Psychological Medicine, Lead for Mental Health Research Group
After qualifying in London, Professor Dickens spent a number of years in clinical medicine before completing basic psychiatry training in Manchester. His ongoing interest in clinical medicine meant he naturally moved to the interface between medicine and psychiatry. He completed his PhD on the psychiatric problems in people with chronic low back pain whilst simultaneously completing his clinical training as a liaison psychiatrist. He has worked mostly researching the causes, effects and treatments of emotional problems in people with chronic physical illness, whilst maintaining his clinical involvement in assessing and delivering psychiatric treatments to such people. He relocated to the University of Exeter Medical School in July 2011 to take up the post as Chair of Psychological Medicine, where he has continued to focus on the development and evaluation of interventions to improve the management of common mental disorders in people with chronic physical illness. He is joint lead with Prof Willem Kuyken on the NIHR PenCLAHRC funded project Determining the Feasibility and Acceptability of Mindfulness-Based Interventions in Depressed People with Chronic Physical Health Problems.