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Improving Services & Outcomes for People who Self Harm

This conference focuses on improving services and outcomes for people who self harm, and implementing and monitoring adherence to the NEW NICE Guideline: Self-harm: assessment, management and preventing recurrence which was published on 7th September 2022.

Follow the conference on Twitter #SelfHarm

The New NICE Guideline for Self-Harm

• ensuring a compassionate approach to self-harm

• involving family members and carers, reviewing whether the individual wants the family/carer involved

• what the new NICE guideline recommends


Dr Gemma Trainor

Dr Gemma Trainor

Reader in Mental Health Nursing, Salford University

Gemma is Associate Professor in Mental Health Nursing at the University of Salford. Previously she  held the post of Senior Lecturer in Mental Health Nursing at Liverpool John Moores University (2020-2023) having earlier spent over 3 years as a lecturer and researcher at Kings College, London (2016 -2020).

Clinically, she has over 30 years direct experience of working with young people and adults with complex mental health difficulties. Up to Summer 2016, Gemma was Nurse Consultant and clinical lead for a Tier4 CAMHS day service and outpatient service with GMW NHS Foundation Mental Health Trust in Manchester. Here she specialised in working with young people who self-harm.

She has also spent over 20 years as an active researcher. In 2001 she completed her PhD thesis, evaluating a group treatment for self harm which she co-designed. She has been a lead clinician of this promising treatment in 3 large multi-centre randomized controlled trials (Australia and UK) investigating outcomes, transferability and cost-effectiveness. She has published this research and other work in peer reviewed journals and books and has presented the findings at several national and international conferences.

Notably, Gemma is a co-editor and author of 3 chapters of a well received book “Helping Children and Young People who Self Harm -An introduction to self-harming and suicidal behaviours for health professionals”. She continues to actively publish with current interests in transgender issues, the impact of social media on young people’s mental health and suicide risk among the nursing profession.

In 2021 and 2022 she was chair of the RCN Children and Young People’s  Staying Healthy Forum which has over 4500 professional members.

Between 2019 and 2022, she was an invited member of the NICE Guideline Development Committee on the management, treatment and prevention of recurrence of self harm, representing mental health nursing interests for children and young people. The NICE Guideline was published in September 2022.


EXTENDED SESSION: Understanding self-harm in boys

• understanding self-harm and boys

• common causes and drivers of self-harm for boys

• how self-harm can manifest in boys and young men

• strategies for working with boys, and how these differ



Dr Nisha Balan

Dr Nisha Balan

Consultant Child and Adoslescent Psychiatrist CAMHS CRHT Team, Leicester Partnership NHS Trust, Patient Safety Group Member, RCPsych

Dr Nisha Balan works as Consultant Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist with the CAMHS Crisis Resolution Home Treatment (CRHT) Team within FYPCS directorate in Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust, Leicester, UK. She has been with the team from when the team went live in April 2017. Following qualification in MBBS in Kerala, India she moved to UK and completed training in psychiatry and then CAMHS to take up post as consultant psychiatrist in 2011. As a consultant psychiatrist she has worked in Community outpatient team and covered inpatient team for a brief period before taking up Consultant Psychiatrist post with CAMHS CRHT Team, LPT NHS Trust. She is also joint lead for Suicide Prevention Programme for FYPC in LPT NHS Trust. In addition, Dr Nisha Balan is a member of the Patient Safety Group at the Royal College of Psychiatrist, Regional CAMHS Specialty Representative and Wellbeing Champion for Royal College of Psychiatrists Trent Division. She has an interest in collaborative working to ensure patient centred safe, effective service provision within an environment where patients and staff feel respected and empowered. She believes that no two people are the same and every perspective matters. She became interested in RCPsych work when she was introduced to the role of Regional Specialty Rep for CAMHS. She was co-opted to the role of Trent Division Wellbeing Champion in Oct 2021. She hopes to do her best to inform psychiatrists and clinicians of what supports are available through the college; gather feedback from psychiatrists to inform College work and work with NHS Trusts and employers to promote patient safety and wellbeing strategies within work environment.

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