The SASOP was established in 1952 and is currently an association incorporated under Section 21 of the Companies Act, 1973. The SASOP is the only professional body in South Africa that represents the interests and protects the rights of the majority of psychiatrists in South Africa. Its members currently consist of about 520 psychiatrists and psychiatric residents in seven geographical regions across South Africa (Eastern Cape, Free State, Kwazulu-Natal, Limpopo, Northern Gauteng, Southern Gauteng and Western Cape).
The SASOP Board of Directors is assisted by its executive structures consisting of members from two Vocational Groups (SASOP Private Sector Group and the SASOP Public Sector Group), as well as SASOP Divisions, Task Teams, Subgroups and Special Interest Groups (SIGs). Current SIGs include: Biological Psychiatry; Psychotherapy; Forensic Psychiatry; Child and Adolescent Psychiatry; Social Psychiatry; Old Age Psychiatry; Philosophy of Psychiatry; HIV and Neuropsychiatry; Young Psychiatrists; Spirituality and Psychiatry; and Substance Use and Addiction Disorders. More information about SASOP can be obtained from its website: www.sasop.co.za.
The SASOP organizes two alternating biennial congresses, namely: the biennial National SASOP Congress and the biennial Biological Psychiatry Congress. The 18th National SASOP Congress will take place from 3-7 September 2014 in Durban. The official mouth piece journal of the SASOP is the South African Journal of Psychiatry (www.sajp.org.za)
The mission of the SASOP is to promote, maintain and protect the honour and interests of members, the discipline of Psychiatry as a medical speciality and to serve the community.
The objectives of the Society include:
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