Pre-Conference Workshops

All Pre-Conference Workshops will be held on Tuesday 26 November. All workshops will provide valuable insights and discussions across a broad range of topics.

Places are strictly limited and are offered on a first come, first served basis. We recommend booking early to ensure you don’t miss out.

Please refer to the workshops below for their specific cost for attendance.

Workshop 1: Australian Rotary Health: Media and Presentation Training

Date: Tuesday, 26 November 2019
Time: 9:30am – 4:00pm
Max Participants: 20
Minimum Participants: 10
Venue/Room: Old Physics Building-G16, Jim Potter Room, University of Melbourne, Parkville Campus
Cost: $30pp (morning tea, lunch & afternoon tea provided)

Workshop details


1. Professor Rob Morrison, OAM, Flinders University of South Australia

2. Professor Jane Pirkis, University of Melbourne, Victoria

Australian Rotary Health will again hold a Media and Presentation Training Workshop. The first session, Media Training, will be run by scientist and long-time broadcaster, Professor Rob Morrison. It covers some of the essentials that researchers, especially those at the start of their careers, should be aware of when interacting with the media; an increasingly important aspect of every scientist’s work. The second session, Presentation Training, will be conducted by Professor Jane Pirkis and will primarily focus on approaches to presenting research to community groups (e.g., Rotary Clubs). However, the principles covered will apply equally well to presentations prepared for general scientific audiences. Both sessions will concentrate on translating theory into practice, with lots of active participation.


Workshop 2: Introduction to Economic Evaluation in Mental Health

Date: Tuesday, 26 November 2019
Time: 2:00pm – 5:30pm
Max Participants: 50
Minimum Participants: 10
Venue/Room: Deakin Downtown – Level 12 Tower 2 – 727 Collins Street, Melbourne 
Cost: $30pp (special price for SMHR Conference registrants, includes afternoon tea)

Workshop details

This Workshop is designed for those who want to incorporate a cost-effective analysis into a grant proposal or who want to gain a further understanding of the current methods of economic evaluation alongside clinical trials, with a particular focus on mental health. The workshop involves a series of modules that provide an overview of what is required to conduct a health economic evaluation alongside a trial. Each module is supplemented by practical exercises. This workshop will:

  • Explain important economic concepts, which underpin economic evaluation methods including opportunity costs, and discounting.
  • Introduce key methods of economic evaluation including cost-effectiveness analysis, cost-utility analysis, cost-benefit analysis and return on investment studies.
  • Describe the basic principles for measuring and valuing the cost of an intervention and its consequences.
  • Introduce the Quality-Adjusted Life Year (QALY) framework and the use of preference-based outcome measures, which underpin cost-utility analysis.
  • Give participants the necessary knowledge and confidence to read, understand and critically appraise a published economic evaluation in mental health.


Professor Catherine Mihalopoulos is an internationally recognised expert in the field of the economics of mental disorders and psychosocial care. She is currently Professor of Health Economics at Deakin University and Head and Chair of Deakin Health Economics. She has over 130 publications in this area (over 5000 citations) and has been a named investigator on grants, tenders and consultancies totalling over $60M dollars. She has a broad range of experience in mental health economics ranging from the conduct of economic evaluations alongside clinical trials, economic modelling, broad-based priority-setting projects which simultaneously compare multiple interventions and methodological research around outcome measurement for economics. She has been invited to sit on committees of national and international significance, including the Economics Sub-Committee of the Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee (PBAC) and sits on the Executive Committee of the Society for Mental Health Research.

Dr Mary Lou Chatterton is a Senior Research Fellow and Deputy Head of the Mental Health Economics Stream in Deakin Health Economics. She has over 20 years of experience incorporating economic evaluations into clinical trials and developing economic models for the pharmaceutical industry and collaborative academic research across several clinical areas including infectious diseases, neurology and mental health. Dr Chatterton’s current research focuses on the practical implementation and analysis of economic evaluations within clinical trials evaluating medications and psychological interventions to prevent and treat mental health conditions including bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, anxiety and depression.

Dr Lidia Engel is a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow at Deakin Health Economics. She has a great interest in methodological approaches when assessing the cost-effectiveness of different health care interventions. She specialised in the measurement and valuation of quality of life and informal care, as well as the economics of mental health, including loneliness. Lidia is a member of the EuroQol group and sits on the Advisory Group for the E-QALY project, led by Sheffield University in the UK, which aims to develop a new preference-based quality of life measure for use in economic evaluation. In her current role at Deakin Health Economics, Lidia is part of the Mental Health Stream and provides support with the design, conduct and analysis of economic evaluations alongside a number of clinical trials across a number of mental health conditions and age groups.

Mr Yong Yi Lee is a Research Fellow at Deakin Health Economics within Deakin University and an Honorary Fellow with affiliations at the School of Public Health and the Queensland Centre for Mental Health Research (QCMHR) within The University of Queensland. His research interests encompass the application of economic evaluation methods and modelling techniques to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of interventions for mental disorders and other non-communicable diseases (NCDs). Yong Yi is currently working on several projects involving trial-based economic evaluations for different mental health interventions and is currently acting as a consultant for the World Health Organization (WHO) to develop models evaluating the cost-effectiveness of mental health interventions for the prevention of suicide and depression as part of the WHO Global NCD Action Plan 2013-2020. Yong Yi has previously contributed to research as part of the ACE Prevention study, the Global Burden of Disease 2010 study and the NHMRC-funded Centre for Research Excellence in Mental Health Systems Improvement.


