NAMI to Increase Support Groups Nationwide Through AstraZeneca Partnership

Jan 30 2007

Arlington, VA — The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) will significantly expand its support group program for people with mental illnesses to all 50 states and Puerto Rico by 2009, thanks to an exclusive multi-year partnership with AstraZeneca, LP.

NAMI C.A.R.E. (Consumers Advocating Recovery through Empowerment) is a recovery model in which individuals who live with serious mental illnesses share experiences in safe, confidential environments and learn coping skills. The weekly 90-miinute meetings also help to overcome the isolation often experienced by mental health consumers.

"We look forward to enhancing an already successful partnership with AstraZeneca through the expansion of NAMI-C.A.R.E," said Suzanne Vogel-Scibilia, M.D., president of the NAMI national board. The program is especially important because building a strong support system provides the foundation for recovery. Many people with mental illness try to recover alone, but a powerful healing process occurs when people find that they have peers who share their experiences."

"Because patient health is at the foundation of everything we do, we are pleased to be part of a program that will have a dramatic impact on the health of people with mental illness," said Tony Zook, president and chief executive officer of AstraZeneca LP. "Our responsibility goes well beyond just making medicines. We are committed to help making available the supportive services that patients need also."

NAMI-C.A.R.E. began with a NAMI affiliate in suburban Chicago, Illinois and has spread to various cities. The expansion aims to have a support group in every major city nationwide, in English and Spanish, with standard training and materials.

NAMI is the nation's largest grassroots mental health organization dedicated to improving the lives of persons living with serious mental illnesses like depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia and anxiety disorders.

AstraZeneca is a one of the world's leading international health care businesses, engaged in the research, development, manufacture and marketing of prescription pharmaceuticals and the supply of healthcare services.