Professor Anne Whittaker

Professor of Nursing

NMAHP NMAHP Research Unit, Faculty of Health Sciences and Sport Pathfoot Building, University of Stirling, Stirling, Scotland, FK9 4NF, UK.

Professor Anne Whittaker

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About me

About me

I am Professor of Nursing and a clinical academic in applied substance use and mental health research, based in the Nursing, Midwifery and Allied Health Professions (NMAHP) Research Unit, which is part of the Faculty of Health Sciences and Sport. The NMAHP Research Unit is one of six research units in Scotland funded by the Chief Scientist Office (CSO), in the Scottish Government Health Directorate.

I lead a programme of applied health and social care research related to the treatment and care of individuals and families affected by substance use and I am academic lead for the ‘Families’ Research Theme in the Drugs Research Network for Scotland (DRNS).

My clinical background includes senior nursing and managerial posts in addictions, blood borne viruses, mental health and learning disabilities services within the National Health Service (NHS) and Local Authority Social Services. I was born and brought up in Australia, before moving to London and then Edinburgh to live and work 35 years ago. I am an NMC registered nurse in Mental Health (RMN) and Learning Disabilities (RNLD) and I have further education and training in psychology and psychotherapy.

My primary research interests include interdisciplinary mixed methods research that aims to advance policy, service delivery and professional practice related to the care of parents and pregnant women who use substances and affected children and family members, with a focus on improving outcomes, reducing inequalities and promoting health and social justice.

I serve on numerous committees, including the CORRA Foundation Partnership Drugs Initiative (PDI), the Drugs Research Network for Scotland (DRNS) and the NICR ethics panel for the University of Stirling. I am a member of several research networks, including the Addiction in the Family International Network (AFINet). I regularly peer review journal paper submissions and research grant applications for research funders such as NIHR, MRC and the ESRC and I am a member of the HIPS grant review committee for the Chief Scientist Office (Scotland).

I teach on the MRes in Health Research programme at the University of Stirling and I supervise PhD, Clinical Doctorate and MRes dissertation students.

Other Academic Activities

Drugs Research Network for Scotland (DRNS)
Scottish Government

https://drns.ac.uk/
Steering Committee member and Academic Lead for the 'Families' research theme.


Research (4)

FUNDED RESEARCH PROJECTS:

Title: Governing parental opioid use: a relational ethnography. PI: Professor Anne Whittaker Funder: Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) Dates: 1 January 2020 - 30 April 2023.

Title: Improving Outcomes for Children and Families affected by Paternal Substance Misuse: A Feasibility Study of the Parents Under Pressure (PuP) Programme for Fathers. PI: Professor Anne Whittaker Funder: NIHR Public Health Research programme. Dates: 1 April 2017- 31 December 2020.

Title: Assessing the Impact of Minimum Unit Pricing on Homeless and Street Drinkers: A qualitative study. PI: Professor Lawrie Elliott, Glasgow Caledonian University Co-investigator: Professor Anne Whittaker Funder: Chief Scientist Office (CSO) Dates: 1 April 2019 - 31 August 2021.

Title: Understanding the role and potential of Primary Care in the prevention of drug deaths post COVID-19 PI: Professor Anne Whittaker and Dr Aileen O'Gorman (UWS) Funder: Scottish Government Drug Deaths Task Force Dates: 1 Feb 2021 - 31 March 2022.

Title: The development of a virtual cohort of children born to opioid dependent mothers in Scotland PI: Dr Louise Marryat, University of Edinburgh. Co-investigator: Professor Anne Whittaker Funder: Chief Scientist Office (CSO) Dates: Oct 2020- March 2021.

Title: Drink Wise Age Well Evaluation PI: Professor Sarah Wadd (University of Bedfordshire) Collaborator: Anne Whittaker Funder: Big Lottery Dates: 2015-2020.

Title: Families and substance use treatment: Creating a learning alliance. PI: Dr Amy Salmon, University of British Columbia Co-investigator: Professor Anne Whittaker Funder: Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research (Canada), Convening & Collaborating (C2) award Dates: April 2018- March 2019.

Title: Behavioural Couples Therapy (BCT) as an adjunct to opioid substitution therapy for drug dependent parents: A feasibility study. PI: Anne Whittaker Funder: Chief Scientist Office (CSO) Dates: March 2016- March 2018.

