Dr Daniela Fuhr

Dipl-Psych MSc DrPH

Assistant Professor
in Mental Health Systems


15-17 Tavistock Place
United Kingdom

0044 20 7958 8138

My research addresses the treatment gap for common mental disorders, and focuses on the design and evaluation of mental health programmes for disadvantaged and vulnerable populations. I am particularly interested in low intensity interventions and task-sharing in low and middle-income countries. One important aspect of my work is to strengthen mental health systems in resource constrained settings, and to seek ways to overcome health system challenges to improve mental health outcomes. I am a mixed methods researcher, and have worked on both experimental and observational study designs. Before joining LSHTM, I worked at the WHO Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse in Geneva for several years. 

I am Associate Editor of the BMC journal Conflict and Health.


Faculty of Public Health and Policy
Department of Health Services Research and Policy


Centre for Global Chronic Conditions
Global Mental Health
Health in Humanitarian Crises Centre


I teach on the MSc in Global Mental Health, and organise the core module “Design and Evaluation of Mental Health Programmes”. The course seeks to provide students with the necessary skills and knowledge to develop and evaluate innovative mental health interventions which facilitate access to care, and make best use of the health system resources which are available in a setting. The course focuses on formative research and pilot studies and employs problem-based learning; examples of different mental health programmes from low and middle-income countries are presented in class. I also tutor on the MSc in Global Mental Health, and take on research degree students with an interest in Global Mental Health, and mental health implementation research. I am also Deputy Chair of the Global Mental Health exam board.


I work on the STRENGHTS (Syrian Refugees Mental Health Care Systems) project which is funded by the European Commission Horizon 2020 scheme. STRENGHTS focuses on the mental health needs of Syrian refugees, and seeks to provide a  framework  for  scaling-up  the  delivery  and  uptake  of  Problem Management+ (PM+) in countries neighbouring Syria (Turkey, Lebanon, Egypt, Jordan) and major European host countries (Germany, the Netherlands, Sweden, Switzerland). PM+ is a transdiagnostic counselling intervention for PTSD, depression and anxiety disorders which has been developed by WHO. To inform the implementation of PM+, we are employing rapid appraisal methodology to analyse the responsiveness of the health system in addressing the mental health needs of Syrian refugees in the study countries, and are conducting cross-sectional population-level surveys and in-depth qualitative research to explore access to mental health care. We are also conducting Theory of Change workshops to prepare for the scaling up phase of the project.

I am also PI on a Wellcome funded seed grant which seeks to develop a community-based intervention for alcohol use disorders in Ukraine. Our population of interest focuses on the general population, including internally displaced people.

Previously, I worked on maternal depression in India and Pakistan; we have developed a cost-effective intervention for mothers with depression which is based on behavioural activation and ready to be implemented at scale in low and middle-income countries.   

Research Area
Complex interventions
Health services research
Health systems
Global Health
Mixed methods
Implementation research
Randomised controlled trials
Social Sciences
Disease and Health Conditions
Mental health
Arab World
Europe & Central Asia (all income levels)
Middle East & North Africa (all income levels)
South Asia

Selected Publications

Effectiveness of the Thinking Healthy Programme for perinatal depression delivered through peers: pooled analysis of two randomized controlled trials in India and Pakistan
Vanobberghen F; Weiss HA; Fuhr DC; Sikander S; Afonso E; Ahmad I; Atif N; Bibi A; Bibi T; Bilal S
Journal of Affective Disorders
Delivering the Thinking Healthy Programme for perinatal depression through peers: an individually randomised controlled trial in India.
Fuhr DC; Weobong B; Lazarus A; Vanobberghen F; Weiss HA; Singla DR; Tabana H; Afonso E; De Sa A; D'Souza E
Lancet Psychiatry
Scaling up mental health interventions in conflict zones.
Roberts B; Fuhr DC
The Lancet Public Health
Treatment gap and mental health service use among Syrian refugees in Sultanbeyli, Istanbul: a cross-sectional survey.
Fuhr DC; Acarturk C; McGrath M; Ilkkursun Z; Sondorp E; Sijbrandij M; Ventevogel P; Cuijpers P; McKee M; Roberts B
Epidemiology and psychiatric sciences
Mental health care utilisation and access among refugees and asylum seekers in Europe: A systematic review.
Satinsky E; Fuhr DC; Woodward A; Sondorp E; Roberts B
Health Policy
Effectiveness of peer-delivered interventions for severe mental illness and depression on clinical and psychosocial outcomes: a systematic review and meta-analysis.
Fuhr DC; Salisbury TT; De Silva MJ; Atif N; van Ginneken N; Rahman A; Patel V
Social psychiatry and psychiatric epidemiology
Contribution of suicide and injuries to pregnancy-related mortality in low-income and middle-income countries: a systematic review and meta-analysis
Fuhr DC; Calvert C; Ronsmans C; Chandra PS; Sikander S; de Silva MJ; Patel V
The lancet Psychiatry
Alcohol other psychoactive substances in Africa and the Americas: Results from the WHO Global School-based Student Health Survey
Fuhr DC; Fleischmann A; Riley L; Kann L; Poznyak VB
Journal of Substance Use
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