Accessibility statement


Staff within the Department of Health Sciences have a strong track record of successful involvement in research trials in both the addiction and mental health fields. The majority of these trials have been conducted with some form of collaboration with York Trials Unit, a UKCRC fully registered trials unit based within the Department.

This theme focusses on developing and testing interventions that help people who already have, or are affected by addictive behaviour or mental health problems. Researchers working within this theme believe in prevention, in intervening as early as possible to avoid problems, or to make them less severe and enduring if already present. Working with trialists in York Trials Unit, researchers within the Mental Health and Addictions Research Group (MHARG) are well placed to conduct rigorous randomised controlled trials (RCTs) that evaluate intervention effects with as little bias as possible, both within the NHS and similar healthcare environments, and in other settings.


Community Pharmacies Mood Intervention Study (CHEMIST): A Feasibility and Pilot Study

The study aims to evaluate the delivery of brief psychological support via community pharmacies to people living with long-term health conditions who will be at an increased risk of developing depression.

Project page

CASPER PLUS: Collaborative care in screen positive elders with major depressive disorders.

In this study we will conduct a large scale randomised trial of the effectiveness of screening and low intensity psychosocial interventions for older people (over 65s) with moderate to severe depression.

Project page


In this study we conducted a randomised controlled trial looking at the clinical and cost effectiveness of a “bespoke smoking cessation” intervention for people with severe mental ill health such as schizophrenia or bipolar disorder.

Link to project page

The SHARD Trial

The SHARD Trial examined a self-help booklet for older people with subthreshold (low severity) depression. Funded by the National Institute for Health Research.

Project page

RESPECT: Randomised Evaluation Sexual Health Promotion Evidence for Care and Treatment: A feasibility study of an intervention to promote sexual health for people with serious mental illness (SMI)

RESPECT aims to develop an evidence-supported and co-produced manualised sexual health intervention designed for people with SMI in the UK and assess the feasibility and acceptability of the intervention delivered within mental health services.

Project page

Completed projects

PROTECT: Preventing blood borne virus infection in people who inject drugs in the UK

A mixed methods project with six complementary phases which aims to: i) develop an evidence based psychosocial intervention to reduce transmission risks among people who inject drugs at risk of acquiring or transmitting blood borne viruses and; ii) conduct a feasibility randomised controlled trial of the intervention.

Link to project page.

COBRA (Cost and Outcome of BehaviouRal Activation): A Randomised Controlled Trial of Behavioural Activation versus Cognitive Behavioural Therapy

The COBRA trial will compare the cost and the outcome of the therapies in order to find out which one of the treatments will be most useful for the treatment of depression.

Project page

CASPER: Collaborative care and active surveillance for screen-positive elders with sub-clinical depression: a pilot study and definitive and randomised evaluation

The CASPER trial examined a treatment called Collaborative Care for older people with subthreshold (low severity) depression. We are currently carrying out an extended follow-up with participants from the CASPER Trial.

Funded by: National Institute for Health Research HTA.

CASPER site.

Y-SBNT: Family and Social Network Intervention for Young People who Misuse Alcohol and Drugs

Researchers from the Department of Health Sciences in collaboration with colleagues from the School of Psychology at the University of Birmingham aim to adapt an evidence-based family and social network intervention for substance-related problems to the youth context.  

Project page

OCTET: Obsessive Compulsive Treatment Efficiency Trial

In this study we will conduct a randomised trial looking at the clinical and cost effectiveness of two self-help treatments (Guided Self-Help and Computerised CBT) compared to a waiting list control for people with OCD.

Project page

CLAHRC ARiAS: Addiction Research in Acute Settings

The overall aim of the ARiAS research programme is to investigate methods of improving the physical and mental health of people with alcohol and/or illicit drug problems who are identified within an acute hospital setting.

Project page

ASSSIST: Autism Spectrum Social Stories In Schools Trial

The concept of social stories was created by Carol Gray in 2000. These are simple, short stories, usually with the autistic child in the starring role, often with helpful photographs and illustrations and a theme relating to a particular social difficulty or life-skill problem.

Project page

REEACT: the Randomised Evaluation of the Effectiveness and Acceptability of Computerised Therapy

REEACT is a randomised controlled trial which aims to compare two types of computerised cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) packages (one free-to-use and one commercial) to see if there are any additional benefits of offering this treatment to the care that people already receive from their GP.

Project page

AESOPS: the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of opportunistic screening and stepped care interventions for older harzardous alcohol users in primary care

This research study is looking at the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of opportunistic screening and stepped care interventions for older hazardous alcohol users in primary care.

Funded by: NIHR HTA‌

project page

Smoking cessation for people with severe mental illness: a pilot study and definitive randomised evaluation of a bespoke service (SCIMITAR)

This study will develop a 'bespoke smoking cessation' service targeted to meet the needs of those with serious mental health problems such as schizophrenia, and will test the clinical and cost effectiveness of this approach in a randomised controlled trial.

Project page

MCLASS: Muslim Communities Learning About Second-Hand Smoke

Muslim Communities Learning About Second-hand Smoke (MCLASS) is a cluster, randomised, controlled pilot trial of 'Smoke Free Homes' delivered in Islamic religious settings (mosques hosting communal prayers, study circles for women and Qur'an classes for children) with embedded preliminary health economic and qualitative analyses.

project page

ACT AD: Assertive Community Treatment in alcohol dependence

ACTAD is a randomised control trial to determine the effectiveness of ACT for the treatment of alcohol dependence compared with standard treatment.

Project page