Research Clinical Psychologist
HCPC registered research clinical psychologist working within the Oxford Cognitive Approaches to Psychosis (O-CAP) group.
I am committed to improving the provision of treatment for people with distressing delusions and hallucinations. The O-CAP research group approaches this by identifying and testing the mechanisms underpinning psychological distress. This understanding is then used to develop more effective and accessible treatments.
The majority of my work in the team has been as the primary therapist on a randomised controlled trial of a novel translational psychological treatment for persecutory delusions; the Feeling Safe study. I am also working as a therapist on the gameChange trial which employs immersive virtual reality to provide psychological therapy. This NIHR invention4innovation funded project involves collaborations with the Royal College of Arts, the McPin Foundation, NIHR MindTech, OxfordVR, and multiple NHS trusts and universities across the UK.
I have a strong interest in increasing physical activity amongst people with psychosis. Many of the important barriers to physical activity are psychological ones and yet few research studies have placed psychological theory and intervention at the heart of research or practice. My belief in the benefits of exercise have led me to initiate and lead a departmental running group and encourage others to increase activity.
When I am not working on research at the Department of Psychiatry I work as a Consultant Clinical Psychologist for the Oxford Cognitive Therapy Centre (OCTC). This is a specialist CBT training and supervision centre with an international reputation. My area of particular interest is CBT for psychosis and I am the deputy lead for the OCTC PGCert in Enhanced CBT: Psychosis and Bipolar.
I completed my clinical doctorate at the University of Oxford. After qualifying I spent 10 years working in NHS clinical services including IAPT, specialist psychological services and inpatient units.
The psychological treatment of persistent persecutory delusions: an explanatory randomized controlled trial comparing a new theoretically-driven psychological treatment (Feeling Safe Programme) to befriending
FREEMAN D., (2021), Lancet Psychiatry
Diamond R. and Byrd E., (2020), J Affect Disord, 277