Helen Crimlisk

School of Health and Related Research

Honorary Senior Lecturer


Full contact details

Helen Crimlisk
School of Health and Related Research

Helen trained in medicine at Guy’s Hospital Medical School (now Kings College, London) qualifying in 1988 where she did an intercalated degree in Psychology. After graduation she undertook a core medical rotation and experience in neurology, before deciding that psychiatry was much more interesting!

She trained in psychiatry at the Maudsley, undertaking research in neuropsychiatry at the Institute of Neurology. Following this she had a career break for 5 years, living in Marburg, Germany where she had her 2 children. She returned to the UK to complete training part time and became a part time consultant at Sheffield Health and Social Care Foundation Trust in 2005.

In recent years, she has been appointed psychiatry teaching lead with Sheffield Medical School, overseeing the Phase 3a placements in psychiatry and also leading a number of initiatives to support students’ interest in mental health and psychiatry across the whole course.

As a consultant she has worked in rehabilitation, community mental health and currently works as an inpatient consultant on an acute psychiatric ward.

She is Deputy Medical Director at Sheffield Health and Social Care Foundation Trust with particular interests in medical education, workforce, quality improvement and service user engagement and experience.

Phase 3B Narrative in Recovery Masterclass


Qualifications and prizes

BSc Psychology II(i)(1985)
MBBS (Hons) (1988)
MRCP (1991)
MRCPsych (1995)
British Neuropsychiatry Association Prize (1997)
Section 12 Approved psychiatrist (2004)
CCT in Adult Psychiatry, endorsement in liaison psychiatry (2005)
Health Foundation Generation Q Fellow (2015)
Masters in Quality and Leadership (2017) (Ashridge)
Sheffield Medical School: Clinical Teaching Award (2018)

Research interests
  • I have undertaken a range of projects relating to Quality Improvement in mental health, particularly regarding issues of co-production and the value of peer working and development and promotion of compassion in staff.
  • Our research group at University of Sheffield is looking at the value of using lived experience to enhance teaching and training.
  • I am part of a group evaluation of student experience of Balint Groups in undergraduates and their value in developing empathy and compassion.
  • Youth mental health and transition I have worked with SHSC, RCPsych and SCIE in the development of transition services for young people. https://www.scie.org.uk/socialcaretv/video-player.asp?v=transitions2
  • Responses to #BantheBash initiative. We have been using a world cafe style methodology for examining students’ experiences of bashing at medical school and their responses to this. Narrative evaluation underway
  • ADHD Health Tracker Project (CLAHRC) - tracking young people’s care using electronic records monitoring and PROMs from childhood into adulthood. I have also published work on models of care in ADHD, gender and ADHD and ADHD in older people.
Teaching activities

Sheffield University

  • Phase 1 Brain and behaviour and mind body dualism
  • Phase 1 Dementia experienced through drama learning experience
  • Phase 2 History and mental state examination in psychiatry
  • Phase 3a Introduction to psychiatry, classification of mental disorders, assessment, history and mental state examination, small group interview skills, seminars on ethics in psychiatry and personality disorder, patient as educator session
  • History and Examination in Psychiatry – Physician Associate Students
  • Learning initiatives:
  • PEEPs (Psychiatry Early Exposure Programme in Sheffield) an opportunity for interested medical students from 1st year to shadow psychiatry trainees over 5 years

Expansion of Patient as Educator session to include routine provision for Phase 3a students

Development of case-based discussion groups & portfolio project for students on psychiatry placement: case description, formulation and reflective practice. Narrative exploration project underway.

Development of 6 week SSC opportunities e.g. early intervention in psychiatry services, psychotherapy, CAMHs, forensic psychiatry, liaison psychiatry, gender disorders, perinatal psychiatry, drug and alcohol services, community mental health work, inpatient psychiatry, neurodevelopmental disorders, eating disorders.

Development of a range of 3B Masterclasses in areas related to psychiatry, mental health and wellbeing:

Sheffield Health and Social Care NHS Foundation Trust

  • Development of educators (medical, nursing and service user) within psychiatry placements: regular skills share appreciative inquiry-informed sessions promote good practice and encourage innovative leaching and learning developments.
  • Psychiatry book group experience for medical students on placement, reading and reflection session exploring first person narrative writing (also expanded into monthly psychiatry trainees’ book club).

