Welcome to the Mental Elf

Does this look familiar?

This website will help you find just what you need to keep up-to-date with all of the important and reliable mental health research and guidance.

You don’t have to waste time looking at dozens of websites and articles every week.

Our team of mental health experts post updates every day with short and snappy summaries that highlight evidence-based publications relevant to mental health practice in the UK and further afield.

You can be the first to hear about key guidance, systematic reviews and high quality research and information.

No jargon, no misinformation, no spin, just what you need.

Who started the Mental Elf?

The blog was started by André Tomlin in May 2011. André’s an Information Scientist and has worked in mental health since the late nineties, formerly at the University of Oxford Centre for Evidence-Based Mental Health and since 2002 as MD of Minervation Ltd an evidence-based healthcare consultancy based in Oxford.

After  2 very successful years of blogging as the Mental Elf, André decided to invite colleagues to join him as contributors to the site. It’s great to involve a wide range of people in this venture, to bring in a fresh perspective and their considerable knowledge and clinical experience.

Who writes for the Mental Elf?

We have an ever-expanding team of people who contribute to the site. The group includes senior clinicians, mental health professionals, journal editors, researchers, academics, students and information scientists:

Do you have an elf in you, fighting to get out?

Click on the little pointy eared fella to find out more about writing for the Mental Elf

