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NIHR Mental Health Mission – what you need to know

NIHR Mental Health Mission – what you need to know
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The government wants to make sure that the NHS uses the latest innovations and creates a prime environment for industry to invest in the Life Sciences sector – its plans for that are summed up in a series of ‘missions’ for certain priority areas. Mental health is one of these areas, and so is addiction. The investment, which started quietly in 2023 and goes on for five years, is good news for mental health and addiction researchers.

The Mental Health Mission (MHM) will increase capacity in mental health research through the provision of relevant training and creation of better systems to support industry led research and investment across the UK. Specific focus will be paid to addressing both areas of unmet need and high burden of mental illness.

What’s happening on the ground?

The MHM will provide significant funding support to partners nationally: the two principal locations of the project in Birmingham (Midlands Translational Centre) and Liverpool (Mental Health Research for Innovation Centre – M-RIC), as well as to the NIHR Mental Health Translational Research Collaboration (MH-TRC). The MHM has national work streams for an aligned mental health workforce in the following areas: Capacity development and training; Data and Digital; Children and Young people’s mental health; Early psychosis; Mood disorder.

Who’s leading the work?

Phase 1 of the Mental Health Mission will be overseen and managed by the MH-TRC, which is led by Professor Rachel Upthegrove (University of Birmingham). The Mental Health Research for Innovation Centre (M-RIC) is led by Professor Nusrat Husain and Professor Iain Buchan in Liverpool and the Midlands Translational Centre (MTC) is led by Professor Rachel Upthegrove Professor Steven Marwaha in Birmingham. See who’s leading specific workstreams here.

What does it mean for researchers?

There are likely to be more job, fellowship, training and funding opportunities in these areas and these departments. We at the incubator will be advertising such opportunities when they arise, so watch this space.


Find out more about the Mental Health Mission sites and the priority areas: Mental Health Mission (MHM) Overview – NIHR Oxford Health Biomedical Research Centre

There is also an Addiction Mission too. We’ll have more information about that here soon!

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