Title: Service user and service provider accounts of managing the risks and realities of Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome: an exploratory study in Lothian. PI: Anne Whittaker Funder: Edinburgh and Lothians Health Foundation (ELHF) Dates: Sept 2014-Sept 2015.

Title: An exploratory study of parenting and parenting support during the antenatal and postnatal period in opiate-dependent adults in Lothian: Service user and service provider perspectives. PI: Anne Whittaker Funder: Health Services Research Unit (HSRU) Dates: Sept 2011-Feb 2014.

Title: Young people with intellectual disability and those from ethnic minority backgrounds: views and experiences with the Human Papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine. PI: Anne Whittaker Funder: The Carnegie Trust for Scotland Dates: March 2015- Feb 2016.

Projects

Governing parental opioid use: a relational ethnography
PI: Professor Anne Whittaker
Funded by: Economic and Social Research Council

Assessing the impact of Minimum Unit Pricing on Homeless and Street Drinkers: A qualitative study
PI: Professor Anne Whittaker
Funded by: Chief Scientist Office

Improving outcomes for children and families affected by paternal substance misuse: A feasibility study of the parents under pressure programme for fathers
PI: Professor Anne Whittaker
Funded by: National Institute for Health Research

The development of a virtual cohort of children born to opioid dependent mothers in Scotland
PI: Professor Anne Whittaker
Funded by: Chief Scientist Office

Outputs (24)

Outputs

Research Report

Elliott L, Emslie C, Dimova E, Whiteford M, O’Brien R, Strachan H, Johnsen S, Rush R, Smith I, Stockwell T & Whittaker A (2022) Minimum Unit Pricing: Qualitative Study of the Experiences of Homeless Drinkers, Street Drinkers and Service Providers. Chief Scientist Office. Research Project Briefing. Edinburgh. https://www.cso.scot.nhs.uk/wp-content/uploads/HIPS1843-1.pdf

Article

Molina G & Whittaker A (2022) Treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder and substance use disorder in adults with a history of adverse childhood experiences: A systematic review of psychological interventions. Drug and Alcohol Dependence Reports, 2, Art. No.: 100028. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.dadr.2022.100028

Article

Whittaker A, Elliott L, Taylor J, Dawe S, Harnett P, Stoddart A, Littlewood P, Robertson R, Farquharson B & Strachan H (2022) The Parents under Pressure parenting programme for families with fathers receiving treatment for opioid dependency: the PuP4Dads feasibility study. Public Health Research, 10 (3), pp. 1-153. https://doi.org/10.3310/YOWK7214

Article

Wilson F, Adnum L, Whittaker A, Elliott L, Wadd S, Madoc-Jones I, McCAnn M, Dutton M, Seddon J & Close C (2021) Factors influencing routine cognitive impairment screening in older at-risk drinkers: Findings from a qualitative study in the United Kingdom. Health and Social Care in the Community, 29 (2), pp. 344-352. https://doi.org/10.1111/hsc.13093

Article

Keely A, Cunningham-Burley S, Elliott L, Sandall J & Whittaker A (2017) "If she wants to eat…and eat and eat…fine! It's gonna feed the baby": Pregnant women and partners' perceptions and experiences of pregnancy with a BMI >40 kg/m 2. Midwifery, 49, pp. 87-94. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.midw.2016.09.016

Meeting Abstract

Carnegie E, Whittaker A, Gray Brunton C, Hanif N, Harding S, Hilton S, Hogg R, Kennedy C, Pollock K & Pow J (2016) Cultural reflections on the Scottish HPV vaccination programme. 9th European Public Health Conference, Vienna. European Journal of Public Health, 26 (Supplement 1). https://doi.org/10.1093/eurpub/ckw169.049

Commentary

Whittaker A (2015) Guidelines for the Identification and Management of Substance Use and Substance Use Disorders in Pregnancy (Critique). Commentary on: Guidelines for the Identification and Management of Substance Use and Substance Use Disorders in Pregnancy By World Health Organization Geneva, Switzerland: WHO Press, 2014 ISBN: 9789241548731, 224 pp. Available free online http://www.who.int/substance_abuse/publications/pregnancy_guidelines/en/. Drug and Alcohol Review, 34 (3), pp. 340-341. https://doi.org/10.1111/dar.12212

Teaching

Teaching

My teaching includes the ‘Research Ethics and Governance’ module on the MRes in Health Research programme at the University of Stirling.

I supervise and examine PhD, Clinical Doctorate and MRes dissertation students.