Medfest is an international medical film festival taking place at universities around the UK and the world. Founded by Kamran Ahmed over 10 years ago MedFest has an evolving scope but its key aims remain:

  • To explore the relationship between medicine and film
  • To raise awareness of stigmatised conditions and peoples
  • To enjoy film and provoke lively discussion

In a break from the norm, MedFest was held online, via Zoom this year. However, this didn’t prevent insightful and thoughtful discussion from this year’s panel around the theme ‘Labelled’.

When we chose the theme for this year ‘Labelled’ we were initially thinking about diagnostic categories and labels. The events of the year to date, changed our perspective and during the event the discussion moved from those diagnostic labels to cultural, linguistic and societal labels.

The films shown were both immersive and anxiety provoking (Diagnosis- Eva Riley, Troubled Waters- Gemma Norton) and fun and on the surface more light-hearted (Birth Control Your Own Adventure- Sindha Agha). But they all delivered powerful messages about themes ranging from mental illness to motherhood.

This year’s panel included comedian James Acaster, actor and filmmaker Larissa Hope, Psychiatrist and filmmaker Mina Husain and students and activists, Nivethitha Ram and Natasha Chilambo.

Each of the panelists brought different perspectives on the films and these were blended with comments from the audience by the chair for the evening neuropsychiatrist Sortiris Posporelis.

On behalf of the MedFest committee, I would like to thank all those that attended, commented on and shared this year’s event and hope that we are able to see you in person next year. I would also like to thank Maudsley Learning for wholeheartedly supporting the event despite the changes and challenges thrown up by the pandemic.

medfest 2020

MedFest 2020 was sponsored by Maudsley Learning