Dr Simon Rosenbaum Quote

Meet the speaker: Dr Simon Rosenbaum

In the lead up to Lifestyle Medicine 2018, we will be giving you the chance to get to know our speakers, their passion and their work in our ‘Meet the Speakers’ series.

Senior Research Fellow at Black Dog and UNSW School of Psychiatry, Simon Rosenbaum is presenting “Working out Mental Illness” at Lifestyle Medicine 2018 to share his research using exercise as effective medicine for people suffering mental health issues.

We asked Simon his thoughts on Lifestyle Medicine, and his passion for it, and here’s what he said:

“Whilst it might sound a bit clichéd, my vision of an effective, functional health system is one that focuses on health as opposed to illness, and on prevention instead of treatment.

I think that exercise and health is a basic right, as opposed to a privilege of the well-off. Those most likely to benefit from exercise are often the most vulnerable members of our society, including people living with serious mental illness. Being able to help these groups have access to safe, effective exercise programs has enormous potential in terms of benefits to both the individual, and the broader health system.

If a genie granted me a wish (applicable only to health care), I would first ask for more research funding! Then, I think my wish would be around equality of access to services. Where you live and what you do for work shouldn’t determine what level of care you have access to. Especially when it comes to universal interventions such as diet and exercise. People living with mental illness should have access to exercise and diet interventions as a standard part of routine care, regardless of diagnosis or postcode.

What drives and motivates me is partly equality, and partly seeing first-hand the benefits that simple lifestyle change can have on people’s general mental health, regardless of whether someone is experiencing a severe mental illness or not.

If I have uninterrupted free time, I’d spend it outdoors, generally kayaking, bike riding or climbing.”

We are fortunate to have Dr Rosenbaum joining us at Lifestyle Medicine 2018.

More from Dr Simon Rosenbaum

You can watch a 3-minute video on Simon’s work here or some of Simon’s articles published in The Conversation here.