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Prague Chapter


Prague Chapter

National Institute for Mental Health and the Centre for Mental Health Care Development form the Prague Chapter








Department of Social Psychiatry, National Institute of Mental Health, Czech Republic (NIMH CZ), is a brand new department established in January 2015, and a successor of Laboratory of Social Psychiatry of the former Prague Psychiatric Centre. The department is a key partner of Ministry of Health for the ongoing mental health care reform in the Czech Republic. Except of Ministry of Health, department closely collaborates with the Czech Institute for Health Information and Statistics, providers of community mental health care, mental hospitals, users’ and parents organization, as well as academia – 3rd Medical Faculty, Faculty of Arts, and Faculty of Science, Charles University, Prague. Department employs more than 30 researchers who have background in psychology, sociology, public health and other social sciences. These researchers are working within six working groups: Psychiatric Epidemiology; Mental Health Economics; Research on Stigma and Discrimination; System, Service and Intervention Research; Suicide Research and Prevention; Multi-disciplinary Studies in Social Psychiatry.

Centre for Mental Health Care Development is an NGO that since 1995 strives for destigmatization and development of community oriented services, it participates on mental health reform in the Czech Republic and implements innovative projects with partners in the country and from abroad.


The team of the Centre is passionate about bringing effective approaches like for instance FACT model, IPS, Dual diagnosis treatment or Shared decision making into practice.

The Centre is a respected partner during negotiations about development of strategy of deinstitutionalisation. The educational institute aims at providing highest quality courses for social and health community workers. During last three years the Centre became a leading institution in successfully involving experts by experience into mental health teams and lecturing future mental health professionals at universities.


Dr. Petr Winkler is the head of the Department of Social Psychiatry at the NIMH CZ. Petr is a member of all the working groups that have been established to translate the Czech mental health care reform strategy into a specific plan. His publication record in peer-reviewed international journals includes papers on various topics related to social psychiatry, such as suicides, stigma, system research etc. Petr is also an author of the book The Reform of Mental Health Care: International Policy, Experiences, and Recommendations, which has become central for the Strategy of Mental Health Care published by the Czech Ministry of Health in 2013.

Dr. Dana Chrtková is a researcher at the Department of Social Psychiatry at the NIMH CZ. Dana has a personal experience with mental health disorder and as such she is very interested in the problematics of user-led research and destigmatization of persons with mental health problems. Dana strongly believes in philosophy of recovery which she understands as a chance to live full personal and professional life. “Everybody who decides to follow the way of recovery can recognize the beauty of life. Recovery is the way to understand oneself and other people. This way is not easy but it is very interesting.  People on the road to recovery need support from their relatives, their friends and from their psychiatrists. The attributes of such help change during time, but it is necessary for us all to cooperate in a friendly atmosphere without any coercion”, she says.

Pavel Říčan is a sociologist, a lecturer and a rehabilitation trainer with almost 20 years of experience in community mental health services. Since 2014 he is a director of Centre for Mental Health Care Development. His main interest lies in how to make a recovery journey practically available for people with mental health problems. He personally believes in potential of mutual respect and working together. Pavel is married and has 5 children who are important source of his mental health. In his scarce free time he likes to horse ride and to hike.