Christina van der Feltz - Cornelis
Chair of Psychiatry and Epidemiology



Professor Christina van der Feltz – Cornelis, psychiatrist-psychotherapist and epidemiologist, joined the University of York as one of the 60th Anniversary inspirational research leaders with a Chair of Psychiatry and Epidemiology in 2018. She moved to York from the Netherlands, where she held an endowed chair at Tilburg University as Professor of Social Psychiatry from 2010 - 2019. She is a member of the Mental Health and Addictions Research Group (MHARG) at the University of York’s Department of Health Sciences, and holds a joint appointment with the Hull York Medical School (HYMS).

Christina registered as a psychiatrist with full licence to practice in the UK and joined as an honorary consultant psychiatrist with Tees Esk and Wear Valley (TEWV) (2018). Christina provides a specialist assessment service and treatment for people with Somatic Symptom Disorder (SSD) in the City of York. Follow Christina @VanFeltz, at ORCID or at Linkedin, and MHARG @MHARG_york.

Christina is a world-renowned mental health researcher whose research draws on her clinical background; she was awarded a Cum Laude at her MD graduation at the School of Medicine Amsterdam, the Netherlands in 1988 and combines clinical work and academics ever since. She registered as psychiatrist and psychotherapist in 1992 and as an epidemiologist in 1996. She completed her doctorate (PhD 2002) on Psychiatric consultation for patients with somatoform disorder in general practice at VU University Medical Centre, Amsterdam. She taught psychiatry, epidemiology, consultation and research skills since and she generated competitive research income of € 6,6M, mostly as head applicant. Her research supervision has supported twelve successful PhD students with associated and ongoing post-doctoral research. Christina currently has one PhD student at Tilburg University in the Netherlands. She founded and directed the Clinical Centre for Body, Mind and Health at GGz Breburg, Tilburg (2010-2018), and together with her team won the Award Clinical Centre of Excellence (Keurmerk TOPGGz) in 2014.


  • MD Medicine, University of Amsterdam, the Netherlands 1988
  • MedSc Psychiatry, University of Amsterdam, 1992
  • Member of the Dutch Society of Psychiatrists and registered as psychotherapist, 1992
  • Reg VvE Epidemiology, 1996
  • PhD Medicine, VU University Medical Centre, Amsterdam, 2002
  • Reg SMWBO Epidemiology, 2006
  • International Fellow of the APA, 2013
  • Full license to practice gmc/ Honorary Consultant Psychiatry, NHS, UK, 2018



As a psychiatrist-psychotherapist and epidemiologist, Christina endeavours to conduct research leading to better understanding, diagnosis and treatment of common mental disorders such as depressive, anxiety, somatic symptom disorders and medically unexplained symptoms including chronic pain. She explores how to improve social functioning, such as Return To Work, of people with mental disorders, and how to improve suicide prevention. Christina collaborated in several EU Sanco and FP7 funded research projects aimed at suicide prevention, the European Alliance Against Depression (EAAD) and Optimizing Suicide Prevention programs and their Implementation in Europe (OSPI).

Christina is involved in agenda setting for mental health research at European level, in the context of ROAMER, an EU FP7 funded project, and on behalf of the European Association of Psychosomatic Medicine.

She uses designs such as general population as well as clinical epidemiological studies, clinical trials, proof of concept studies, systematic reviews of trials as well as mixed methods and Delphi study designs.

Christina’s projects include the first trials to date of psychiatric consultation and collaborative care in the Netherlands.

  • For Medically Unexplained Symptoms the widely cited POCO trial, which formed the evidential base for recommendations in the Multidisciplinary Guideline for MUS and somatoform disorder in 2011, and for the guideline for psychiatric consultation;
  • For depressive disorder the CC:DIP trial, performed in primary care, which showed high efficacy compared to usual care and provided the evidential base for recommendations in the update of the NHG-wide depression standard recommendations;
  • The CC:DOC trial performed in occupational care, which received an editorial in the British Journal of Psychiatry;
  • And the CC:DIM trial, an innovative collaborative care model performed in the general hospital setting;
  • For anxiety disorders the CC:PAD trial funded by the Netherlands Organisation for Health Research and Development, showing the efficacy of a stepped collaborative care approach compared to usual care.
  • For Return To Work in common mental disorders the ECO trial, funded by the Netherlands Organisation for Health Research and Development, showing the efficacy of a blended eHealth intervention combined with collaborative care aimed at Return To Work. This work was awarded the Burgerpenning for excellent research in the field of Work and Mental Health in 2017.

