Dr. Akmal Makhdum

Dr. Akmal Makhdum Bio

Family & Early Life

Dr. Akmal Makhdum was born in the ancient city of Multan and originally from the historic city of Lahore in Pakistan. He was raised by his family of academics; his mother was a multilingual scholar of literature, languages and religion. His father was Dr. Muhammad Ajmal, who is credited as the founder of psychology in Pakistan, as he established the first psychology department in Government College Lahore and the first psychological counseling center in the country in 1962. Due to his esteemed family and academic excellence, Dr. Makhdum was offered many unique opportunities that allowed him to succeed in many areas of life.

Dr. Makhdum Education
Dr. Akmal Makhdum and family at award ceremony for fellowship of University of Suffolk.

Education & Association Work

In 1982, Dr. Akmal Makhdum graduated from King Edward Medical School in Lahore, Pakistan. He then came to the U.K. and joined the psychiatry training program at the University of Cambridge; he had already achieved specializing in addictions treatment before coming to Britain. Dr. Makhdum obtained his diploma in Psychological Medicine in Ireland and earned his degree for Membership of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, London. In 1996, he was appointed as a consultant in Ipswich.

Dr. Makhdum founded the British Pakistani Psychiatrists Association in 2000 and was the first chair. He was also chair of the All Ethnic Psychiatrists forum “AGP – A Great Partnership” in the U.K. and was founding chair of the All British Pakistani Doctors association. He is Chairman of DDPU – Doctors and Dentists Protection Union.

Career

Following his education, Dr. Akmal Makhdum dedicated his time to combat heroin addiction in Islamabad, opening the first detox and rehabilitation center in the city. After establishing the Islamabad Mental Health Society, and running mental health workshops, seminars and conferences, he conducted mass awareness programs about mental health and addictions in Islamabad.  His father encouraged him to go to USA or UK for higher education in Psychiatry, something he always wanted to do. He was invited and later, sponsored by the late Dr. Phillip Rack, the founder of Transcultural Psychiatry in Britain, to come and train in the UK. Under the guidance and patronage of Dr. Philip Rack, Dr. Makhdum came to Britain and did his postgraduate training.  He then returned to Pakistan to train new psychiatrists and establish new services. He established the psychiatry department at the CDA – Capital Hospital Islamabad, with the first inpatient and proper outpatient services. Following his father’s death, and after numerous offers of top positions in psychiatry, Dr. Makhdum and his family returned to the U.K. He was chief psychiatrist for numerous services in the East of England.

Currently, Dr. Makhdum is a care systems developer and services development consultant. As a private consultant, he works to develop  community based services for people in need, individuals who cannot be managed in the community, for their mental illnesses, autism and other personality based challenges. Additionally, he assists in guiding new services and private initiatives in provision of excellent psychological and social care in the community.

Published work

Dr. Makhdum is a published author. He has two Urdu poetry books published, collection of his poems and sonnets.  Two of his poems have been made into songs in Urdu. He is co-author of “Churchill’s Pocketbook of Psychiatry”, a book for trainee psychiatrists, community nurses, psychologists and multidisciplinary mental health team members, including social workers.  This book is widely available and used by professionals in Britain, Australia and New Zealand.

Dr. Makhdum translated a seminal essay by the famous jurist, author, columnist, broadcaster and scholar, Ijaz Hussain Batalvi, “The Impact of Marital Law on Pakistani Society” and a brief history of the great Moghul Prince, Shah Fateh Ullah Shirazi, by historian and scholar, Professor Khawaja Muhammad Aslam, “A Great Man – Shah Fateh Ullah Shirazi” from Urdu to English. He wrote three other books “Alexander The (Not So) Great,” “Malignant Unhappiness,” and “Machiavelli – A misunderstood Philosopher.”  He also made two android and IoS Apps: Depression self-checker and Bipolar self Checker, for public benefit. All his books are available on Amazon, Kindle and Barnes and Noble. Churchills pocketbook of Psychiatry was published by Harcourt Brace.

Achievements

  • Developed and founded a substance abuse detoxification and rehabilitation centre in Islamabad. It was the first such centre in Islamabad.
  • Studied patterns and developed hypotheses on patterns of personality, including personality patterns of those who use Heroin.
  • Developed a cognitive therapeutic treatment strategy called, The Boredom Technique, in psychological treatment of addictions.
  • 1985 to 1990: Developed mass awareness campaigns and mental health programs in Islamabad in collaboration with The American CentDere, United States Information Service.
  • 1985 to 1990: Established Islamabad Mental Health Society. It was the first such society in the capital to promote issues of mental health in individual and collective decision making.
  • 2006 to 2010: Established and delivered Earthquake Trauma Recovery Initiative (ETRI), a five-year plan to support the victims of 2005 earthquake in Kashmir and Northern Pakistan and tribal areas.
  • 2006: Translated the United National Manual on Tsunami into Urdu and adapted it into culturally appropriate Psychological First Aid Manual for earthquake victims.
  • Founded the Journal of Narrative Based Psychiatry, a professional initiative to highlight the value of individual narrative as opposed to research evidence based psychiatric practice.
  • Fellow University of Essex: department of Human and social sciences, teaching and lecturing on mental health and psychological disorders; developed a diploma program on mental health for general practitioners, allied health professionals and trainee psychiatrists.
  • Fellow University of Suffolk: lectured and trained nurses at the university school of nursing, developed a distant learning certification and training program for medical practitioners in developing countries, trained and certified by tutors in general practice in the UK.