Olivia Kirtley

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Olivia is a research psychologist in the Suicidal Behaviour Research Laboratory (SBRL) at the University of Glasgow. Broadly, Olivia’s research interests lie in using biological and psychological methods to investigate self-harm and suicidal behaviour. Her work explores some of the factors that may be involved in someone moving from thinking about self-harm to acting on those thoughts, with a special focus on emotional and physical pain sensitivity. Olivia is currently working on a project investigating how childhood adversity may relate to suicidal thoughts and behaviours in adulthood.


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Blended therapy for men who self-harm #DigiMHweek


Olivia Kirtley looks at a qualitative study of a blended therapy using problem solving therapy with a customised smartphone app in men who present to hospital with intentional self-harm.

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safeTALK for youth suicide prevention: new review finds no evidence of safety or efficacy


Olivia Kirtley and Alys Cole-King appraise a new systematic review of the safeTALK school and community based youth suicide prevention intervention, which finds no evidence of safety or efficacy for this well established programme.

The blog also features a podcast featuring Olivia and Alys, along with Professor Stanley Kutcher, the lead author of this new review.

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Self-harm in primary care: more prescribing than referrals

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Olivia Kirtley and Alys Cole-King present a major new cohort study, which includes worrying evidence about the clinical management of patients in primary care following self-harm.

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Self-harm in young people: how can we support parents and families?


Olivia Kirtley summarises an important new qualitative study that explores the impact of self-harm in young people on their parents and families.

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Suicide risk assessment and intervention: need for a new approach?

A young man suffering from Social Anxiety stands alone as a group of people walk past rapidly

Olivia Kirtley and Alys Cole-King consider the implications of a new BMJ review on suicide risk assessment and intervention in people with mental illness.

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