HEE Sheffield and Leeds:

  • MRCPsych course: Neuropsychiatry, Leadership, Quality improvement & Medical management

Sheffield Hallam University:

  • AMPH course: Assessment and classification
  • Physician Associate teaching: Assessment, risk & classification, Common mental health diagnoses

University of Leeds

  • Art Therapy MA: Psychiatry, the arts & the future
Professional activities and memberships

Professional memberships

• Elected member of GAP Executive Committee RCPsych (2013-16)
• Co-opted member of GAP Executive Committee RCPsych (2013-present)
• Member Q Community (2017-present)
• Member of the Undergraduate Leads Committee, RCPsych (2015-present)
• Elected member of Academic Faculty Executive, RCPsych (2016-present)
• Member of Case Management Group, Student Affairs team, Sheffield Medical School (2016-present)

  • Crimlisk H L & McManus I C. The Effect of Personal Illness Experience on Career Preference in Medical Students: Medical Education (1987) 21:464-467
  • Dent TH, Gillard JH, Aarons EJ, Crimlisk HL & Smyth-Pigott PJ: Preregistration house officers in the four Thames regions: Survey of education and workload. British Medical Journal (1990) 300:713-6
  • Dent TH, Gillard JH, Aarons EJ, Crimlisk HL & Smyth-Pigott PJ: Preregistration house officers in the four Thames regions: Comparison of education and workload in teaching and non-teaching hospitals. British Medical Journal (1990) 300::716-8
  • Rudge P, Miller D H, Crimlisk H L & Thorpe J. Does Beta-interferon cause an initial exacerbation of Multiple Sclerosis? (letter) The Lancet (1995) 345:580
  • Crimlisk H & Phelan M. Mental health tribunals. British Journal of Psychiatry (1995) 167:116-117
  • Ramsay R, Johnson S & Crimlisk H. Gender Stereotyping and Mental Illness. British Journal of Hospital Medicine (1996) 55(9):537-538
  • Crimlisk H & Welch S. Women and psychiatry. British Journal of Psychiatry (1996) 168:6-10
  • Crimlisk H. “The Little Imitator”- Porphyria - a neuropsychiatric disorder. Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry (1997) 62:319-328 http://jnnp.bmj.com/content/62/4/319
  • Klasen H, Crimlisk H & Welch S. Women, mental health and the family. Psychiatric Bulletin (1997) 21(8):467-468
  • Keaney F, Crimlisk H & Bearn J. Co morbidity of mental disorders with substance abuse (letter). British Journal of Psychiatry (1997) 171: 484-485
  • Crimlisk HL, Bhatia K, Cope H, David A, Marsden CD & Ron MA. Slater Revisited: 6 year follow up study of patients with medically unexplained motor symptoms. British Medical Journal (1998) 316:582-586 http://www.bmj.com/content/316/7131/582
  • Spence SA, Crimlisk HL, Cope H, Ron MA & Grasby PM. Discrete neurophysiological correlates in prefrontal cortex during hysterical and feigned disorder of movement. (research letter). The Lancet (2000) 355: 1243-1244
  • Crimlisk HL, Bhatia K, Cope H, David A, Marsden CD & Ron MA. Patterns of referral in patients with medically unexplained symptoms. Journal of Psychosomatic Medicine (2000) 49(3):217-9 https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0022399900001677
  • Reuber M, Mitchell AJ, Howlett S, Crimlisk HL, Grünewald RA. Functional Symptoms in Neurology – questions and answers. Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry (2005) 76:307-314 http://jnnp.bmj.com/content/62/4/319
  • Crimlisk H L. Developing integrated services for patients with ADHD in adulthood within Adult Mental Health Teams. Advances in Psychiatric Treatment (2011) 17:461-469 http://apt.rcpsych.org/content/aptrcpsych/17/6/461.full.pdf
  • Alakeson V, Boardman J, Boland B, Crimlisk H, Harrison C, Iliffe S, Khan M, O'Shea R, Patterson J. Debating personal health budgets Psychiatric Bulletin 1 February (2016) http://pb.rcpsych.org/content/40/1/34.full
  • Slater G, Crimlisk H. ADHD in Women in: The Female Mind: A User’s Guide Royal College of Psychiatrists Editor: Abel, K (2017)
  • Monk A, Hind D, Crimlisk H. Balint Groups in Medical Education: a systematic review Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy (2018) 32: 61-86 http://www.tandfonline.com/eprint/F7EWfc4srzN9jhymGsK7/full
  • Crimlisk H Co-production: Everyone’s talking about it, but am I really doing it? Health Foundation Blog http://www.health.org.uk/blog/co-production-everybody%E2%80%99s-talking-about-it-am-i-really-doing-it
  • Linnington H, Crimlisk H. ADHD in older adults. Seminars in Old Age Psychiatry, Cambridge University Press Editors: Butler, R and Katona, C (in press)