Meet the Director


Prof. Bir Singh Chavan

Prof. BS Chavan is the Director-Principal, GMCH, Chandigarh. In addition, he is also the Prof & Head, Department of Psychiatry at Govt. Medical College and Hospital Chandigarh since 1996, heading the Govt Rehabilitation Institute for Intellectual Disability ( GRIID) as its Director and Director, Mental Health Institute. Before joining GMCH, Prof Chavan worked at AIIMS New Delhi as senior faculty between 1988-1996. Prof. BS Chavan did his MD psychiatry from PGIMER, Chandigarh in 1987 and later received WHO Fellowship in community psychiatry from Australia in 1998, Diploma in Hospital Administration (DHM) in 2003 from NIHFW, New Delhi. He is a Fellow of National Academy of Medical Sciences (NAMS), Fellow of International Medical Science Academy (FIMSA).

Prof Chavan has made outstanding contribution in the field of mental health and social work for persons with disability. He is instrumental in starting community outreach program for mental illness and substance abuse including community based indoor detoxification camps.

Prof Chavan has started regular services for the caregivers of mentally ill patients and encouraged the families to got them registered as a self help group (SHG) in the name of Prayatan. He is also instrumental in starting Home Based Treatment Care ( HBT) and Crisis Intervention Services (CIS) for the crisis situations in mental health including 24 hours Suicide Prevention Helpline in Chandigarh.

Prof Chavan is the head of Centre of Excellence (COE) for training manpower in mental health MD Psychiatry, M.Phil in Clinical Psychology, M Phil in Psychiatry Social Work and Diploma in Psychiatry Nursing (DPN). At GRIID, he also started Diploma in Special Education (D Ed-MR), B Ed in special education –MR and M Ed in special education.

In Chandigarh, Prof Chavan has been instrumental in starting comprehensive rehabilitation services in mental health for persons suffering from mental illness, mental retardation, cerebral palsy(CP), autism and multiple disability. For chronic mentally ill patients (SMI), Prof Chavan has set up Disability Assessment, Rehabilitation and Triage ( DART), vocational skill training lab, social skill training lab and cognitive enhancement therapy (CET). For unknown, orphaned and destitute mentally ill patients, Prof Chavan has arranged residential facility at SAMARTH and Aashreya.

For placement for persons with intellectual Disability, Prof Chavan conceived a Project called Umeed and currently 60 persons with intellectual disability have been placed at various outlets of Umeed in Chandigarh. Umeed received Presidential Award in 2003 in the category of Best Placement Agency from then President Dr APJ Abdul Kalam. Under another project called Prayatan, Prof Chavan has created job placement avenues for mentally ill. Both Umeed and Prayatan are self sustaining projects.

For his contribution in the field of mental health and Social work in Disability, Prof Chavan received second Presidential Award in 2013 as the Best Individual working for the persons with disability. Currently, he is involved in setting up Mental Health Institute (MHI) in Chandigarh.

Prof Chavan has outstanding contribution in research in mental health. In addition to writing Textbook on Community Mental Health in India and many book chapters Prof Chavan has published more than 140 research articles, completed more than 15 research projects in mental health and delivered more than 128 guest lectures.

He has set- up antenatal and newborn screening facility at the Genetic Centre and recently, he was invited by Association of Public Health Laboratories (APHL) of United States.

Prof Chavan has national and international standing in the field of mental health. He has served as President of IPS - North Zone and President of IMA Chandigarh. Currently, he is the Secretary General of Indian Association for Social Psychiatry ( IASP), Chairman of Committee on Community Psychiatry of IPS, Organizing Secretary of World Association of Social Psychiatry (WASP) 2016, Member Secretary of Chandigarh Mental Health Authority, Nodal officer of State Nodal Agency Centre (SNAC) under National Trust, MOSJE, Govt of India and Nodal Officer of State Resource Centre (SRC). Prof Chavan is Fellow of many professional bodies in the field of mental health and disability and member of Project Review committee (PRC) of ICMR.

Prof Chavan has more than 22 years administrative experience as HOD and 18 years experience as Joint Director.