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Fellows award for Dr Katherine Young for work on the mental health of young people during and after the pandemic

A grant from MQ Mental Health Research will fund vital new studies into depression and anxiety in young people during and after the COVID-19 pandemic by Dr Katherine Young of the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience at King’s College London.

Young woman wearing a face mask looking back at the camera

Dr Young has also given an interview with MQ

Looking at the pandemic as a stressor Dr Young will investigate how symptoms of anxiety and depression in young people have changed in the 12 months since the beginning of the Pandemic and if these changes can be used to make predictions about who will go on to experience long term issues.

This Fellows award is one of three new awards being announced by the charity MQ who exclusively fund scientific research into mental health conditions. By supporting early career scientists such as Dr Young, MQ is working to increase the number, and diversity, of professionals researching mental health conditions such as Depression, PTSD and anxiety

’m very pleased to have received this award to continue and expand my work examining the mental health of young people across the UK in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. MQ’s support in this work is vital to ensure that we can quickly and effectively understand the stressors that young people are facing and how this influences mental health. This will help us transform findings into real-world impact to better support vulnerable young people during this crisis and beyond.– Dr Katherine Young, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience (IoPPN), King’s College London

Developing interventions for young people

Dr Katherine Young’s research will analyse data gathered from over 3,500 young people and make this dataset available to other researchers for future and further study. It is hoped that this research will help develop psychological interventions for stress related mental health conditions in young people, even beyond the specifics of the pandemic to other more common stressors such as economic hardship, chronic health problems or social pressures.

For more information, visit: Youth depression & anxiety during and after the COVID-19 pandemic

This is fantastic news and very well deserved. We know that young people are being massively affected during this pandemic and it’s vitally important that we understand exactly how their mental health is changing so we can effectively provide support now and in the future.– Professor Ian Everall, Executive Dean, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience, King's College London

MQ funding

This investment is one of three new Fellows awards being announced by MQ totalling over £800,000. The other two new Fellows are Dr Mark Taylor from the Karolinska Institutet in Sweden and Dr Ruchika Gajwani from the University of Glasgow who will be researching the links between mental health and autism and borderline personality disorder respectively.

Funding for new fellows is awarded after a rigorous application process, during which the methodology, inter-disciplinary approach and impact are all closely assessed. The three award winners impressed MQ’s research committee with their elegant research proposals and high-quality applications.

“The areas of study for the 2021 MQ Fellows are wide ranging but with a core focus on the mental health of children and young people. This underscores the need for further research into mental health conditions and prevention, as well as the impact on people’s mental health during and after the COVID-19 pandemic. As a mental health research funder, we want to invest in the brightest new talent and see research put to work for those suffering most.” Says MQ CEO Lea Milligan.

“One in four people will suffer from a mental illness during their lifetime, however investment in research lags way behind other health conditions with a similar impact. At MQ, we are committed to investing in vital research of different health conditions so that we can help talented scientists like Dr Young find the next breakthrough. Thank you to all of the MQ donors who have made this new research investment possible. By bringing the public and scientists closer together, we can see lives transformed.”

Contact

To find out more or to arrange interviews, please contact the Communications team at NIHR Maudsley BRC:

  • Alex Booth, Communications and Engagement Manager, NIHR Maudsley Biomedical Research Centre, Tel 020 7848 0495 alex.booth@kcl.ac.uk
  • Serena Rianjongdee, Communications and Engagement Officer, NIHR Maudsley Biomedical Research Centre, Tel 020 7848 2137 serena.rianjongdee@kcl.ac.uk

This article was originally published on the NIHR Maudsley BRC website on 18 January 2021.

In this story

Katherine Young

Katherine Young

Lecturer