Black Psychiatrists
of America, Inc
Lifting Minds Since 1969
Black Family

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“Get a Check-Up from the Neck-Up” Program


The Black Psychiatrists of America (BPA), a medical association founded in 1969 to meet the professional needs as well as community needs of under-represented populations with particular emphasis relative to the African-American and African population groups. Due to the stigma with respect to Mental Illness and Mental Health, the BPA has undertaken a project in 2012 to increase mental health awareness in the African American Community that minimizes the stigma and negative attitudes that prevail in many areas across the United States of America. With this program entitled, “Get A Check-Up From The Neck-Up,” the association looks to educate the community at large as well as provide valuable resources towards making inroads into the correct and culturally competent diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation of those affected by mental disorders.


  1. To educate the community at large with respect to mental illness and mental well-being
  2. To facilitate dialogue within targeted communities regarding prevention as well as diagnosis and treatment of mental disorders
  3. To encourage the development of “self-help” groups and organizations around the issues of mental health and well-being within the African–American community at large
  4. To provide feedback to targeted communities in order to create positive actions relative to mental health advocacy


Six cities across the United States of America that are regional hubs for African-Americans are selected annually to be targeted for the outreach campaign. The Black Psychiatrists of America will have its regional membership partner with local area churches, fraternities, sororities, schools, and other community organizations to provide the following:

  1. Mental Health Screenings for Depression, Bipolar Disorder, PTSD and Anxiety Disorders (Adults, Children & Adolescents, & the Elderly)
  2. Facilitate the linkage of local area residents with culturally competent health care providers for mental health diagnostic and treatment services
  3. Health education information through conferences, seminars and written materials to the general community with respect to the various illnesses aforementioned as well as the development of prevention models and social support networks for mental well-being
  4. Conduct an ongoing evaluation of the program and needs assessments periodically to guarantee relevance with respect to the needs of the target populations


If you would like for your community to benefit from this mental health outreach awareness program and be considered for one of our target cities, please contact BPA through either Altha Stewart, M.D., Community Outreach Chairperson or Patricia A. Newton, M.D., MPH, M.A., Community Outreach Co-Chairperson at: 1-410-752-2943 respectively and provide your name, organization and contact information. An application form will be sent to your organization to complete, and final decisions for city selection are based on the following criteria:

  1. The interest of a local host organization in providing educational services about mental health
  2. Venue availability sponsored by the local host organization (church, school, etc.)
  3. Defined need for community education in a given locale regarding mental health diagnosis, treatment, and follow up
  4. Availability of mental health services in a given city for referral during both a crisis and ongoing treatment
  5. Willingness to participate in an ongoing programmatic evaluation to improve, enhance, and coordinate outreach services

The Black Psychiatrists of America will supply the educational content for the program and facilitate linkages with existing mental health resources in a given city as well as modify the community outreach process based on the defined needs of the community which may vary from city to city and are to be tailored to each community to maximize the services provided.

A final report will be generated for each selected destination so as to assist and facilitate ongoing advocacy for the mental health needs of the respective community.