People who have experienced or are experiencing mental illness bring valuable knowledge and a unique perspective. This knowledge, which is also gained by family members, is of great importance for research. That is why experts by experience, i.e. patients and their families, are actively involved in the committees and research projects. The public is also involved, for example, to identify topics for future research. A dedicated infrastructure, the Center for Patient and Public Involvement (PPI), is being established to support these activities.

Experts as drivers of innovation

Involving patients and their families in research on mental health and illness makes it possible to tailor research projects to their needs and improve the quality of care. Through their unique perspective and experience, they can better understand the challenges and concerns of people with mental health problems. This approach helps to increase the chances of successful therapies and give those affected the feeling of being understood and supported. In addition, research can benefit significantly from the involvement of experts by experience if they are involved in the design and planning of studies from the outset. Establishing a high standard for participation across the life span and setting an example is therefore one of the main goals of the DZPG.