top of page

Join us to celebrate the World Mental Health Day 2023

Welcome to the World Mental Health Day 2023 celebration! Today, we gather together as a community to raise awareness on physiotherapy, an often ignored component of mental health. Let us not overlook the critical role that physical health plays in this relationship as we work to promote awareness about the importance of mental well-being. Mental and physical health are deeply connected, and physiotherapy acts as a connection between both. It promotes overall wellbeing such as by lowering stress, anxiety, and depression. Let us work together to promote comprehensive mental health, highlighting the importance of mental health physiotherapy, and cultivating a caring, supportive community. We can work together to reduce stigma and create a healthier and happier planet. #MentalHealthPhysiotherapy #WorldMentalHealthDay2023

And in this celebration, we kindly invite you to to the following:


Hybrid Session on Mental Health Physiotherapy in the European Parliament

Organised by the European Region of World Physiotherapy, the European Parliament holds a session where Members of the European Parliament together with the Mental Health Working Group of European Region of World Physiotherapy will present and discuss the field of mental health physiotherapy.

Wednesday 11 October 14:00 - 15:30 CEST (online and in-person)


Hong Kong:

On 12 August 2023, Hong Kong Physiotherapy Association Mental Health W/G, in collaboration with the Tung Wah College Physiotherapy Programme and the Hong Kong Mental Health Association, organized a 60th Anniversary Hong Kong Physiotherapy Association Public Talk on the Mental Health. The theme was “How Physiotherapy could improve Mental Health”.

The objective of the talk was to raise public awareness, knowledge, and skills that physiotherapy could improve mental health through body awareness, exercise, and education.

Experienced physiotherapists shared their knowledge, skills and experience on the “Mental Health Physiotherapy”, “5 Steps to Mental Well-being”, “Community Home-based Strengthening Exercise for Mental Health Care”, “Breathing Control and Body Image Care” and “Sleep Disorders and its Management”. Five physiotherapy students assisted in the conduction of the activity. Over 70 participants joined the activity with good feedback.



The APA Scientific Conference, Ignite2023, was successfully held from October 4-7 in Brisbane. The Mental Health Program consisted of workshops, key-note presentations and scientific papers.

Pre-conference workshops included:

Mental Health in the Workplace (Presenters Roslyn Miller, Ellen Lake, Dr. Jo Connaughton)

Participants heard from the Queensland Workplace Regulator regarding the new Psychosocial Code of Practice in Australia, discussed Work-Integrated Self-Care and practiced conversations with colleagues regarding mental health and well-being.

Trauma Informed Care (Presenters Des O’Shaughnessy, Ellen Lake, Michele Sterling, Melanie Block, Lester Jones).

Presenters discussed principles of Trauma Informed Care Physiotherapy, Vicarious Trauma and vulnerable populations including whiplash-associated disorder (WAD) and refugees and survivors of trauma.

Presenters: Des O’Shaughnessy, Ellen Lake, Michele Sterling, Melanie Block, Lester Jones.

Presentations and papers included:


1. Lifestyle Medicine Dr. Sam Manger

2. Trauma Informed Care In Physiotherapy- Sophie Heywood. Sophie and her team at St. Vincent’s Hospital, Melbourne, are developing online modules to support physiotherapists in embracing Trauma Informed Care.

3. Vestibulo-cortical stimulation, chronic pain and emotional health – Dr. Trung Ngo


1. Assessing biopsychosocial impairments in Achilles Tendinopathy – Peter Malliaris.

2. The many different forms of patient distress: an emotional challenge for physiotherapists – Ryan McGrath

3. Using a virtual group-based reflective practice framework to explore psychologically challenging aspects of care in a tertiary hospital – David Priddle.

Other Activities

1. The APA Mental Health NSW Branch contributed to the APA October InMotion with their article “Approaching mental health with empathy”.

2. On October 16th, APA representative Ellen Lake attended the Black Dog Digital Mental Health Policy Forum in Canberra.

Digital mental health tools present an opportunity to optimise the capacity of the current clinical workforce to meet increasing demand.

This forum discussed the use of technology in building resilience and the rise of AI in mental health.

New Zealand:

We are a special interest group as a part of our national body, Physiotherapy New Zealand. The New Zealand relationship with the Treaty of Waitangi means that we have a focus on bi-cultural awareness with sensitivity to the specific needs of our Māori community. We apply the Te Whare Tapa Wha model of care with the holisitic approach to our assessment and management.

Our funding system is divided between those who have sustained mental injury from an external force by the Accident Compensation corporation with community care; and The ministry of Health, Te Wahtu Ora also with hospital care.

We hold a case study approximately every 3 months where a physio shares their experience with one patient’s journey. This is a forum to share what went well or to find support or direction where there were perhaps difficulties. We also have speakers who present topics of interest to our members; a face book page for members as a communication forum; and provide articles in our national body journal.

We have held high level discussions with the primary funder about our concern that the recognition for the physical aspects associated with mental injury were not being funded following referrals. To date; outcomes have been disappointing; however, we will continue with this challenge.

During a recent national disaster, we offered free relaxation experiences, delivered over video platform, to all physiotherapists across New Zealand to help cope with strong feelings of stress.

Our vision is that we can promote access; a service towards good mental health; and the prevention of poor mental health for the people of New Zealand. Also, to care for the mental health of colleagues; and to make a contribution with our international community of physiotherapists in mental health.



The Mexican Association of Physiotherapy in Mental Health (AMEFISAM) recognizes the pressing issue of mental health problems as a significant public health concern. These conditions carry a heavy societal and financial burden due to their widespread prevalence, comorbidity, and years of disability they entail, thereby straining government health budgets.

Considering the varied age groups affected and the distinct impact on each, as well as the differing prevalence of mental health disorders, preventive, educational, and therapeutic measures become pivotal. For instance, elderly individuals face vulnerability to mental health issues, including the tragic risk of suicide, alongside cognitive decline that places burdens on caregivers and the healthcare system.

Many mental health disorders manifest in childhood, necessitating lifelong treatment, resulting in significant suffering and stigma for patients and heightened stress for parents. In adolescents, anxiety, depression, and stress disorders prevail, while eating disorders, behavioral issues, schizophrenia, and substance abuse are also pertinent concerns.

Mental Health Physiotherapy (MHPT) offers valuable contributions in this context, yet it remains relatively unknown in many American countries. MHPT employs diverse techniques aimed at comprehensive patient care, effectively alleviating symptoms and enhancing individuals' quality of life.

In commemoration of Mental Health Day 2023, AMEFISAM proudly presents the "2nd International Conference in Physiotherapy in Mental Health," scheduled from November 8 to 11, this year. The event will feature a hybrid format, with sessions conducted via Zoom from the 8th to the 10th and an in-person gathering on November 11.

This conference targets healthcare professionals interested in this field, boasting a four-day program with distinguished national and international multidisciplinary speakers renowned for their academic prowess. By addressing current issues in children, adolescents, and adults, the conference aims to underscore the significance and applications of Physiotherapy in Mental Health.

For more information, please visit Join us in our mission to elevate awareness and understanding of mental health through the invaluable contributions of Physiotherapy.


bottom of page