Ms Sarah Hiles
(BPsych (Hons), Research Manager, Suicide Prevention Unit / Consultation Liaison Psychiatry )

DepartmentConsultation Liaison Psychiatry
Research AreasHealth Services Research, Population Health, Mental Health
Research TopicsSuicide and Self-Harm, Depression and Anxiety
Research TypesSurvey / Observational Research, Dissemination / Implementation

Ms Sarah Hiles has been conducting research for the Suicide Prevention Unit in the Consultation Liaison Psychiatry Department at Calvary Mater Newcastle since 2011.This role is supported by the Hunter New England Mental Health Service and Burdekin funding for Suicide Prevention. In this role, her main research interest is to investigate which factors increase the risk of suicide attempts and deliberate self-harm.

Sarah is also completing a PhD at the University of Newcastle looking at the relationship between depression, cardiovascular disease and levels of inflammatory markers in the blood.

More information about Ms Hiles' academic achievements may be found here:


Getting to know you

When did you start doing research?

My first research role was completing a Summer Scholarship in 2007 in the Laboratory of Neuroimmunology at the University of Newcastle, just before starting honours.

What research projects are you currently working on?

I will soon submit my PhD at the University of Newcastle which examines the relationship between depression, cardiovascular disease and markers in inflammation in the blood. After this is done, I will be working more intensively in my role as Research Manager for Suicide Prevention projects at the CMN. In this role, I have been working with CMN and international researchers to examine which factors increase the risk of repeated hospital presentations for suicide attempt and deliberate self-harm. In one study, we are comparing rates of deliberate self-harm here in Newcastle and in Oxford, UK.

What research achievement are you most proud of?

My greatest achievement so far has been my recent PhD Student Travel Award from the Hunter Medical Research Institute. It was very exciting to receive this award, and it will allow me to travel to a conference in Stockholm in June 2013.

What inspires you?

Meeting people, talking about my research and hearing about how the research that I do is relevant in their lives. I also enjoy talking to people who aren't researchers and have excellent ideas about the type of things they would like investigated. 

What did you do before coming to work at Calvary Mater Newcastle?

I have been working on my PhD at the University of Newcastle since 2009.

What has helped you the most in your research at Calvary Mater Newcastle?

All my research and statistics training in my undergraduate degree and my PhD.

Who are your main collaborators at Calvary Mater Newcastle?

Greg Carter, Ian Whyte and Terry Lewin.

What did you do before you became a researcher?

While I was doing my undergraduate degree in Psychology, I was a sales assistant in the Gallery and Ginger Beer shop at Campbell's Store in Morpeth.

What made you decide to do research?

It seemed fun to have a job where you can keep learning new things and ask questions every day.

What was your first / worst / best / strangest / memorable /etc job in research?

One of my best jobs in research has been conducting interviews where I had the chance to speak to the participants about their lives. It helped me get a sense of how all the pieces fit together.

What do you do to relax?

Cook, ride my bike and escape into stories.

What is the craziest thing you have ever had to do "in the name of research"?

The craziest thing I have done in research was my honours: waking up, going to the lab at Uni to set up my experiments, driving to Morpeth for a short shift at work, driving back to Uni to finish my experiments, then home to write Uni assignments! It sure drove me crazy!


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