic was started to provide psychiatry services to non-subsidised patients in a private and conducive environment.

The Woodbridge Hospital Endowment Fund was set up to provide financial assistance to needy patients.

2001 

IMH collaborated with the Health Promotion Board to initiate the Mind Your Mind programme, a five-year public education programme with a focus on stress management.

IMH/Woodbridge Hospital embarked on a Stress Management Programme to serve the interests of our corporate clients.

The Community Addiction Management Programme (CAMP) was launched to provide treatment for various addictions, including substance and non-substance addictions. (CAMP was  replaced by the National Addictions Management Service (NAMS) in 2010.)

The Department of Academic Psychiatry was established.

The Early Psychosis Intervention Programme (EPIP) was introduced, offering holistic comprehensive and accessible service for those with early psychosis.

2000 

The satellite Behavioural Medicine Clinic was started at the Health Promotion Board Building in Outram to provide administrative support for the following clinics: Stress and Anxiety Disorders Clinic, Mood Disorders Clinic, Sleep Clinic, Psychotherapy Clinic and Weight Management Clinic.

IMH celebrated its new beginning as a restructured organisation under the National Healthcare Group.

The Living Room, a cafeteria, was created by the Occupational Therapy Department to facilitate rehabilitative activities for IMH/Woodbridge Hospital patients in a socially pleasant and friendly environment.

1998  

IMH/Woodbridge Hospital prepared for the implementation of a computerised Patient Administration System for outpatient and inpatient services and for ISO 9002 Quality Management System certification.

The Child Guidance Clinic (formerly known as the Child Psychiatric Clinic at Outram Road) moved to its new premises at the Institute of Health in March 1998. Two new clinics for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and Child Abuse were introduced.

1995  

IMH/Woodbridge Hospital started Emergency Psychiatry services to cater to those facing crises.

1994  

In conjunction with the Ministry of Home Affairs, IMH/Woodbridge Hospital organised the first Emergency Behaviour Officers course in Singapore. Its purpose was to train officers from the public sector and uniformed organisations in rendering psychological support and assistance in disaster situations.

1993  

Woodbridge Hospital shifted from its Yio Chu Kang premises to a new building at Hougang (30 hectares), thus ushering a new era in psychiatric care. To facilitate the efficient operation and implementation of the National Mental Health Programme, Woodbridge Hospital was re-organised and renamed as the Institute of Mental Health/Woodbridge Hospital (IMH/WH).

1990  

The first Cognitive Behavioural Therapy Clinic was started at the Tampines Clinic.

The Alcohol Dependency Clinic and Alcohol Treatment Programme commenced at Alexandra and Mandalay Day Centres, respectively.

1988  

A Community Psychiatric Nursing (CPN) service was established.

An evening clinic was started at Woodbridge Hospital.

1982  

Woodbridge Hospital started to provide specialist training leading to a Master of Medicine (Psychiatry) degree from the National University of Singapore.

1979  

Inauguration of the psychiatric nurse practitioners scheme to help with the increasing attendance at the outpatient clinics.

1978
 

Woodbridge Hospital celebrated its 50th anniversary.

1973  

The drug lithium was first used to treat manic-depressive illness; and modecate, a long-acting neuroleptic, was first used to treat schizophrenia.

1972  

The Child Psychiatric Clinic became a full-time department.

The first psychiatric day centre in Singapore was opened.

1965
 

A rehabilitation committee was formed.

1958  

Dr E.C. Winslow was appointed Medical Superintendent (Acting) and Dr Burton Bradley as Medical Superintendent (on contract).

The antidepressants isocarboxazide and imipramine were introduced.

1957
 

Outpatient clinics were started at Bukit Timah, Paya Lebar and Kallang Dispensaries.

1956  

Psychological services were started.

A new three-storey Nurse Hostel was built.

1954  

The Psychiatric School of Nursing was set up.

Penicillin was first used to treat neurosyphilis.

Construction of four new blocks of two-storey buildings (which later became the Chronic Sick Unit) and one new block (Green Groves).

1953
 

Woodbridge Hospital was recognised for its Conjoint Diploma in Psychological Medicine.

1951
 

The Mental Hospital was renamed Woodbridge Hospital.

1947
 

Dr B.F. Home introduced electroconvulsive therapy (ECT).

1946
 

The Mental Hospital returned to its original function to house 440 mental patients.

1942  

About 500 mental patients were transferred to St John’s Island before Singapore surrendered to the Japanese forces. After Singapore’s surrender, 800 civilian casualties were transferred to the Mental Hospital, which was transformed into the Japanese Civilian and Military Hospital.

1935
 

Doctors were given the power to admit patients and voluntary treatment was allowed.

1931
 

Malaria treatment was used to treat General Paralysis of the Insane (GPI) or neurosyphilis.

1928  

A new mental hospital, named ‘Mental Hospital’, was constructed and 1,030 patients were transferred there.

Dr E.R. Stone, Medical Superintendent from 1928 to 1934, introduced farm work in 1928.

A member of National Healthcare GroupWork Life Activeness AwardTUVTUVGold   Comm Chest Award 2012