IMH Lunchtime Seminar - Dr Sarah Cassidy

Old Gym LG06
Monday 14 October 2019 (13:00-14:00)


We are pleased to invite you to the next instalment of our IMH Lunchtime Seminar Series on Monday 14 October led by guest speaker Dr Sarah Cassidy from the University of Nottingham.

Dr Sarah Cassidy is an Assistant Professor of Psychology at the University of Nottingham. Prior to this Dr Cassidy spent two years as a post-doctoral researcher at the Autism Research Centre (ARC), University of Cambridge, before starting her own research group at Coventry University. Dr Cassidy is currently a visiting researcher in the ARC Cambridge, and the Institute of Neuroscience at Newcastle University, collaborating on a number of projects exploring mental health and suicidality in autism. She is Principal Investigator on the Mental Health in Autism project funded by the ESRC, and the first Psychological Autopsy study in autism funded by NIHR-CLAHRC and Autistica. Dr Cassidy's areas of expertise include autism, mental health, self-harm and suicide prevention, social cognition and psychology.

Talk title and abstract:

"Understanding and preventing suicide in partnership with autistic people"

Up to 66% of autistic people report having contemplated suicide, and up to 35% report having attempted suicide. Large scale national studies show that autistic people with or without co-occurring intellectual disability are significantly more likely to die by suicide than the general population, with suicide a leading cause of early death in autistic people. However, both mental health and suicide in autism are poorly understood and under-researched. This talk will cover a program of work aiming to better assess, understand and prevent suicidal thoughts and behaviours in autism, in partnership with autistic people and those who support them. First, results of a 3-year priority setting partnership facilitated by the James Lind Alliance, to identify the top 10 autism community priorities for future suicide prevention research. Second, results from a 3-year project developing a new tool to better identify suicidal thoughts and behaviours in partnership with autistic adults for use in research. Third, results from participatory research aiming to understand why autistic people are more at risk of suicide, and what kind of suicide prevention strategies might be needed for the unique needs of this group.
Lastly, areas for future potential research will be highlighted in light of community priorities.”

Drinks and refreshments will be provided and all welcome to attend.