Professor Sally Merry

CAMH Journal
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Professor Sally Merry

Professor Merry is a child and adolescent psychiatrist, the Cure Kids Duke Family Chair in Child and Adolescent Mental Health and the Head of the Department of Psychological Medicine, University of Auckland. She is Joint Editor of CAMH.

Professor Merry’s research focus has been on the development and implementation of effective therapies in child and adolescent mental health including computerised and mobile phone-based interventions. She led the development of SPARX, a computerised intervention for depression using a fantasy game format. This effective therapy attracted international awards and has been available as a national e-therapy service in New Zealand since 2014. She has carried out a number of large clinical and prevention trials to find better ways of delivering psychological therapies for mental health for children and adolescents. She established and led a team to develop and test an ecosystem of digital therapies, HABITS (Health Advances through Behavioural Intervention Technologies) for young people as part of the National Science Challenge, a Better Start E Tipu E Rea. This work has included the development of online screening, web and native apps and chatbots to support emotional regulation in younger and older adolescents, to address problems of self-harm and substance abuse and to provide online support for parents of younger children with behavioural or emotional problems.

Professor Merry has worked clinically in a number of settings with children and young people from pre-school age to late adolescence, mostly in community settings.

 

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