Dr Heather O'Mahen
Senior Lecturer in Clinical Psychology


Office Hours: Monday 11.00-12.00, Wednesday 15.00-16.00

 Orcid ID: orcid.org/0000-0003-3458-430X

Dr. O'Mahen is a Research Clinical Psychologist. She completed a Clinical MS at the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs (USA) and a PhD at the University of Georgia in Athens, Georgia (USA), an APA accredited program. She did her clinical internship year at the James H. Quillen VA (APA accredited). After completing her research and clinical training, she undertook a clinical postdoctoral fellowship in perinatal psychology at the University of Michigan, Department of Psychiatry (APA accredited).  From 2005-2007 Dr. O'Mahen worked as an Assistant Professor at the University of Michigan-Dearborn. From 2005-2009 she was an adjunct research investigator at the University of Michigan Department of Psychiatry. She joined the Mood Disorders Centre (MDC) and Psychology Department at the University of Exeter in 2007, and has been a Senior Lecturer in the MDC since 2008. From 2012 to April 2013 Dr. O'Mahen worked in the NHS at the Haldon Unit as an Academic Psychologist. 


Dr. O'Mahen is an executive member of the BPS Perinatal Faculty and a NICE - Expert Adviser for the Centre for Clinical Practice. Dr. O'Mahen was a member of the Guidelines Development Group (GDG) for the 2014 NICE revised Antenatal and Postnatal Mental Health Guidelines, the Perinatal Access and Waiting Time Expert Reference Group (ERG), and the Department of Health Perinatal Quality Standards Group. Dr. O'Mahen specialises clinically in Intepersonal Psychotherapy (IPT) and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) for anxiety and depression, with a particular focus on Behavioural approaches. She is involved in the provision of clinical services through the ACCEPT clinic at the University of Exeter, where she leads the Perinatal Clinical Service, which provides treatments for antenatal and postnatal anxiety and depression; and has co-designed and delivered a Behavioural Activation with Dr. Kim Wright and a group-based treatment for chronic PTSD comorbid with depression integrating exposure, compassion and interpersonal components with Dr. Anke Karl. She regularly provides training in psychological treatments for Perinatal Mental Health. 


Dr. O'Mahen recently worked with Elizabeth Van der Beugel on an artist-in-residency project around women's identities as they encounter mental health problems during pregnancy and postnatally. Please see the website for further details: http://www.artsandcultureexeter.co.uk/elizabeth-van-der-beugel


Dr. O'Mahen and Netmums.com have worked together with women who have suffered from postnatal depression to develop and test an online intervention for postnatal depression. The intervention has been tested both in a self-help and guided self-help format. The intervention is freely available to the public and health care professionals at this link: http://www.netmums.com/parenting-support/depression-and-anxiety/netmums-helping-with-depression-course.


Dr. O'Mahen is working with IAPT providers to translate the Netmums Helping with Depression course into guided self-help and group based materials, appropriate for delivery in IAPT, primary care, and other mental health settings. These materials will shortly be available via the Netmums website.


Research group links

Contact details

Internal tel4651
Tel+44 (0) 1392 724651
AddressWashington Singer Laboratories
University of Exeter
Perry Road
Prince of Wales Road

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