Youth Mental Health Research

‘Pilot randomised controlled trial of a telephone delivered intervention for hazardous alcohol use among young people living with severe mental ill-health’

Newcastle University, NSW
Awarded 2018

“Misuse of alcohol affects the severity and outcomes of mental illness, as well as physical health and well-being. This project will be a world first study of a telephone delivered intervention for young people with severe mental illness and are also drinking alcohol at harmful levels.”

Researcher Profile

Amanda Baker is a clinical psychologist and National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Senior Research Fellow employed as a Professor in the School of Medicine and Public Health at the University of Newcastle. Her research has been supported by NHMRC fellowships continuously since 2003.

Amanda has over 250 publications. She focusses her research on the triad of mental, physical health and substance use disorders. Projects typically involve multi-site randomised controlled trials of psychological interventions among people with severe mental disorders or severe physical illness (e.g., cancer, cardiovascular disease) and tobacco, alcohol and other substance use problems.

Project Summary

Young Australians with serious mental illness (SMI), including those with schizophrenia, bipolar and depression with psychotic features, report drinking alcohol at rates that are hazardous. The combination of severe mental illness and harmful drinking is related to increased mental ill-health and worse treatment outcomes. Our team has a track record of successful collaboration and a range of expertise across the mental health and drug and alcohol fields, working with young people and delivering accessible and innovative evidence based treatments.

Our project will use a telephone delivered intervention that aims to address harmful alcohol use, other lifestyle factors (e.g. substance use) and mental health symptoms in young people who are receiving treatment from Australian mental health services. We aim to explore if this intervention is acceptable to young Australians with severe mental illness who are also drinking harmful levels of alcohol.

Co-Investigators: Peter Kelly, Leanne Hides & Kypros Kypri