Academics reaching out to Greater Victoria’s bipolar community

Researchers in town to recruit bipolar individuals for new study

Psychiatrist Dr. Erin Michalak wants to hear from more people suffering from bipolar disorder as part of her research team's work into the condition.

Erin Michalak is all too familiar with the confines of the ivory tower.

As a psychiatrist and head of a bipolar disorder research team at the University of B.C., Michalak knew there had to be a way of engaging participants in a way that not only collected better information, but involved them in the research itself.

She and her colleagues with the Collaborative Research Team (CREST-BD), who study psychosocial issues in bipolar disorder, call it community-engaged research.

“It’s about the distribution of power,” Michalak said.

“In traditional medical research, it’s quite siloed in the academic community. What we’re seeing now is moving research out from that.”

There are about 30 core researchers in the program, including some in Victoria, but thousands of people have participated since its inception in 2007, Michalak said.

Co-ordinators hope to find more people who deal with bipolar disorder for an online quality-of-life study in the coming months.

Michalak is visiting Victoria on March 18 and 19 to discuss bipolar disorder and address the stigma that exists around mental health issues.

On March 18, she and University of Victoria colleague Joanna Cheek will speak briefly at the Royal Jubilee Hospital’s Eric Martin Pavilion Theatre following the Movie Monday screening of A Summer in the Cage at 6:30 p.m. The theatre is at 2328 Trent St. (enter off Fort Street).

Tuesday’s public event happens in the Woodward Room of the hospital’s Begbie Hall, 2101 Richmond Rd. at 7:30 p.m.

“We tend to see the bad news stories, when things go wrong. The stuff we don’t focus on so much is when people hold down good jobs and get on with their lives,” Michalak said. “One of our missions is to make sure we’re sharing the fact that people can live well.”

To learn about CREST-BD and how to become involved, visit crestbd.ca. For more on Movie Monday, visit moviemonday.ca.

dpalmer@vicnews.com

Just Posted

Saanich Peninsula Alert launches today

Existing subscribers already moved to new system

Local cadets gain acceptance to RMC

Military careers one step closer

New Star Cinema project approved

Cameo development gets unanimous council thumbs up

Stelly’s sidewalk gets green light

Federal funding brings project to fruition

Witnesses sought for alleged drunk driver crash in Sidney

Crash happened June 16 on East Saanich Rd. and Canora Dr.

VIDEO: Canadian toddler caught practising hockey skills in crib

Eli Graveline is getting praise from far and wide as the internet freaks out of cute throwback video

5 fun things to do this weekend in Greater Victoria

Victoria Ska and Reggae Fest, Ride Don’t Hide, Cordova Bay Day and more

Amalgamation fails in North Cowichan and Duncan

North Cowichan says yes, but Duncan says no

B.C. teacher ends Jeopardy! winning streak, taking home US$69,000

Ali Hasan, from New Westminster, has been gaining fans as a “one-man invasion,” says Alex Trebek

Jett Woo highlights 5 Canucks choices on Day 2 of NHL entry draft

WHL star out of Moose Jaw tabbed in Round 2

In a matter of hours, women in Saudi Arabia will be allowed to drive

Change was announced as a royal decree in 2017 by Crown Prince Mohammen bin Salman

Feds announce measures to protect endangered whale species

Canada’s Whale Initiative is part of the federal government’s $1.5 billion Ocean Protection Plan

COC session vote approves Calgary as potential host for 2026 Olympics

Scott Hutcheson, chair of Calgary’s Olympic bid corporation — called vote a positive step forward

Mounties seize 1,500 pot plants in ‘extensive Shawnigan raid

Mounties searched a property in the 4800-block of Goldstream Heights Drive on May 30

Most Read