Dr Long Le is a Research Fellow at Deakin Health Economics, based at the Institute for Health Transformation, Deakin University. He is also an external scientific reviewer for Joanna Briggs Institute, University of Adelaide. He has extensive academic and research experience in trial-based economic evaluations and has a strong focus on modelling techniques to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of interventions for mental disorders. He has involved in several projects such as the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of online self-help to prevent mental health in young people (LINK trial); the cost-effectiveness of universal and indicated prevention for bullying at school (PAVe trial); the analysis of utility-based quality of life for mental disorders and the cost of illness study for mental disorders in adolescent and young people. Dr Le is an active member of the National Forum for Obesity and Eating Disorders. He is currently a member of the Editorial Board of Journal of Eating Disorders.


Workshop 3: Good Clinical Practice (GCP) Training

Date: Tuesday 26 November 2019
Time: 9:00am – 1:00pm
Max Participants: 40
Minimum Participants: 12
Venue/Room: Orygen, 35 Poplar Road, Parkville – Colonial Foundation Room LG.302
Cost: $48pp (includes morning tea)

Workshop details

ICH E6 GCP (R2) GCP Training for Investigator Site Personnel Course – workshop providing certificate of training completion (TransCelerate’s GCP Training Mutual Recognition Program) specifically for groups involved in investigator-initiated mental health studies as well as commercially sponsored studies. This workshop seeks to address specific GCP compliance issues encountered in investigator-initiated and mental health research. All persons involved in or interested in research are encouraged to attend.

Presenter: Dr Angela Scheppokat

Many institutional governance offices (e.g. Melbourne Health Office for Research) now require investigators on clinical trials to hold current good clinical practice (GCP) certification which meets the standards outlined as part of the TransCelerate Biopharma Inc. Mutual Recognition program. For the convenience of SMHR members, this workshop will provide an updated training program which includes the most recent International Council for Harmonisation (ICH) GCP revision and updated course requirements as outlined by TransCelerate.

There will be a test at the end of the workshop, and successful participants will be provided with certificates valid for three years and recognised by most external stakeholders.

This training is being run for groups involved in investigator-initiated mental health studies as well as commercially sponsored studies, and seeks to address specific GCP compliance issues encountered in investigator-initiated and mental health research. The trainer is Dr Angela Scheppokat, Sponsor Operations Manager at Orygen, The National Centre of Excellence in Youth Mental Health. While the main outcome of this session is the Investigator GCP certification, Angela actively encourages vigorous discussion during the training and would like you to use the workshop as a forum where you can openly discuss challenges and questions that researchers and their teams encounter, with the aim of identifying practical, workable solutions. Everyone involved in or interested in research is welcome to attend.


Workshop 4: Utilizing Genetic Techniques from Discovery Research to Clinical Application

Date: Tuesday 26 November 2019
Time: 1:00pm – 5:00pm
Max Participants: 50
Minimum Participants: 10
Venue/Room: Monash Health Translation Precinct, Seminar rooms 1 and 2
Cost: $30pp (includes afternoon tea and canapés and drinks at the networking reception)

Workshop details

This workshop is designed to showcase the value in using genetic tools to understand the biology of many psychiatric disorders. Several different genetic techniques will be described by our expert speakers, as well as our Monash Health Translation Precinct genomics specialists. In addition, participants will be guided through the MHTP genomics facility, and will be given detailed information on how to obtain genetic information, from sample collection, preparation, testing and bioinformatics analysis.

Convenor: Professor Jayashri Kulkarni


Professor Elizabeth Thomas, Scripps Institute, USA – “Using Peripheral Fluids for Epigenetic Biomarker Research in Psychiatric Disorders”
Professor Mark Bellgrove, Monash University – “Systems Neuroscience Approaches to Psychiatric Disorders: ADHD”
Professor Brian Dean, Florey Institute for Neuroscience and Mental Health – “Region-specific Changes in Cortical Gene Expression Differentiated Between Schizophrenia, Major Depression and Bipolar Disorders: A Potential Window to Disease Specific Pathophysiologies”
Professor Melissa Green, University of NSW – “Psychiatric Genetics: Environment Matters”
Dr Dale Watkins, Bioinformatics, Qiagen, “Understanding Complex ‘Omics Data Using Pathway Analysis and Other Bioinformatics Tools”

Program of events:

1pm – Welcome introduction by Professor Kulkarni
1:15pm – Presentation by MHTP Facility Manager, Vivian Vasic and Genomics Facility Manager, Trevor Wilson
1:30pm – Elizabeth Thomas
2:00pm – Mark Bellgrove
2:30pm – Tea / Coffee break + Guided tours of the MHTP facility in groups of 10
3:00pm – Melissa Green
3:30pm – Brian Dean
4:00pm – Dale Watkins
4:30pm – Tea / Coffee break + Guided tours of the MHTP facility
5:00-6:00pm – Networking event