Kids research mental health (KRMH) has been established to develop an integrated research program focused on clinically relevant aetiological and interventional research in the Sydney children hospital network (SCHN). The overall objective of KRMH is to use research to contribute to the improvement of health outcomes for children and young people with mental illness. The KRMH is committed to producing high-quality scientific research that will inform future policy and service development initiatives locally and nationally, as well as contributing to the international evidence base. 

Our goals/objectives

The KRMH’s objectives include:

•Development and maintenance of the research culture and capacity in mental health services in SCHN.

•Directly undertaking and or leading research projects.

•Working collaboratively with SCHN Kids Research ethics, governance, medical records, communications, innovation.

•Supporting clinicians and other researchers across in developing and completing mental health clinical research projects.

•Supporting access to research training for clinical staff through external partners.

•Targeted support for clinicians to apply funding and make in higher degree research activities.

Our flagship research program — ‘Developing Mental Health Program’ — focusses on developing data analysis methods and outputs to support and enhance the mental health clinical care and outcomes for children and young people. This program represents a service-analysis-policy partnership between Sydney Children Hospitals Network Mental Health Service, InforMH (Systems Information and Analytics Unit, NSW Ministry of Health), and the Perinatal, Child and Youth Team of the Mental Health Branch of NSW Health). The secondary purpose of this program is to contribute research output of national and global significance regarding children and adolescent mental health.

Research strengths

·       Integration in clinical settings

·       Clinician involvement

·       Translation to practice

·       Mentoring and support for clinicians

·       Engagement with consumers and community

·       Focus on voices of children and young people through co-design and participatory research.

·       Multidisciplinary collaboration with other research groups

Our results/outcomes/solutions

Perkes et al. (2022). OCD BOUNCE: A Translational Framework for Clinical Care and Research.

Perkes et al. (2022). The making of child and adolescent psychiatrists in Australia and New Zealand.

Cooper et al. (2022). Development of a Clinician Directory for OCD

Dey et al. (2022). Rising temperatures and suicidal behaviour in children and adolescents.

Dyason et al. (2022). Falling through the cracks in science and clinical service–A call to action for people with OCD.

Hu et al. (2022). The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on paediatric health service use within one year after the first pandemic outbreak in New South Wales Australia – a time series analysis.

Sara et al. (2022). Growth in emergency department self-harm or suicidal ideation presentations in young people: Comparing trends before and since the COVID-19 first wave in New South Wales, Australia.

Sicouri et al. (2022). Anxiety disorders in children and adolescents.

Soler et al. (2022). Proxy-reported sensory measures for children and adolescents with neurodevelopmental disorders: A systematic review.

Perkes et al. (2020). Contamination compulsions and obsessive-compulsive disorder during COVID-19.

Perkes et al. (2019). Indications for psychiatric hospitalization of children and adolescents.

Soler et al. (2019). Sensory dysregulation in tic disorders is associated with executive dysfunction and comorbidities.

Soler et al. (2019). An exploratory study into an adapted use of the Alert Program for tic disorder in children.

Brakoulias et al. (2018). A call for prevention and early intervention in obsessive‐compulsive disorder.

Our experts/people

Senior Lecturer Dr Iain Perkes
Senior Lecturer

MD BMed BMed Sc FRANZCP Cert Child Adol Psych

Post-doctoral Research Fellow Dr Burcu Ozkul
Post-doctoral Research Fellow

PhD candidates


Jess Xu

Aaron Berger