Christina’s work on the patient-doctor relationship is widely cited; the PDRQ9 questionnaire that she developed for its evaluation from the patient perspective has been translated and validated in many countries. Also, her work on Shared Decision Making in combination with blended e-health is well received.  


Research group(s)

  • Mental Health and Addictions Research Group (MHARG) at the University of York’s Department of Health Sciences

Available PhD research projects

  • Pathogenic mechanism in conversion disorder


Christina is interested in supervising PhDs in the following areas: Somatic Symptom Disorder, Chronic Pain, Medically Unexplained Symptoms, Return To Work, Suicide Prevention


Full publications list

Christina co-authored over 200 international and national articles on research, guidelines and teaching, book chapters and a monograph, with currently 156 PubMed citations (for other papers, see google scholar profile), including 4 citation classics, one WoS Top Paper on the ROAMER Research agenda (2015) and one highly cited in field paper in WoS on Work participation in Mental Health (2018). Her current Web of Science SCI H-index is 28, and Google Scholar H-Index 38. 



  • Christina teaches undergraduate medical students on the topic of stress and resilience in the HYMS SSIP program

  • Christina offers undergraduate medical students the opportunity to work with her research team in the context of HYMS Inspire projects


  • Christina has extensive experience in Postgraduate teaching

External activities


Christina was awarded the distinction International Fellow at the American Psychiatric Association (APA) in recognition of significant contributions to Psychiatry (2013).

She is a member of the Dutch Psychiatric Association (NVvP) and was member of its Board(2002-2005) and of its Scientific Committee (CWA)(2016-2017).

She is a member of the International College of Psychosomatic Medicine (ICPM), of the European Association of Psychosomatic Medicine (EAPM), and of the Academy of Psychosomatic Medicine (APM). 

Editorial duties

  • Associate Editor of Psychosomatic Medicine specialty section of Frontiers in Psychiatry since 2017
  • Member of the Editorial Board of the European Journal of Psychiatry.
  • Member of the International Advisory Board of the International Journal of Social Psychiatry.

Invited talks and conferences

Only the invited lectures of the last 5 years are mentioned here. Some of them can be viewed on YouTube. Keynote lectures are in bold. 

  • Prevention of suicide mortality in the Netherlands. At the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, Department of Psychiatry, May 4th (2018) New York City, New York, USA.
  • Current topics for mental health research. What does the patient need and what can we do? At the MHARG, Dept. of health science, University of York, February 23rd 2017 York, UK. 
  • Delphi Study EURONET-SOMA research priorities survey. At the EURONET-SOMA Conference, Dept. of Psychosomatic Medicine and Psychotherapy, University of Hamburg, November 2-4  2016, Hamburg.
  • A translational approach on somatic symptom disorders: A proposal for a study design. At the EURONET-SOMA Conference, Dept. of Psychosomatic Medicine and Psychotherapy, University of Hamburg, July 13-15th 2016, Hamburg.
  • Clinical Research priorities in ROAMER: the Roadmap for mental health research in Europe. At the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience in Kings College, London, November 23st 2015.
  • Primary Care Psychiatry: how do you feed the needs of general practitioners and patients into research, and what comes next? At Manchester University, November 24th 2015.
  • Primary Care psychiatry: how do you develop evidence based practice from research? At the Research Workshop General Practice Community, January 22nd 2014, at Middelfart, Denmark.
  • Need for Research Diagnostic Criteria as a basis for clinical research in Europe. At the invitational conference Future Directions in Research Diagnostic Criteria for Mental and Behavioural Disorders: A European Meeting, organized by WHO, NIMH, and EU, February 17-19th  2014 in Madrid, Spain.

Media coverage

  • Christina is in the media regularly, television, radio, newspapers and journals, as well as on websites. Christina’s work on the Patient Doctor Relationship was discussed in the Huffington Post 

Contact details

Prof. Christina van der Feltz - Cornelis
Chair of Psychiatry and Epidemiology

Tel: 01904 32(1361)