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Farha Abbasi, M.D.

Farha Abbasi

Candidate for 2024

A Message from the Candidate

Candidate Platform

Read candidates' platforms in the APA Election Guide to the Candidates (.pdf), including:

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  • What is your most important achievement?
  • Where does the profession of psychiatry need to be in five years?
  • Something about yourself that most people don't know


Dr. Farha Abbasi is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at Michigan State University and core faculty member of the Muslim Studies Program. She is from Pakistan and settled in the United States in the year 2000 with her three daughters. In January of 2009, Dr. Abbasi received the American Psychiatric Association SAMSHA Minority Fellowship to create awareness about cultural competency, to redefine it as not just tolerance but acceptance.

Her areas of interest are cultural psychiatry and teaching medical students culturally appropriate care to Muslim patients. She works directly with Muslim American community to encourage integration rather than isolation from mainstream society.

She is the founding director of the Annual Muslim Mental Health Conference. In 2018 the tenth conference was held at the United State Institute of Peace in Washington, D.C. In addition, she launched a Global Muslim Mental Health Conference in Malaysia and Jordan. She is also the managing editor of the Journal of Muslim Mental Health and Director of the Muslim Mental Health Consortium, Michigan State University.

Dr. Abbasi has received numerous awards for her service to the community and promoting mental health. Dr. Abbasi was received the Women on the Frontlines Award presented by Health & Human Service Secretary Xavier Becerra in Washington, D.C., was an Honoree of the National Alliance of Mentally Ill, and American Psychiatric Association Foundation Award for Promoting Minority Mental Health.

She has served on many boards and committees including Council on Minority Mental Health and Health Disparities, American Psychiatric Association. She currently chairs the Mental Health Task Force for the Mayor of Lansing, Michigan.

She works relentlessly and tirelessly towards one goal: Learning to coexist and go beyond our differences to reach the common point of peace and prosperity.

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  • Michigan State University, Master of Public Health (2016-Present)
  • Michigan State University Psychiatry Residency Program (2006-2010)
  • M.B.B.S. (Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery), Liaquat Medical College, Hyderabad, Pakistan (1983-1989)

Awards and Honors

  • President Elect, Pakistani American Psychiatric Association (2024-2025)
  • Executive Committee Member of the World Psychiatric Association (WPA) Section on Religion, Spirituality and Psychiatry for (2023-2026)
  • General Secretary, Pakistani American Psychiatric Association (2023-2024)
  • Diverse Voices Program Award, Michigan State University Provost (2023)
  • Women on the Frontlines: Celebrating Women Faith Leaders, presented by Health & Human Service Secretary Xavier Becerra in Washington, D.C. (2023)
  • Spartan Women Trailblazers, Michigan State University (2021)
  • Inspiration Award winner, Community Engagement category, Michigan State University Center for Gender in Global Context (2021)
  • Mayor's Town Hero Award (Lansing, MI) (2020)
  • Honoree, National Alliance of Mentally Ill (2018)
  • American Psychiatric Foundation Award, Promoting Minority Mental Health (2017)
  • Globie Award Winner, MSU Office for International Students and Scholars (2017)
  • Community Service Award by All Pakistanis Physician of North America (2015)
  • Community Service Award by Pakistan Women Association of Michigan (2015)
  • 50th Anniversary Sister City Commission: Distinguished citizen diplomat, panelist on Global Diplomatic Round Table, topics included issues and challenges facing our world (2014)
  • Town Hero Award: Excellence in Diversity and Years of Improving Mental Health (2013)
  • Greater Awareness through Education Award (2013)
  • EIDA—Excellence in Diversity Award (2013)
  • Presentation of Plaque by Lansing City Council, Recognition by Mayor of Lansing (2011)
  • American Psychiatric Association Fellowship, SAMSHA Fellow (2008)
  • American Psychiatric Association Award, MPS, Ritz-Carlton, Dearborn, MI (2008)

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