APRO Masters in Medicine (Psychiatry) Student Support Scheme

In 2013 the African Psycare Research Organisation (APRO) started a scheme to support the training of psychiatrists in Uganda. Under this scheme, young doctors with a desire to further their training in mental health are awarded scholarships to support their masters in medicine (psychiatry) at the Department of Psychiatry, Makerere University. These scholarships come in two levels, a full scholarship (that pays tuition, stipend and funds to support research) and a partial scholarship (that only provides funds for research). To date we have supported 17 students. The APRO Masters in Medicine (Psychiatry) Student Support Scheme is headed by Professor Noeline Nakasujja, below are biographies of beneficiaries of this scheme.

ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR NOELINE NAKASUJJA

Head APRO Masters Student Support Scheme

Noeline Nakasujja Associate Professor of Psychiatry in Uganda. She is serving Chair for the Department of Psychiatry at the College of Health Sciences, Makerere University. Her research interests include geriatric psychiatry and cognitive impairment in HIV/AIDS.

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She received her Bachelor’s in Medicine/Surgery and her Masters’ degrees in Psychiatry from Makerere University Medical School. She completed her PhD studies and received a joint degree from Makerere University and Karolinska Institute, Sweden

She has served on a number of associations including the International Psycho-geriatrics Associations, the World Psychiatric Association, Association of Uganda Women Doctors. She is the president of The Uganda Society for Health Scientists and Chair for the Community Care for the Elderly task force of The Network: Towards Unity for Health (TUFH).

Her work has focused on neurocognitive assessments across the life span as well as other areas in the field of psychiatry. She is currently a principal investigator on a study evaluating the stress and caregiver burden of individuals looking after patients with Alzheimer’s disease in the community.
Prof Nakasujja is the first female psychiatrist in Uganda and been honored with a number of awards that include: British Royal College of Psychiatrists student travel award, Uganda Medical Association best researcher, The International Psychogeriatrics Association Young Investigators award for Outstanding research endeavors undertaken in a previously unresearched field. She has also received awards for Best Presenter oral and poster by young psychiatrists in Addis Ababa Ethiopia. She has received recognition for; Outstanding mentor for the American Academy of Child and Adolescent psychiatry, scientific achievements from the Uganda Society for Health Scientists 2010, Center for AIDS research award for best poster 2016 and was the recipient of the James Kimani award 2017, Society of Neuroscientists of Africa

Beneficiaries - APRO Masters Student Support Scheme

Dr Emmanuel Mpamizo

I am Dr Emmanuel Mpamizo, was a beneficiary of this scholarship scheme from 2014 to 2017. Through this scholarship I was able to have my tuition paid, obtain a modest monthly stipend as well as undertake my research project. This enabled me successfully complete my master’s degree in medicine (psychiatry). I feel highly indebted to APRO. I am currently working as a lecturer in the Faculty of Medicine at Gulu University where I teach psychiatry and other mental health related subjects such as psychology. My current interests are in anxiety, substance abuse and I also working with colleagues to bring mental health awareness to the masses through social media.

Dr Emmanuel Mwesiga

Dr Emmanuel Mwesiga, a beneficiary of this scholarship scheme was able to successfully complete his masters in medicine (psychiatry) in 2017. He then joined the Department of Psychiatry, Makerere University as an assistant lecturer and has since been promoted to the rank of lecturer. Dr. Mwesiga is in the final year of his doctoral degree from the University of Cape Town in South Africa and hopes to graduate in the fall. His doctoral degree involves utilizing mobile technology to improve assessment for cognitive impairment in patients with psychotic disorders. He has nine publications, six as first author and one book chapter. He has been awarded two training grants from the National Institutes of Health and an early career travel award by the World Psychiatry Association. In 2018, Dr. Mwesiga was selected as a pioneer fellow of a neuropsychiatric genetics training program based at Harvard School of public health. In 2018 he was one of the recipients of the Global Fogarty fellowship.

Dr Benedict Akimana

I am Dr Benedict Akimana a recipient of the African Psychcare Research scholarship for the period between 2013 and 2016. This scholarship enabled me to achieve my dream of becoming a mental health advocate, a Psychiatrist. I am forever indebted to the steering team that selected me for this award. I am currently working as a Psychiatrist at the Butabika National Referral Mental Hospital.

Sr Ritha Binduru

I am Sr Ritha Binduru (with a veil on my head), I appreciate the support given to me by the African Psychcare Research that enabled me undertake the three years course in masters of medicine (psychiatry) between 2015 to 2018. I am currently employed as a psychiatrist and Head of Department Mental Health at Arua Regional Referral hospital.

Dr Kyohangirwe Leticia

I am Dr Kyohangirwe Leticia, a beneficiary of the African Psychcare Research scholarship offered between the years 2015 to 2018. It was because of this support that I was able to have my tuition paid as well as research funds to enable me complete a master’s degree in medicine (Psychiatry). I am forever grateful. I am currently working as a scientist and a project leader of the HIV+D Mental Health Section at MRC/UVRI & LSHTM Uganda Research Unit, Entebbe. I am also working as a Psychiatrist at Butabika National Referral Mental Hospital. My current interest is in primary care for mental health.

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