Sally Ohlsen

Sally Ohlsen SFHEA, MSc, BA

Senior Lecturer


I am senior lecturer in occupational therapy. I enjoy teaching about developing research capacity within clinical practice and mental health inpatient and community based interventions.

I have researched and published on healthcare workforce retention and wellbeing as well as how comorbid is managed in community setting through social prescribing.  I also have research interests in student mental health and wellbeing.


I joined Sheffield Hallam University in 2023. Prior to this I was a researcher and university teacher at the University Sheffield in the School of Health and Related Research (ScHARR). In this posted I was deputy director of a clinical research masters programme and taught into several other masters in public health.  My clinical background is in a range of mental health settings. My previous OT role was a senior occupational therapist in East London Foundation NHS trust.  I obtained my MSc in occupational therapy in 2015 and I am currently working towards a PhD by publication.


College of Health, Wellbeing and Life Sciences

Subject area:

Long term mental health and occupation; early intervention in mental health, community approaches to health through occupational engagements; social prescribing; working with comorbidities; anxiety management and mindfulness, resilience training, hearing voices.

All things research method - purpose, processes and practicalities of conducting researching clinical settings. 


Current Research projects (Honorary contract University of Sheffield)

Health Foundation grant Health care assistant retention.  (co applicant. £100,000)
Health Foundation grant ROMHS Retention of the mental health staff workforce. (Co applicant £500,000 and extension £70,000)

Link 1 - Workforce retention


Long, J; Ohlsen, S; Senek, M; Booth, A; Weich, S; Wood, E (2023) A realist synthesis of factors affecting retention of staff in UK adult mental health services. British Medical Journal

Wood, E; Ohlsen, S; Fenton, SJ; Connell, J; Weich,S (2022) Social Prescribing for people with complex needs: A realist evaluation BMC Family Practice

Ohlsen S, Sanders T, Connell J & Wood E (2021) Integrating mental health care into home‐based nursing services : a qualitative study utilising normalisation process theory. Journal of Clinical Nursing.

Adams R, Ohlsen S & Wood E (2020) Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) for the treatment of psychosis: a systematic review. European Journal of Psychotraumatology, 11(1).

Tom R, Saxon D, Wood E, Hulin J, Soady J, Ohlsen S & Mitchell C (2018) The effect of comorbid depression on the use of unscheduled hospital care by people with a long term condition: A retrospective observational study. Journal of Affective Disorders, 227, 366-371.

Wood EF, Ohlsen S, Thompson J, Hulin J & Knowles L (2017) The feasibility of brief dog assisted therapy on university students stress levels: The PAwS study.. Journal of Mental Health.

Wood EF, Ohlsen S & Ricketts T (2017) What are the barriers and facilitators to implementing Collaborative Care for depression? A systematic review. Journal of Affective Disorders, 214, 26-43.

Saxon D, Ashley K, Bishop-Edwards L, Connell J, Harrison P, Ohlsen S, Hardy GE, Kellett S, Mukuria C, Mank T , Bower P et al (2017) A pragmatic randomised controlled trial assessing the non-inferiority of counselling for depression versus cognitive-behaviour therapy for patients in primary care meeting a diagnosis of moderate or severe depression (PRaCTICED): Study protocol for a randomised controlled trial.. Trials, 18(1), 93-93.

Ohlsen S, Ashley K, Saxon D & Barkham M (2016) Putting PRaCTICED into practice. Therapy Today.

Wood E, Ohlsen S, Fenton S-J, Connell J & Weich S () Social Prescribing for people with complex needs: A realist evaluation. BMC Family Practice.

Barkham M, Saxon D, Hardy GE, Bradburn M, Galloway D, Wickramasekera N, Keetharuth AD, Bower P, King M, Elliott R , Gabriel L et al () Clinical and cost-effectiveness of person-centred experiential therapy vs. cognitive behavioural therapy for moderate and severe depression delivered in the English Improving Access to Psychological Therapies national programme: A pragmatic randomised non- inferiority trial [PRaCTICED]. The Lancet Psychiatry.

Conference proceedings papers

Ohlsen, S (2023) Exploring inclusivity in Higher education – Post graduate perspective. 3rd UKCGE Conference on Postgraduate Taught Education,  The University of Nottingham on 25th April 2023.

Ohlsen, S; Jorden, H and Blackmore, C (2023) Student success via increased student engagement (3 research projects) Elevate Teaching and Learning Conference university of Sheffield. 18th April 2023

Ohlsen, S; Dr J.Long, E. Lumley, Prof R.Finn Dr E.Wood (2022)Understanding factors affecting mental health workforce retention using organisational case

Ricketts T, Wood E, Soady J, Saxon D, Hulin J, Ohlsen S & Mitchell C (2017) What is the effect of co-morbid depression on the use of unscheduled hospital care by people with a long term condition?. Society For Academic Primary Care National Conference Programme, 12 July 2017 - 14 July 2017.

Ohlsen S, Paul C & Williamson K (2016) Towards totally smoke-free mental health services: Using a staff survey to support regional implementation. UKNSCC conference 2016., 9 June 2016 - 10 June 2016.

Other activities


Cancel event

Are you sure you want to cancel your place on Saturday 12 November?