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Revista Brasileira de Educação Médica

versão impressa ISSN 0100-5502versão On-line ISSN 1981-5271


GONCALVES, Rebeca Jesumary et al. Who "cares" about the psyche in medical school? The experience with the Mental Health League at the school of medicine, State University of São Paulo, Brazil. Rev. bras. educ. med. [online]. 2009, vol.33, n.2, pp.298-306. ISSN 1981-5271.

Considering the importance of mental health for general health practice, there has been an increasing demand by medical students for better training in this area. The main aim of the present article is to describe the experience of the Students' League on Mental Health (LISM) at the Botucatu Medical School, São Paulo State University (UNESP), in teaching mental health contents as extracurricular activities. The article describes the initial difficulties in the league's organization, as well as its structure and functioning and the main activities developed by the students since it was founded in 2004. The LISM has been successful in complementing medical training in this area, since it encompasses preventive and health promotion activities, including those targeting the students' own mental health. Some concerns regarding the role of students' leagues in mental health in medical schools are also discussed, including the risks of favoring early specialization in psychiatry, fueling the false dichotomy between physical and mental health, and simply reproducing regular curricular activities. These leagues should not discourage the academic community from struggling to value, integrate, and systematically include mental health themes in the official curriculum, which are indispensable to proper training of general practitioners.

Palavras-chave : Medical education; Mental health; Psychiatric disorders; Academic leagues.

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