Monthly archives "May"

5 Articles

Message from newly elected MAPN President

During this year’s MAPN conference, several mental health professionals presented research done by themselves.  It was remarkable how much research was conducted on this island, but it was also remarkable how many dedicated professionals there are in the mental health field!

Doing research is not easy. It can be laborious and daunting. However research can provide interesting and valuable knowledge to our profession. It shows dedication, and it can help us think and reflect on what we are doing, what we need to change or improve and what is working or not.

Psychiatric nursing is not your run of the mill job. It requires dedication, commitment and a particular interest in helping people whom others will run away from. And this is not easy. But it could be that sometimes we forget this.

As a psychiatric nurse who has been in the field for the last 18 years, I have seen the psychiatric mental health nursing profession in Malta emerging, flourishing and thriving. MAPN was an important milestone in this journey.  MAPN provided a structure to mental health nursing, a community that nurses could affiliate with, it provided an identity to the profession and served as a platform for training, networking and professional development.

However, there is still more to be done. There is still a lot of negativity surrounding mental health which is leaving its toll on mental health nursing and yes, there are challenges and difficulties which are still holding us back. But I believe that each and every one of us can help to improve our profession. Nurses need to be empowered and focus on how they can effect and instil change on an individual basis, with patients in their day to day work, in management and in education. Nurses need to acknowledge and appreciate the work that they do, for their esteem, for the improvement of the profession and for the good of the patients.

Whether through reassuring a patient who has just been admitted to hospital, educating patients about their medication, liaising with management to improve standards of care, teaching students about evidence based practice or discussing risk assessment with a colleague, we are improving the values of our profession. And this is important. Our profession is a significant part of our life. We dedicated time, energy, commitment and sometimes sacrificed our personal life to it. It is part of our identity…and it is something we should be proud of.

I would like to conclude by thanking the previous council members, namely Mr. Kevin Gafa as the previous president and Mr. Antonio Magro who has been part of MAPN since its inception, for their work and contribution in the last 10 years. I would also like to introduce the recently elected council who are committed to continue on the good work of the last decade.  We look forward to work with you and will be very pleased to hear your comments, suggestions and any issues you feel are important for the psychiatric mental health nursing in Malta.

Pierre Galea

MAPN council 2016

Message from Outgoing MAPN President

I personally find it truly hard to believe that it’s already been a decade since the Maltese Association of Psychiatric Nurses was launched and that yesterday marked the last day for me as President of the association. Throughout the years we’ve kept ourselves extremely busy, which probably explains why ten years seem to have passed in the blink of an eye. It takes a collective effort to make an association like ours function efficiently, and I think it is only fair that special thanks go out to all the council members who throughout the years served on the MAPN board. I will not mention anyone in particular for the simple reason that everyone gave his/her utmost and is therefore deserving of praise.

The past ten years were only possible because the council members and general members believed in MAPNs’ cause and chose to be part of an association which safeguards their profession and promotes mental health. I hope that everyone keeps seeing the value in having such an association. It is evident that the MAPN has managed to achieve its original goal during the first ten years of its existence – that of becoming an important stakeholder in the local Mental Health field. Nowadays Malta is being referred to as one of the European countries with the fastest growth in terms of qualified psychiatric mental health nurses. While this situation cannot be entirely attributed to the MAPN, we believe that our part was pivotal in achieving this milestone.

I would like to take this opportinity to thank all members of the MAPN for allowing me to serve as president over the past ten years. It has been an honour, a joy, and an experience that I will forever cherish. I have met many dedicated colleagues and forged long lasting friendships. I sincerely wish the best of luck to the new council particularly to Pierre Galea as newly elected President, Alexei Sammut (Vice President), Mark Vassallo (Secretary), Roberto Galea (Treasurer), Bernice Gauci (Vice Secretary), Sarah Ebejer (PRO), Julie Stevenson (International Advisor), Maria Sapiano & Damian Gouder (General Committee Members). I look forward to seeing the MAPN growing even further and achieve more in the coming years.

