Mani Viswasam,Dr Brakoulias, Vicki Riley and A/Prof. Starcevic

A/P Vladan Starcevic


Assoc.Prof. Vladan Starcevic



Vladan Starcevic has had medical education, psychiatric training and clinical, teaching and research experience and career in the former Yugoslavia, United States and Australia. He is currently Associate Professor at Sydney Medical School, Consultant Psychiatrist and Head of the Academic Department of Psychiatry at Nepean Hospital. He is also a Visiting Professor at the University of Belgrade and University of Novi Sad.

Dr Starcevic’s main professional and research interests include psychopathology, psychopharmacology and psychotherapy of anxiety, mood, somatoform, and personality disorders, combined pharmacotherapy and psychotherapy, and psychiatric classifications. He has authored or co-authored more than 150 book chapters and articles in various international journals. He has co-edited a book Hypochondriasis: Modern Perspectives on an Ancient Malady, published in 2001, and is the author of three other books on various aspects of anxiety disorders. His last book, Anxiety Disorders in Adults: A Clinical Guide was published by Oxford University Press in 2005. He has lectured widely and organised symposia and workshops at psychiatric conferences around the world.

Dr Starcevic’s research activities occur mainly through the Nepean Anxiety Disorders Clinic. His current projects involve studies of the cognitive styles in various anxiety disorders, health anxiety in panic disorder, effectiveness of psychological and pharmacological approaches to panic disorder, validity of the symptom subtypes of obsessive-compulsive disorder, the novel concept of dysphoria, and psychopathology of excessive use of video games.

Dr Starcevic serves on the panel for the World Federation of Societies of Biological Psychiatry Task Force on Treatment Guidelines for Anxiety, Obsessive-Compulsive and Posttraumatic Stress Disorders. He has also been an adviser for Anxiety Disorders Measures in the Handbook of Psychiatric Measures, published by the American Psychiatric Association. He is a member of the editorial boards of several professional journals and has been a manuscript reviewer for 20 journals.


Phone: +61 2 47342585
Fax: +61 2 47343343

Address: Department of Psychiatry
Nepean Hospital, Level 5 South Block
PO Box 63, Penrith NSW 2751 Australia

Interview in the Sydney Morning Herald featuring Associate Professor Vladan Starcevic

"Do screens make psychotic adults?"

Dr.Vlasios (Bill) Brakoulias


Dr.Vlasios (Bill) Brakoulias

MBBS (Hons), MPsychiatry,PhD,Cert.Psychotherapies FRANZCP


Dr Vlasios (Bill) Brakoulias is a senior staff specialist Psychiatrist working in the acute Psychiatric unit of Nepean Hospital and a conjoint senior lecturer with the Nepean Clinical School. His key research interests are obsessive-compulsive disorder, delusional disorders and aberrations of belief. Dr Brakoulias is the chief investigator of the Nepean OCD Study. This study has assessed and followed up almost 200 patients. He is also interested in the role of carers in mental health and psychotherapy. He is a fellow of the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists (FRANZCP) and has completed advanced training in the psychotherapies. In 2012, Dr Brakoulias was awarded his PhD for his research assessing symptom based subtypes in obsessive-compulsive disorder.

Dr Vlasios Brakoulias has been awarded his degree of Doctor of Philosophy entitled "Symptom-based subtypes of obsessive-compulsive disorder"
Bill's PhD Thesis

Dr Brakoulias appointed the new editor of Australasian Psychiatry

Dr Bill Brakoulias has been appointed the editor of Australasian Psychiatry which is a publication of the Royal Australian & New Zealand College of Psychiatrists (see attached extract from the college) which is well deserved and a prestigious appointment.

Read More :
RANZCP Announcement 24Sep2013

Research Interests

1. The Nepean OCD Study – a longitudinal assessment of the characteristics of OCD.
2. Validation of the Nepean Belief Scale (NBS).
3. Distinguishing beliefs in OCD and schizophrenia.
4. Validation of the Nepean Dysphoria Scale.
5. GP’s and the management of anxiety/ depression study.
6. Parkinsons disease and impulse control disorders.
7. Sedative-hypnotic agents in the hospital setting.
8. Cognitions regarding auditory hallucinations.
9. Social cognition in borderline personality disorder.
10. Anxiety sensitivity and self-harm.
11. Psychological approaches to the treatment of treatment-resistant delusions.

Teaching Responsibilities

1. Coordinator of written examinations for the discipline of psychiatry at the University of Sydney.
2. Coordinator of the Psychological and Addiction Medicine rotation of the Sydney University Graduate Medical Program at the Nepean Clinical School.


Phone: +61 2 47342585
Fax: +61 2 47343343

Address: Department of Psychiatry
Nepean Hospital, Level 5 South Block

Kirupamani (Mani) Viswasam - Psychologist / Research Assistant


Mani Viswasam

B.Soc.Sc.(Psychology), M.Hlth.Sc. (Child & Adol),MAPS

Mani's role entails assisting with various research projects, clinical trials and related issues within the Department of Psychiatry.
Mani also collaborates with the Department of Perinatal Ultrasound for the Maternal Fetal Bonding Study.
She is currently a PhD student with the Sydney Medical School Nepean,doing a project on ‘The prevalence and trajectory of anxiety disorders during pregnancy’


Phone: +61 2 47342581
Fax: +61 2 47 343343.

Address: Department of Psychiatry
Nepean Hospital, Level 5 South Block
PO Box 63, Penrith NSW 2751 Australia


Research activities in the Department revolve around the psychopathology, psychopharmacology and psychotherapy of anxiety disorders, mood disorders, somatoform disorders and personality disorders. Current and future projects involve studies of the following:

  • Psychopathology, co-occurrence, cognitive styles and longitudinal course of various anxiety disorders
  • Effectiveness of psychological strategies and combined pharmacotherapy and cognitive-behaviour therapy for treating anxiety disorders
  • Relationships between health anxiety, somatization, anxiety disorders, personality disorders and other psychiatric disorders
  • OCD Study: The Department of Psychiatry at Nepean Hospital has commenced a large and comprehensive study of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). In this study participants are asked to attend a structured interview and complete several questionnaires that aim to assess their symptoms comprehensively and to obtain data that aims to answer several key research questions in the field of OCD. Some of the assessment is repeated at 6 months, 12 months and 2 years. The key question that the study wishes to answer is whether patients with different symptoms of OCD (eg. people that repetitively hand wash compared to people that repeatedly check) also have other factors that differentiate them from other patients with OCD. We will also be able to assess how these factors respond to treatment and how they change over time. If you are interested in taking part in this study please call Mrs Vicki Riley on the telephone number +61 2 47342585 .