SOURCE: Conard House

Conard House

April 28, 2009 13:36 ET

Conard House Hosts Forum on Emerging Health Topic: Self-Management of Chronic Conditions in San Francisco Health Systems

SAN FRANCISCO, CA--(Marketwire - April 28, 2009) - Conard House, a pioneering nonprofit organization helping people self-manage mental illness since 1960, announced today that its upcoming Community Forum on May 7, 2009 ( will bring together leaders in public and community-based health organizations with partners and friends in the private community to discuss the history, status and future of chronic condition self-management within local medical and behavioral health systems.

Kate Lorig, Dr.P.H., Stanford Professor of Medicine, will introduce the session and lead a discussion on the efficacy of self-managing long-term physical health conditions and the prospects for self-management of mental health or substance use recovery. As director of Stanford's Chronic Disease Self-Management Program and author of two books, "Self-Management of Long-Term Health Conditions: a Handbook for People with Chronic Disease" and "Living a Healthy Life with Chronic Conditions," Dr. Lorig is a foremost expert in the field of disease self-management.

"The best model for dealing with any chronic illness is self-management," said Dr. Lorig. "Whether the same principals used to cope with other chronic illnesses, such as diabetes and arthritis, can be applied successfully to mental illness is a controversial subject. By bringing together medical and mental health experts in the San Francisco community, we hope to learn some valuable lessons from each other's experience and explore our common ground and the common obstacles on the horizon in health care reform."

Other panelists include:

--  Jennifer Boyd, PhD, Director, Psychosocial Rehabilitation and Recovery
    Center, San Francisco VA Medical Center and Associate Adjunct Professor in
    Psychiatry, UCSF Medical Center
--  Lisa Golden, MD, Director, Ocean Park Health Center, San Francisco
    Department of Public Health and Associate Clinical Professor of Family
    Medicine, UCSF Medical Center
--  Kelly Pfeifer, MD, Medical Director, San Francisco Health Plan
--  Mason Turner, MD, Chief, Department of Psychiatry, Kaiser San
    Francisco Medical Center and Clinical Instructor in Psychiatry, UCSF
    Medical Center

The forum begins at 6:00 p.m. at the First Unitarian Universalist Center, 1187 Franklin Street San Francisco, California 94109.

"For too many people, living with chronic mental illness is a harsh reality, with little hope," said Richard Heasley, Executive Director of Conard House. "At Conard House, we develop resources that help people self-manage mental illness. Their success, at the end of each day, depends upon a measure of hope that comes from within, and is also reinforced by a community that supports self-management, not just by what its members say but by what they do to help."

About Conard House

Conard House, Inc. is a private, nonprofit organization providing mental health services to residents of San Francisco. Founded upon core principles of self-empowerment, self-determination and the least restrictive, community-based living, Conard House opened its doors in 1960 as the City's first "halfway house" for adults following hospitalization. Today it serves more than 2,100 people in a dozen locations. Support for its programs and services come from various city agencies, service fees from organizations, rents from residents, foundation grants and donor gifts. For more information about Conard House and its programs, please visit

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