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Understanding suicide risk in bipolar disorder

Project Description

Suicide is a major problem in people with bipolar disorder. Around one third of people with bipolar disorder will attempt suicide. This rate is 30 times higher than the general population and greater than other psychiatric groups. Even in the absence of a suicide attempt, suicidal thinking predicts worse long-term mental health outcomes. Although emerging research has implicated psychological factors (e.g. defeat, entrapment, hopelessness) in the development of suicidality, there are very few empirical studies in people with bipolar disorder. We need to better understand the reasons for these high rates of suicidality in order to develop better interventions and treatments for this high risk group.

This PhD will comprise of research attempting to understand suicide risk in people with a diagnosis of bipolar disorder. The doctoral student will use interesting and novel research methods (e.g. the experience sampling method) to explore the short-term causes of suicidality. They will also use qualitative interviews to understand the lived experiences of people with bipolar disorder. There will be a strong emphasis on collaborative working with service users throughout.

The supervisors are HCPC registered clinical psychologists and able to provide supervision and support around working with risk and bipolar disorder. They have experience of supervising and supporting doctoral students, enabling them to meet their personal and career goals. Bipolar research is a current priority for the National Institute of Health Research. The work will support grant applications around preventing suicide in bipolar disorder

Funding Notes

Applications should be made directly to Dr Jasper Palmier-Claus and should include:

CV (max 2 A4 sides), including details of two academic references
A cover letter outlining your qualifications and interest in the studentship (max 2 A4 sides)

How good is research at Lancaster University in Allied Health Professions, Dentistry, Nursing and Pharmacy?

FTE Category A staff submitted: 64.40

Research output data provided by the Research Excellence Framework (REF)

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