  1. Clive Adams, Chair of Mental Health Services Research and Co-ordinating Editor of the Cochrane Schizophrenia Group at the University of Nottingham
  2. Sally Adams, Lecturer in Health Psychology at the University of Bath
  3. Lia Ali, Consultant Psychiatrist & Clinical Lead for Digital Health, South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust
  4. Eva Alisic, Psychologist and Research Fellow at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia
  5. Rachel Allan, Practice Leader for The Royal Mencap Society
  6. Steve Appleton, Managing Director, Contact Consulting
  7. Douglas Badenoch, Director of Minervation Ltd
  8. John Baker, Senior Lecturer at the University of Manchester
  9. Vishal Bhavsar, Wellcome Trust Clinical Research Training Fellow in Epidemiology, Institute of Psychiatry
  10. Helen Bould, Wellcome Trust Doctoral Training Fellow at the Department of Psychiatry, University of Oxford
  11. Amy Broadbent, Research Assistant, Cambridge
  12. Martin Brunet, GP from the Binscombe Medical Centre
  13. Lisa Burscheidt, Assistant Librarian at North East London NHS Foundation Trust
  14. Sarah Carr, Independent Consultant, Sarah Carr and Associates Ltd
  15. Brant Cebulla, Development Director for the Vitamin D Council in California, USA
  16. Emma Cernis, Research Assistant, Oxford
  17. Sarah Chapman, Information Specialist at UK Cochrane Centre
  18. Paul Christiansen, Lecturer at the University of Liverpool
  19. Mick Cooper, Professor of Counselling, School of Psychological Sciences and Health, University of Strathclyde, Scotland
  20. Jake Crawshaw, PhD candidate at the Institute of Pharmaceutical Science, King’s College London
  21. Ioana Cristea, Senior Assistant Professor at Babes-Bolyai University, Cluj-Napoca and a Research Fellow at the University of Pisa, Italy
  22. Ian Cummins, Senior Lecturer in Social Work, University of Salford
  23. Caroline De Brun, Knowledge and Evidence Manager, Public Health England Knowledge and Library Services
  24. Ailsa Donnelly, Lay Chair of the PRIMER group
  25. Norah Essali, Medical student, University of Kalamoon, Syria
  26. Matt Field, Professor of Psychology at the University of Liverpool
  27. Meg Fluharty, Research Assistant, Tobacco and Alcohol Research Group, University of Bristol
  28. Andrés Fonseca, Consultant Psychiatrist and CEO of Virtually Free
  29. Suzi Gage, PhD Epidemiologist at the University of Bristol & Blogger at the Guardian Science Network
  30. Amy Green, Academic Clinical Lecturer at the University of Bristol
  31. Amanda Harris, Psychologist and Director of the Australian Child & Adolescent Trauma, Loss & Grief Network
  32. Helge Hasselmann, Research Masters Student in Clinical and Cognitive Neurosciences at Maastricht University
  33. Simon Hatcher, Full Professor of Psychiatry at The University of Ottawa
  34. Jessamy Hibberd, Chartered Clinical Psychologist
  35. Kerrie-Anne Ho, PhD Candidate, University of New South Wales, Australia
  36. Mark Horowitz, Training Psychiatrist from Australia who is completing a PhD at King’s College London
  37. Maxine Howard, PhD student at University College London
  38. Samei Huda, Consultant Psychiatrist, Pennine Care, Manchester
  39. Liz Hughes, Professor of Mental Health at University of Huddersfield and South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust
  40. Alex Jarram, PhD student at University College London
  41. Sameer Jauhar, Research Fellow and Honorary Consultant Psychiatrist at the Institute of Psychiatry
  42. Susie Johnson, Recent Graduate from Bristol University
  43. Andrew Jones, Post-doctoral researcher at the University of Liverpool
  44. Joe Judge, Clinical Psychologist, Hamilton Psychological Therapies Team, Lanarkshire, Scotland
  45. Patrick Kennedy-Williams, Trainee Clinical Psychologist & Doctoral Student, University of Oxford
  46. Sarah Knowles, Research Fellow, NIHR School for Primary Care Research
  47. Jennifer Laidlaw, PGY-5 Resident in Psychiatry, University of Toronto
  48. Alex Langford, Trainee Psychiatrist, South-east London
  49. Jennifer Lau, University Lecturer at the University of Oxford. Director of the Researching Emotional Disorders and Development (REDD) lab
  50. Keith Laws, Professor of Cognitive Neuropsychology at the University of Hertfordshire
  51. Kirsten Lawson, Consultant Liaison Psychiatrist and Clinical Lead for Liaison Psychiatry Services at Kent & Medway NHS and Social Care Partnership NHS Trust
  52. Colleen Loo, Professor of Psychiatry, University of New South Wales, Australia
  53. Maartje Luijten, Assistant Professor, Behavioural Science Institute, Radboud University Nijmegen, The Netherlands
  54. Lucy Maddox, NHS Clinical Psychologist, Lecturer and BSA Media Fellow
  55. Sarah Man, Staff Nurse, Child and Adolescent Mental Health Unit
  56. Sammy Mann, Clinical Psychologist
  57. Joanna Martin, PhD Student at Cardiff University
  58. Olivia Maynard, Research Associate, Tobacco and Alcohol Research Group at the University of Bristol
  59. Iain McDougall, Specialist trainee in General Adult Psychiatry and Psychotherapy, Belfast
  60. John McGowan, Director and Academic Director of the Clinical Psychology Training Scheme at the Salomons Centre for Applied Psychology, Kent
  61. Kate McLaughlin, Clinical Psychologist and Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychology at the University of Washington, USA
  62. Marcus Munafò, Professor of Biological Psychology at the University of Bristol
  63. Claire Mokrysz, PhD Student, University College London
  64. Josephine Neale, Trainee Psychiatrist in North London
  65. Nicola Newhouse, Researcher at Health Experiences Research Group, University of Oxford
  66. Claire Niedzwiedz, Postdoctoral Researcher, Centre for Research on Environment, Society and Health at the University of Edinburgh
  67. Elly O’Brien, Information Scientist, London
  68. Andrew O’Shaughnessy, Consultant in Public Health in Bradford & Airedale and Visiting Research Fellow at the University of Leeds
  69. Gozde Ozakinci, Health Psychologist and Lecturer in health psychology at the University of St Andrews
  70. Laurence Palfreyman, Assistant Psychologist in South London
  71. Christopher Pell, In-patient General Adult Psychiatrist at the Susan Carnegie Centre in Angus, Scotland for NHS Tayside
  72. Paul Ramchandani, Reader in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry & Deputy Head, The Centre for Mental Health, Imperial College London
  73. Matt Ravenhall, Final year Biology student at the University of York
  74. Abi Rose, Lecturer in Psychology at the University of Liverpool
  75. Emma Saddleton, Research Worker and part-time MSc student at the Institute of Psychiatry, London
  76. Christopher Sampson, Health Economist at the University of Nottingham
  77. Andrew Shepherd, Doctoral research Fellow at the University of Manchester and Higher Trainee in Forensic Psychiatry
  78. Lucy Simons, Research Fellow at NIHR MindTech Healthcare Technology Cooperative, Institute of Mental Health, University of Nottingham
  79. Mark Smith, IAPT Clinician working for Steps2Change and independent Psychotherapist Trainer
  80. David Steele, Junior Doctor with an interest in psychology, psychiatry and public health
  81. Caroline Struthers, Training Coordinator for The Cochrane Collaboration
  82. Rebecca Syed, Researcher, King’s College London
  83. Rupert Thurston, Junior Doctor working in General Adult Psychiatry in the West Midlands
  84. Caroline Tomes, Public Health Specialty Registrar currently working in Cambridge
  85. André Tomlin, Managing Director of Minervation Ltd
  86. Raphael Underwood, PhD candidate at the Institute of Psychiatry, King’s College London
  87. Kathryn Walsh, Research Associate at the University of Birmingham
  88. Michael Walton, PhD student at Manchester Metropolitan University
  89. Fiona Warner-Gale, Joint Director of Associate Development Solutions Ltd
  90. Andrew Watson, Clinical Research Fellow in Psychiatry at the University of Edinburgh
  91. Stephen Wood, Professor of Adolescent Brain Development and Mental Health at the University of Birmingham
  92. Fabio Zucchelli, Sport and Exercise Psychology MSc student

We’re adding to our network of writers all the time, so find out more if you’re interested in getting involved yourself.

Who decides what evidence is included on the website?

We scour over 400 databases, journals, websites and other feeds to bring you the best available mental health evidence.  Items are selected using an evidence-based inclusion criteria to ensure they are relevant to UK practice and based on high quality research, policy and guidance.

The selection process has no input from any external bodies, publishers, sponsors or commercial organisations.

We critically appraise the material we find using the CASP critical appraisal checklists.

Press coverage

Are there more elves for different health topics?

We are adding to our National Elf Service all the time.  Check out these other elves:

We are also working on a Child Elf, which we hope to launch in early 2015.

The Woodland is getting busier every year.

The Woodland is getting busier every year.

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André Tomlin

André Tomlin
André started the Mental Elf website in May 2011. He has worked as an Information Scientist in Mental Health since the late nineties; initially at Oxford University's Centre for Evidence-Based Mental Health and since 2002 as the Managing Director of Minervation Ltd. He loves blogging, tweeting and elfing! He also has established interests in evidence-based healthcare, usability testing, social media, coproduction and mHealth.

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