Dr Alexandra Pitman


Personal Profile

Name: Alexandra Pitman Email: a.pitman@ucl.ac.uk
Title: Dr Tel:
Department: Division of Psychiatry Fax:
Position: MRC Fellow Address: Charles Bell House , 67-73 Riding House Street , London, W1W 7EJ
Research Domain: Global Health, Neuroscience Web Page: Personal Web Page


Research Description

I am funded by a MRC Population Health Scientist Fellowship to investigate the impact of sudden bereavement on the mental health and social functioning of young adults. This cross-sectional study has surveyed young adults at a range of UK colleges and universities using both quantitative and qualitative methods. My PhD supervisors are Professor Michael King & Dr David Osborn, with additional qualitative supervision from Dr Fiona Stevenson in the UCL Department of Primary Care and Population Health. This study has been designed in collaboration with voluntary organisations specialising in bereavement, including Cruse Bereavement Care, the Samaritans, Widowed by Suicide and Survivors of Bereavement by Suicide. The link to the study website is here: http://www.ucl.ac.uk/mentalhealthsciences/researchgroupsareas/bereavementstudy

I am also funded by a MRC Centenary Early Career Award to investigate the help-seeking behaviour of young adults at times when they have felt suicidal or at risk of self-harm. This cross-sectional study has involved a national sample of adults under 45, who have provided quantitative and qualitative responses on-line. The link to the study website is here:

From 1 May 2014 I have been awarded a one year post-doc fellowship by the Guarantors of Brain, as part of their Neurology Entry and Exit Scholarship scheme. During this period I will develop applications for further post-doctoral work in the field of self-harm and suicide.   http://www.guarantorsofbrain.org/ 

Research Activities

Sudden Bereavement; suicide risk

suicide means restriction; self harm

Education Description


  • MSc in Psychiatric Research (UCL) - Cross-sectional studies
  • MSc in Clinical Mental Health Sciences - module leader
  • MRCPsych course (UCL/Royal Free rotation) - Epidemiology; Economic Evaluation;  Communication Skills
  • UCL Medical School - Depression; Eating Disorders
  • Birkbeck College - Health Policy and Health Promotion (course organiser)
  • LSE - Economic evaluation for public health clinicians and policy-makers
  • Imperial College Management School - International Fellowship Programme in Health Policy

Undergraduate supervision:

  • BSc in Human Sciences (UCL)
  • MBBS (UCL Medical School)

UCL Collaborators

External Collaborators




    • Pitman AL (2012). Reform of the coroners’ service in England and Wales: policy-making and politics. The Psychiatrist, 36, 1 - 5. doi:10.1192/pb.bp.111.036335
    • Pitman AL, Caine ED (2012). The role of the high-risk approach in suicide prevention. British Journal of Psychiatry, 201(3), - .
    • Pitman AL, Krysinska K, Osborn D, King M (2012). Suicide in young men. The Lancet, 379, 2383 - 2392. doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(12)60731-4


    • Pitman AL, Osborn DPJ, Wright CA, Nazareth I, King MB (2011). Cardiovascular Screening of People With Severe Mental Illness in England: Views of Service Users and Providers. PSYCHIAT SERV, 62(11), 1338 - 1345.
    • Pitman AL (2011). Edvard Munch (1863–1944) The Scream – 100 words. British Journal of Psychiatry, 198, 72 - 72. doi:10.1192/bjp.198.1.72
    • Pitman AL (2011). Reappraising the work of RB Kitaj. The Lancet, 378(9797), 1131 - . doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(11)61494-3
    • Pitman AL, Osborn DPJ (2011). Cross-cultural attitudes to help-seeking among individuals who are suicidal: new perspective for policy-makers. British Journal of Psychiatry, 199, 8 - 10. doi:10.1192/bjp.bp.110.087817


    • Pitman A (2010). Medicolegal reports in asylum applications: a framework for addressing the practical and ethical challenges. Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine, 103(3), 93 - 97.
    • Pitman A (2010). Asylum application process: the psychiatric patient’s experience. The Psychiatrist, 34(8), 344 - 348. doi:10.1192/pb.bp.109.024968
    • Pitman A (2010). Ismond Rosen (1924-1996) The Kiss: Psychiatry in Pictures. British Journal of Psychiatry, 196(1), 12 - 12.
    • Pitman A (2010). Why are psychosocial assessments following self-harm not completed?. The Psychiatrist, 34(12), 540 - .


