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Mental Health and Addiction Research Group

About us

At the Mental Health and Addiction Research Group (MHARG), our research is fundamental to shaping mental health and addiction policies and services, particularly within the NHS.

Mental health permeates all areas of medicine, however it has historically suffered from under recognition and inadequate attention in healthcare systems. At MHARG, we believe mental health should have the same recognition as physical health. Our focus is on prevention, early intervention, and understanding mental health issues and addictions across all stages of life.

We adopt a multidisciplinary approach, integrating population, clinical, behavioural, economic, and environmental perspectives. We also collaborate with individuals experiencing addictions or mental health challenges, ensuring our research directly addresses real needs and concerns.

*McManus, S., Meltzer, H., Brugha, T. S., Bebbington, P. E., & Jenkins, R. (2009). Adult psychiatric morbidity in England, 2007: results of a household survey. The NHS Health and Social Care Information Centre

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Informing NHS policy and practice

We have a robust track record in conducting evidence syntheses and large-scale pragmatic randomised controlled trials which have informed NHS policies and practices.

Our partnership with the York Trials Unit exemplifies our commitment to rigorous research methodologies.

Notably, we hold a pivotal role in fostering collaborative research across Yorkshire and Humberside, encompassing a population of 6.2 million, through our engagement with the NIHR Applied Research Collaboration (ARC). This collaborative framework empowers us to undertake ambitious research initiatives at scale with NHS partners.

If you require support with policy, please contact our Research Group Administrators: or


Global reach

MHARG has forged significant partnerships in South Asia, primarily through our involvement in the NIHR IMPACT Global Health Research initiative.

The University of York and the Aga Khan University (AKU) in Karachi jointly led the establishment of the Research Centre, to improve mental and physical health in Afghanistan and Pakistan.

As an NIHR Global Health Research Centre, this five-year £7.6m initiative launched in November 2022 provides new opportunities to develop, test and embed evidence-based treatments that address non-communicable diseases including depression and anxiety, heart conditions and diabetes.

Non-communicable diseases are rapidly increasing and are now responsible for 64% of deaths and disabilities globally. In Pakistan and Afghanistan, they account for almost a million deaths every year.


Collaborate, visit or study with us

Here in MHARG, we believe that nurturing the future of healthcare through hands-on research experiences and building capacity in the mental health community is fundamental to driving change.

We welcome research collaborations and visits, as well as postgraduate research study with us. We also welcome applications to our MSc in Mental Health Research, offered by the University of York.

We invite undergraduate Medicine students to participate in a range of enriching opportunities to explore mental health, build essential skills, and contribute to groundbreaking research in the field. We offer opportunities through the Medical School's MB BS Medicine programme, including the Scholarship and Special Interest Programme, the Wellcome Trust-funded INSPIRE initiative, and elective opportunities.

If you are interested in any of these opportunities, please contact us.


Discover more about our research

MHARG is based in the Department of Health Sciences at the University of York. Please visit the Mental Health and Addiction Research Group webpages on the University of York website for more details about the group’s work and impact, including their ongoing and completed research projects, research staff and expertise, and their latest news.

Contact us

Kerry Cipriano - Research Group Administrator

01904 321719

Jo Orchard - Research Group Administrator

01904 321356