Love & Respect

Kevin Gafa’

New MAPN Logo Launched

11th May 2016 marks the 10 year anniversary since the launching of the Maltese Association of Psychiatric Nurses. During a conference organised by the MAPN on May 2nd & 3rd a new Logo was launched. The new logo symbolises the evaluation of the association throughout the 10 years of its existence. The logo was selected by a good number of submissions following the logo competition and was designed by Mr. Conrad Bondin.

New MAPN Logo

‘Stocktaking’ in Local Mental Health Research 2nd & 3rd May 2016

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On Monday 2nd & Tuesday 3rd May 2016, The Maltese Association of Psychiatric Nurses (MAPN) organised a conference at the Dolmen Hotel in which the latest local research performed in Malta in the field of Mental Health was presented.

The explicit aims of the conference was to stimulate Maltese researchers to present their studies in a national conference and encourage the growth of Mental Health research in Malta.

Click on the below links to download the PDF format of the presentations:

Anthony Scerri – ‘Stocktaking’ in dementia research in Malta

Alexei Sammut – The attitudes of Maltese Nurses towards mental health service users

Chantelle Magri – The routine use of anticholnergics and depot antipsychotics

Chantelle Magri – The routine use of anticholnergics and depot antipsychotics Cheryl Brace – Exploring the occupational performance issues that clients with bipolar disorder encounter in relation to employment

Damian Gouder – From student to practitioner – a grounded theory exploration of transition to practice of newly qualified mental health nurses

Damian Spiteri – The Caritas Thursday club experience

Dr. John Cachia – On the Rights of Persons with Mental Disorders

Ian Baldacchino – Evaluation of referral tickets for acute psychiatric admissions

Isaura Camilleri – The lived experiences of caregivers of persons with depression An interpretative phenomenological analysis

Maria Daniela Farrugia – Ethical Issues Related to Occupational Injustice Against Adults who experience MH difficulties

Pauline Zammit – The effect of physical activity – the perception of university students

Pierre Galea – Community MH and Community Psychiatric Nursing

Prof. Patrick Callaghan – A vision for mental health nursing in the 21st Century

Roberto Galea – A qualitative study of how legal guardians experience DSH among adoloscents

Sarah Ebejer – Fear Reduction- Prolonged Exposure therapy vs psychodynamic therapy in PTSD

Stephen Demicoli – Training Needs of European Psychiatric Mental Health Nurses to comply with Turku Decleration

Join the MAPN

The Maltese Association of Psychiatric Nurses (MAPN) is a registered VO, independently regulated by its own statute and its own elected council. It was founded on the 11th of May 2006 in order to improve and recognize the roles & standards of Psychiatric Nursing in Malta, reinforce nurse leadership in mental health and actively participate in mental health promotion among the Maltese population.

At the outset, the MAPN council chose to focus on 3 concepts: awareness, education, and recognition. Such concepts guide the activities of the same association and are embedded within its statute. The MAPN took several steps to increase the profile of psychiatric nursing locally. This involves a wide array of activities, from voluntary (mental) health promotional activities to involvement in professional and educational events. Over the years the MAPN has also been vigilant regarding the appropriate coverage of mental health issues and events on the local media and their impact on stigma. MAPN also sees this as part of its educational role. The educational role of MAPN also involves organizing conferences, congresses & continuing education opportunities for health and social professionals. In terms of recognition, the MAPN represents the special interest of psychiatric nurses among the stakeholders involved in the mental health field, also teaming up with other similar national / EU / international organizations in achieving this aim.

The MAPN was a founder member of the European Psychiatric Nursing Association (HORATIO). Horatio: European Psychiatric Nurses, based in the Netherlands, represents approx. 350,00 nurses in Europe who work with people suffering mental health challenges, and acts as EU Commission advisor in this field (

Every Nurse or Student Nurse who has a special interest in Mental Health can join the MAPN.

Membership is €13  per year for qualified nurses and €5 for full time students.

You can become a member (or renew) by filling the MAPN Membership Form and send a cheque payable to MAPN to the address: ‘Le Soleil Flat 1, Imriekeb Street, Marsaskala MSK3535′ or by direct transfer to BOV account number 40015570239 (If you choose the bank transfer option please send your membership details via e-mail).

If you are employed within the Maltese Mental Health Services and would like to pay your membership via monthly direct debit please contact us on