Lauren Cox started her academic career by initially studying for a BA (Hons) in Philosophy and Literature at The University of Liverpool. However, her course took a change after discovering her father had taken his own life whilst experiencing psychosis. This catalysed a yearning to improve NHS services for those people at risk of developing severe mental health problems.
Lauren went on to complete a BA (Hons) (1st class) in mental health nursing and worked on acute male inpatient wards in and around Merseyside. During this time, Lauren took a proactive role in implementing carer support for service users at risk of suicide and worked within secondary community mental health services. Lauren subsequently went on to complete a MSc in Cognitive behavioural therapy for complex cases at The University of Salford in order to improve people’s mental health with a keen focus on treating psychosis. During this time she published a paper on Using cognitive behaviour therapy techniques with people who hold delusional beliefs
Following her masters, Lauren worked in early intervention in psychosis services. During this time, she was tasked with developing a psychological pathway for those deemed as at-risk of developing psychosis in line with national guidelines. Implementing the pathway piqued Lauren’s interest in research due to gaps she noted via her clinical work. She and her colleague audited the service against NICE standards and found high levels of disengagement which she wanted to understand in order to improve people’s experiences and their recovery.
They published a paper An at-risk mental state service embedded within a UK Early Intervention team across two years of ser www.tandfonline.com and Lauren presented the findings at The Royal College of Psychiatrists Early Intervention forum which further shaped her current research project. During this forum, Lauren presented her and her service users experience of CBT for psychosis My Experience of EIT (and beyond) www.rcpsych.ac.uk due to a passion for involving every user at the centre of their care.
Lauren Cox then went on to publish A qualitative systematic review of Early Intervention in Psychosis service user perspectives regarding valued aspects of treatment with a focus on cognitive behavioural therapy www.cambridge.org which furthered her interests in supporting people in the at risk group. Lauren was asked to write a popular paper on the Use of individual formulation in mental health practice www.rcni.com, a theme underpinning Lauren’s current work.
Laurens continued family experience of psychosis means the core of her approach is service user involvement and developing services holistically; placing service users, their families and their carers at the forefront of their care. Her current research project seeks to improve NHS services for people at risk of developing psychosis. You can learn more about the study here hEARD