Dr Sepehr Hafizi CLAHRC Fellow 2013

Improving patient care via high quality Continuing Professional Development (CPD) programmes in psychopharmacology and neuroscience

Dr Sepehr Hafizi’s CLAHRC fellowship project is aimed at evaluating and creating high quality psychopharmacology and neuroscience programmes for the continuing professional development (CPD) of busy mental health professionals around the world leading to better patient care.

The CPD programmes consist of interactive online modules and live conferences. The online programmes are based on material provided by the Neuroscience Education Institute (NEI). The NEI was founded by the world-renowned psycho-pharmacologist Professor Stephen Stahl who is also an honorary member of the Psychiatry faculty at Cambridge University.

The online education contains a Masters Programme in psychopharmacology with fellowship activities. These include animations, snippets of lectures, journal articles and case studies and cover a range of topics: Basic Neuroscience; Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder; Anxiety Disorders; Bipolar Disorder; Dementia / Cognitive Disorders; Pain; Psychosis; Sleep Disorders; Substance Use Disorders; Unipolar Depression; Professional Improvement.

As part of the CLAHRC project, Dr Sepehr Hafizi has carried out the first tier of evaluation of the online course on about 200 fellowship activities and exam questions and has created a report with recommendations. The aim of the next step of the project is for Cambridge-based experts to provide the second tier of evaluation for the development of the online programme and eventual endorsement and accreditation by Cambridge University Health Partners (CUHP). This is to allow a more global and international reach for the programme.

The online programme is supported by live conferences at Cambridge University. The first conference in April 2013 was endorsed by CUHP and was very well-attended and was highly successful. This is to be followed by another conference in Cambridge in 2014.