The Northern Centre for Mood Disorders (NCMD) brings together those who are interested in advancing treatment and care in conditions such as depressive illnesses and bipolar disorders. Under the umbrella of NCMD clinicians and academics work together with those affected by mood disorders to conduct research and develop new treatment approaches. NCMD also hosts public engagement events to raise awareness of mood disorders. Experts from the centre are also active in developing a wide range of educational materials and in hosting regular educational events.
The first major goal of NCMD is to improve the care of patients with mood disorders. NCMD aims to achieve this through greater research into the underpinnings, and treatment of, mood disorders. In addition, NCMD will act as a focus for the development and implementation of cutting edge therapies and the development of optimised patient pathways. NCMD will have strong links with the Regional Affective Disorders Service (RADS) and the Specialist Adolescent Mood Disorders Service (SAMS) within NTW.
The second major goal of NCMD is to undertake cutting edge research in mood disorders. Current strengths within the Trust and the Newcastle University (particularly within the Institute of Neuroscience) will be enhanced through increased collaborative links both internally and externally. A key element of the strategy to increase national research funding will be the creation of large NCMD Research Register of individuals, both patients and healthy subjects, willing to take part in research. The aim to make NCMD one of the “go to” centres in the UK by funders such as the National Institute for Mental Health, when commissioning research.
The third major goal is education related to mood disorders. This third strand of activity will support the first two goals. NCMD will develop a strong and comprehensive educational portfolio aimed at health care professionals in both secondary and primary care. NCMD will also provide training and support for individuals wishing to develop their research skills or pursue an academic career. An additional important element of NCMD’s work will centre on public engagement. NCMD will host public educational events, starting this autumn, and have an active media presence. The aim is to break down stigma and increase awareness and understanding of mood disorders, fostering engagement with the design of research, as well as facilitating participation in research.