The M.Phil. program in clinical psychology started in 1998 AD at Institute of Medicine, Tribhuvan University Teaching Hospital (TUTH). The installation of this academic program was greatly supported by United Mission to Nepal (UMN) with the purpose of capacity building and human resource development in the mental health sector. UMN is one of the first INGOs to run community mental health projects in Nepal around 1980s.
The M.Phil. Clinical psychology is a two years course with eligibility for MA students in general psychology with clinical psychology as specialization course from Tribhuvan University or any other recognized university. The applicants have to appear on entrance exams and interview for admission. Only two students are admitted in a year. The student goes through two years full time residential training in TUTH with a designated guide for clinical supervision. The cost of the course is around Rs. 1.5 lakhs with 10% increment every year. One of the problems with this program is that the students are not provided any sort of financial incentives for the whole period during the course. Student has to learn and work at the same time voluntarily. However, there are good chances of employment after that. Upon completion of course, the student will be able to provide services to deal with mental health and psychological problems. S/he will be able to work in a team with other mental health professionals. It is important to note that s/he is not authorized to prescribe medications for clients. S/he helps the clients with psychotherapy,
psycho-education and counseling.
The first batch of students from M.Phil program was Pashupati Mahat and Jamuna Sangraula. Dr. Mahat is now working as a clinical psychologist in CMC Nepal. The second batch included Mita Rana and Subash Sharma. Ms. Rana is the co-ordinator of the M.Phil. program in TUTH and she is currently doing her PhD on “A Comparative study of cognitive therapy and pharmacotherapy in depressive disorder in hospital setting in Nepal.”
The MPhil program offers a good opportunity for students who are interested to specialize in clinical psychology with hospital based residential training. The psychology students in Tribhuvan University are getting little exposure and very less clinical supervision required to work as a professional in this area. Students are theoretically trained but the practical experiences are lacking. They have the required knowledge but they are missing opportunity to apply it and increase their competencies. With none of the psychology students able to make it to Mental Hospital, the one and only mental health institution for the whole population of the country, this program kindles the hope that they will be able to make it there one day. The psychology students deserve a chance to work and contribute at Mental hospital and other hospitals in Nepal. They can help to fulfill the demand for adequate human resource required to serve the people. At the same time, this could also help to fill the gap between the need and delivery of the mental health services in the nation.
This post has been prepared from the primary data obtained during the interview that I did with Ms. Mita Rana on 22 February 2011 at TUTH. I would also like to thank Mr. Suraj Shakya (current MPhil Student) for sharing his insights and helping me contact Ms. Rana.
For more information, contact Ms. Rana (picture below) in her email address: firstname.lastname@example.org or mobile: 9721459511
The entrance exam forms are now open and being distributed at TUTH. The entrance exam will be held on May 22 2011.
Updated: 25 Feb2016 – Notice for new admission in 2016-2017