Louise Howard is Professor of Women’s Mental Health, King’s College London. Howard’s research includes medication in pregnancy, violence and health and the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of perinatal mental health services. She is an Honorary Consultant Perinatal Psychiatrist with South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust.
Howard is Chair of the NICE National Collaborating Centre for Mental Health Guideline Development Group on Antenatal and Postnatal Mental Health and a member of the International Editorial Board of the British Journal of Psychiatry.
Louise studied medicine at University College London and completed an intercalated BSc in Psychology before finishing her undergraduate studies in 1988. She trained in general medicine in Bloomsbury obtaining the Membership of the Royal College of Physicians in 1991. After completing her general psychiatric training and obtaining the MRCPsych she obtained a Wellcome Trust Health Services Research Training Fellowship in perinatal psychiatry.
She was appointed Senior Lecturer in 2004, promoted to a Reader in Women’s Mental Health in 2008 and to Professor in Women’s Mental Health in 2010. Her research programmes focus on maternal mental health, and violence and health.
She has won a number of prizes for her research including the Association of European Psychiatrists Research Prize, the Institute of Psychiatry Dennis Hill Prize, the Royal College of Psychiatrists Bronze Medal research prize and most recently in 2014 the International Marce Society’s Marce Medal for excellence in perinatal mental health research. Louise was also awarded an NIHR Research Professorship for 2013-18.
She has recently been Chair of the National Institute for Clinical Excellence Guideline Development Group (update) on Antenatal and Postnatal Mental Health (2014), and was a member of the NICE/SCIE and WHO guidance development groups on preventing and reducing domestic violence (2013). In 2014 she edited a commissioned series on perinatal mental health for the Lancet. She also authored chapters of recent CMO annual reports (perinatal mental health 2014; violence and mental health 2013). She was appointed National Clinical Advisor NHSE Improving Access and Waiting Times Perinatal Programme 2015-2016 and was a Specialist Committee member for the Quality Standards Committee NICE CG192 (2015). She is currently a NICE Expert Adviser for the Centre for Clinical Practice (2016-8) and a member of the government Women’s Mental Health Taskforce 2017.