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Louise Howard awarded prestigious NIHR Research Professorship

In a first for the Institute of Psychiatry, King’s College London and King’s Health Partners, King’s researcher Professor Louise Howard has been awarded a prestigious National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Research Professorship.

NIHR Research Professorships are awarded to health researchers with an outstanding record of clinical and applied health research, and its effective translation for improved health.  The awards fund leaders in the early part of their careers, supporting them to lead research, promote effective translation of research from 'campus to clinic' and strengthen research leadership at the highest academic levels.   The awards are very competitive and given to those on course to becoming the UK's most outstanding research leaders. 

Professor Shitij Kapur, Dean and Head of School, King’s IoP said:  ‘Congratulations to Louise on this remarkable achievement.   Louise is an exceptional scholar and we are delighted NIHR has recognised her potential as a future global leader in her field.’  

Professor Howard’s NIHR Research Professorship will enable her to spend 5 years dedicated to translational research in perinatal health.  Mental health problems in pregnancy and the postpartum period have potential adverse consequences for women, their infants and their families.  Professor Howard’s research aims to contribute to the evidence base on effective and safe ways of treating women’s mental health problems. Her research will include studies on the risks and benefits of medication in pregnancy; violence and health; and an NIHR programme grant on the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of perinatal mental health services.  

Professor Howard said:  ‘This award is really recognition of the work of the team at the Section of Women's Mental Health at the Institute of Psychiatry, and colleagues at the King’s Health Partners Women’s Health Academic Centre. I am delighted and honoured to be taking our work further through this award.’

Louise Howard is Professor of Women’s Mental Health and Head of the Section of Women’s Mental Health in the IoP’s Department of Health Service and Population Research.  Professor Howard leads on clinical research programmes in perinatal mental health, the impact of violence on mental health, and the physical health of people with mental disorders. She is an Honorary Consultant Perinatal Psychiatrist with South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust.   

Professor Howard is Chair of the NICE/NCCMH Guideline Development Group on Antenatal and Postnatal Mental Health, a professional member of the WHO and NICE/SCIE guideline development groups on Preventing and Reducing Domestic Violence, and a member of the International Editorial Board of the British Journal of Psychiatry and Epidemiology and Psychiatric Sciences.

Professor Howard will commence her Professorship in October 2013.

For further information, please contact Seil Collins, Press Officer, Institute of Psychiatry, King’s College London, email: or tel: 00 44 207 848 5377