Dr. Vasundharaa S Nair

Assistant Professor Deputy Director- Centre for Community Mental Health

B.A. (MOP Vaishnav College for Women, University of Madras);
M.S.W. (Christ University, Bengaluru) ;
M.Phil. & Ph.D. in Psychiatric Social Work (National Institute of Mental Health & Neuro Sciences, Bengaluru)

Dr. Vasundharaa S Nair is an Assistant Professor at the Jindal Institute of Behavioral Sciences (JIBS). She completed her doctoral study in Psychiatric Social Work, focused on Social Factors influencing Pathways of Care for Persons with Acute Brain Infections. She has actively worked with Persons with various psychiatric and neurological conditions and their families for the past 6 years thereby providing individual and family interventions. She is skilled in providing care for children and parenting, women and climate change, and healthy ageing. She is a passionate academician, psychotherapist and researcher. 

She was awarded the UGC-JRF fellowship in the year 2015 under which she did her MPhil in Psychiatric Social Work and PhD in Psychiatric Social Work. She has been an Honorary Fellow of the University of Liverpool and was the Senior Social Scientist in the Brain Infections Global Project of the University. She won the TedX Bangalore Idea Challenge of 2021. She won the prestigious NIHR (National Institute of Health Research) GHR PTTA Global Health Fellow Award in the year 2021. Previously she has also been an Erasmus Exchange student at HAN University where she had her training on Sustainable Development. She has also been part of the prestigious Asia Pacific Youth Exchange Award to Vietnam in 2021 and was on the hosting team in India for 2022. 

Research Experience

Dr. Nair’s research is centred on social determinants of health, sustainable development goals, care for Persons with chronic illnesses and their families and also on mental health education and care. She has published several peer-reviewed journal articles and presented at national and international conferences. She won the Best Paper Award at the World Encephalitis Conference for her doctoral research paper in 2021. She is currently working on the areas of rehabilitation, help-seeking in suicide, family therapy, parenting, POCSO protocols, climate change and relation with mental health and understanding the interplay of psychological experiences with functional limitations from a pain and palliative approach. She has also established the LGBTIQIA+ module for the Movers Programme of the UNDP. She is interested in continuing work in qualitative research, mixed methods research, social determinants of health, rehabilitation in neuropsychiatric conditions, therapeutical care through online and teleservices and behavioural interventions and public health. She is also a reviewer of the Journal of Psychosexual Health and the Journal of Family Medicine and Primary Care. 

Teaching Experience

During her doctoral work, she was involved in clinical teachings in multi-disciplinary team settings involving professionals from the field of psychiatry, psychiatric social work, clinical psychology, psychiatric nursing, and neurology. While working as a Lecturer at St John’s Medical College and Hospital, she taught family assessment, and psychotherapy, formulating a biopsychosocial formulation and establishing POCSO protocols for working for undergraduate and postgraduate students. She was also part of the Post Graduate Committee and Hospital Infection Support System Committee. At JGU, she offers cross electives on “Building Resilience- Bouncing Back from Setbacks”, other than the core papers.

Research Interests

Social Determinants of Health, Psychosocial Care and Interventions in Acute and Chronic Neuropsychiatric conditions, Behavioural interventions and public health, Climate change and mental health, Barriers and Facilitators in Pathways to care, End of life care, Family therapy and Parenting, Aging and Health, Rehabilitation in Neuropsychiatric conditions, Crisis Interventions in Biological Disasters and Care in End of life care. In these areas, she predominantly enjoys using qualitative research, mixed methods and ethnographic research methods. 

Publications

  1. Ugargol, A. P., & Nair, V. S. (2024). Intersectionality and cumulative disadvantage in access to healthcare for older adults in India. In Handbook of Aging, Health and Public Policy (pp. 1–26). Springer Nature Singapore.
  2. Nair, V. S., Thomas, P. T., & Netravathi, M. (2022). Psychosocial factors in brain infections research in the last decade: A scoping review. Indian Journal of Community Medicine: Official Publication of Indian Association of Preventive & Social Medicine, 47(4), 495–500. https://doi.org/10.4103/ijcm.ijcm_321_22
  3. Banerjee, D., & Nair, V. S. (2020). Handling the COVID-19 pandemic: Proposing a community based toolkit for psycho-social management and preparedness. Asian Journal of Psychiatry51(102152), 102152. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ajp.2020.102152
  4. Balasubramanian, B., Nair, V. S., George, N., Reddy, A., Thomas, P. T., & Kulkarni, G. B. (2021). A bio-psychosocial framework for chronic daily headaches: A mixed methods study. Journal of Patient Experience, 8, 23743735211049670. https://doi.org/10.1177/23743735211049672
  5. Nair, V. S., Thomas, P. T., Sekar, K., & Netravathi, M. (2023). Barriers and facilitators to seeking care for persons with acute brain infections: a cross sectional study. International Journal of Community Medicine and Public Health, 10(5), 1905–1910. https://doi.org/10.18203/2394-6040.ijcmph20231294
  6. Rajagopalan, J., Arshad, F., Hoskeri, R. M., Nair, V. S., Hurzuk, S., Annam, H., Varghese, F., Br, R., Dhiren, S. R., Ganeshbhai, P. V., Kammammettu, C., Komaravolu, S., Thomas, P. T., Comas-Herrera, A., & Alladi, S. (2022). Experiences of people with dementia and their caregivers during the COVID-19 pandemic in India: A mixed-methods study. Dementia (London, England), 21(1), 214–235. https://doi.org/10.1177/14713012211035371
  7. Nair, V. S., Moorkath, F., & Vranda, M. N. (2020). Effect of socio-cultural factors in therapeutic intervention. Open Journal of Psychiatry & Allied Sciences, 11(1), 26. https://doi.org/10.5958/2394-2061.2020.00006.3
  8. Nair, V. S., & Banerjee, D. (2020). The heterogeneity of grief in India during coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and the national lockdown. Asian Journal of Psychiatry, 54(102249), 102249. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ajp.2020.102249
  9. Rajagopalan, J., Arshad, F., Thomas, P. T., Varghese, F., Hurzuk, S., Hoskeri, R. M., Ramappa, R. B., Nair, V. S., Paplikar, A., Mekala, S., Manae, T. S., Ramanna, D. B. P., Rakesh, G., Ganeshbhai, P. V., Dhiren, S. R., Komaravolu, S., Kammammettu, C., Rao, G. N., & Alladi, S. (2022). Cognition, behavior, and caregiver stress in dementia during the COVID-19 pandemic: An Indian perspective. Dementia and Geriatric Cognitive Disorders51(1), 90–100. https://doi.org/10.1159/000519616
  10. Banerjee D, Nair VS. “The Untold Side of COVID-19”: Struggle and Perspectives of the Sexual Minorities. Journal of Psychosexual Health. 2020;2(2):113-120. https://doi.org/10.1177/2631831820939017
  11. Nair, V. S., & Banerjee, D. (2021). Vulnerabilities due to COVID-19 pandemic among the military personnel: A psychosocial perspective. Indian Journal of Psychiatric Social Work , 2(11), 1–6. https://doi.org/10.29120/ijpsw.2020.v11.i2.236
  12. Nair, V. S., Warrier, M., Arun, S. & Thomas, P.T. (2020). Telephonic follow ups during COVID 19 pandemic in Chronic Illness: Lessons learnt. IFSW. https://www.ifsw.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/06/Covid19_NIMHANS.pdf