Anitra Karthic

  • 2020 Summer Intern

Anitra Karthic is a rising senior at Case Western Reserve University studying Neuroscience and Sociology with minors in Chemistry and Spanish. She became interested in global mental health as a result of experiences in India where she assisted the rehabilitation of trafficked victims diagnosed with PTSD and depression. Observing how stigma and miseducation could impact access to treatment, she helped staff at the organization create materials about mental health to share with the local community. She became curious about how to implement accessible interventions for different cultures and communities around the world.

Anitra worked with Dr. Annika Sweetland and Dr. Jennifer Mootz to develop interactive educational material to train non-specialists how to provide interpersonal counseling (IPC) and screening, brief intervention, and referral to treatment (SBIRT) in low-resource settings in Brazil and Mozambique. She learned about these evidence-based interventions, transcribed and coded interviews, and developed scenario-based assessments. She also conducted a literature search on the effectiveness of anti-stigma training methods to propose adding a sub-module about stigma to the course and developed a plan for it. Overall, she learned the importance of considering social, economic, environmental and cultural factors, along with community stakeholders, to successfully implement interventions to increase mental health literacy and access to care. In addition to the project, she connected with like-minded individuals and learned about the various ways we can make an impact in global mental health, whether it’s through policy work, patient care, research, leadership or advocacy within our communities. This was Anitra’s first exposure to global health research and she enjoyed every second of the program. She hopes to become a physician-advocate who treats patients holistically through integrating physical, mental and social wellbeing.

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