Sudanese Association of Psychiatrists

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History of Psychiatry in the Sudan


Whenever  the history of Psychiatry in the Sudan is discussed, it would be appropriate to mention the wisdom that says; studying the past cast a wider and deeper vision into the future.

      The history of Psychiatry in the Sudan

started with the late Professor Tigani El Mahi,

who completed his post-graduate studies in London

in 1949 to be the first qualified psychiatrist in the Sudan and Africa. He was known for his original thinking as shown in his writings, which reflected deep knowledge, experience and culture. Tigani El Mahi was addressed as “the father of Psychiatry in Africa”. He founded the first Psychiatry clinic in Al Amlak district in Bahri city and in 1950 he co-founded Kober Mental Asylum.

Taha Bassher, another pioneer in psychiatry, founded many mental health institutes including Bahri psychiatry clinic in 1959, Khartoum Psychiatry clinic in 1962 and Tigani El Mahi Teaching Hospital in1971. He is rightfully the genuine father of the so called “open-door psychiatry treatment policy”, as he adopted accepting patients and their families for inpatients treatment, and rented houses near the clinic for that purpose . Taha Bassher also founded psychiatric units in all provinces of the Sudan. He and his colleagues started from the very beginning to bridge the gab between traditional healing and psychiatry.

In 1968 Professor Tigani El Mahi, was assigned as the first professor in psychiatry and the first president of Psychiatry Department, in Khartoum University faculty of Medicine.