The Mental Health Academic Unit (MHAU) in South West Sydney includes well established research groups covering perinatal, infant, child, and adolescent mental health including neurodevelopmental disorders (e.g. Autism, Tourette Syndrome), attachment, separation anxiety, early intervention and models of care; physical health in mental health, screening and intervention models for cardio-metabolic effects of second generation antipsychotics; as well as intimate partner violence in refugees and those from conflict affected areas. All units also share an interest in promoting access to mental health services, knowledge translation, and evidence-based care.
The MHAU is a collaboration of clinicians and researchers from the South Western Sydney Local Health District (SWSLHD) working alongside the University of New South Wales (UNSW). The MHAU seeks to understand the biological and environmental aetiology, epidemiology, clinical features and management of psychiatric and psychological disorders, and their interface with mental health services. The unit also focuses on capacity building for health professionals interested in mental health, particularly in supporting research projects and ensuring research is embedded into everyday practice in the LHD.
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Specific research interests within MHAU include:
- Autism, Tourette, OCD and Neurodevelopmental Disorders – Prof Eapen, UNSW and SWSLHD
- Physical health in mental health, screening for cardio-metabolic side effects of antipsychotics – Prof Ward, UNSW and SWSLHD
- Intimate partner violence among women from refugee and conflict affected areas – Associate Professor Rees, UNSW
- Genetic psychiatry, suicide prevention, neurodevelopmental disorders – Dr Lin, UNSW and SWSLHD
- Perinatal Depression – A/Prof Stephen Matthey
- Perinatal early intervention including parenting, disruptive behaviour disorders – Dr Jane Kohlhoff
- Child psychology, mental health systems – Dr Mendoza Diaz, SWSLHD and UNSW
- Bayesian statistics, research methods – Dr Klein, SWSLHD and UNSW
- Frequentist statistics, research methods – Dr Mohsin, SWSLHD and UNSW
- Integration of mental health services into primary care – Dr. Hasan, SWSLHD and UNSW
To learn more about the MHAU, click here.