    • Pitman A (2009). The natural history of PTSD in asylum seekers and refugees. Advances in Psychiatric Treatment, , - .
    • Pitman A (2009). The relationship between suicide risk and BMI in the obese range: a systematic review.


    • Pitman A (2008). Alexandra Reinhardt - River and Red Butterfly: Psychiatry in Pictures. British Journal of Psychiatry, 192(5), 332 - 332.
    • Pitman A, Beveridge A (2008). Edvard Munch and his contribution to the public understanding of mental illness. Quarterly Journal of Mental Health, 1(4), 21 - 24.
    • Pitman A, Tyrer P (2008). Implementing clinical guidelines for self harm – highlighting key issues arising from the NICE Guideline for Self-Harm. Psychology and Psychotherapy: Theory, Training and Practice (Special Issue: Implementing clinical guidelines in everyday practice), 8(4), 377 - 397. doi:10.1348/147608308X306897
    • Pitman A (2008). Humane rapid tranquillisation of an agitated patient with an implantable cardioverter defibrillator. British Journal of Hospital Medicine, 69(11), 652 - 653.
    • Pitman A (2008). Norris Embry (1921-1981) Untitled, 1979: Psychiatry in Pictures. British Journal of Psychiatry, 193(6), A21 - A21.
    • Pitman A (2008). Medical Classics: Evelyn Waugh's The Ordeal of Gilbert Pinfold. BMJ, 337(a2791), a2791 - a2791.
    • Pitman A (2008). Mark Rothko (1903-1970): Psychiatry in Pictures. British Journal of Psychiatry, 193(6), 484 - 484.


    • Casey P, Pitman A (2007). The Psychosocial Management of Deliberate Self-Harm: Part 1.
    • Pitman A, Casey P (2007). The Psychosocial Management of Deliberate Self-Harm: Part 2.
    • Pitman A, Catalan J (2007). Insidious undermining of the utility of the liaison nursing role. Psychiatric Bulletin, 31(1), 33 - 34.
    • Pitman A (2007). Therapeutic factors in the rehabilitation of prisoners and mentally-disordered offenders: the work of the Koestler Trust. Royal College of Psychiatrists London Division Newsletter, 4(3), 12 - 12.
    • Pitman A (2007). Policy on the prevention of suicidal behaviour; one treatment for all may be an unrealistic expectation. Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine, 100(10), 461 - 464.


    • Pitman AL, Tyrer P (2006). Prevention of suicidal behaviour: a suggested framework for the application of research evidence..
    • Pitman AL, Tyrer P (2006). Prevention of suicidal behaviour: a suggested framework for the application of research evidence..
    • Pitman A (2006). Louis Wain: Psychiatry in Pictures. British Journal of Psychiatry, 189(6), A22 - A22. doi:10.1192/bjp.189.6.A22


    • Simpson N, Anderson R, Sassi F, Pitman A, Lewis P, Tu K, Lannin H (2005). The cost-effectiveness of neonatal screening for cystic fibrosis: an analysis of alternative scenarios using a decision model. Cost Effectiveness Resource Allocation, 3(8), 1 - 11. doi:10.1186/1478-7547-3-8
    • Pitman A, Phelan M (2005). Physical health of patients in rehabilitation and recovery. Psychiatric Bulletin, 29(9), 354 - 354.


    • Mossialos EA, McKee M, Pitman A (2000). The uninsured and the US presidential election. Eurohealth, 5(4), 38 - 42.
    • Mossialos EM, McKee M, Pitman A (2000). Health at the hustings. BMJ, 320, 272 - 272.