Lola Kola, PhD

Former Global Mental Health Scholar

Lola Kola, PhD, is a Senior Research Fellow at the WHO Collaborating Centre for Research and Training in Mental Health, Neurosciences and Drug and Alcohol Abuse, Department of Psychiatry, College of Medicine University of Ibadan, Nigeria. She is also an Adjunct Associate Professor in the Department of Sociology and Psychology, Faculty of Social Sciences at Lead City University, Ibadan. Lola is a medical sociologist with a background training in social work, and she has prior acquired clinical knowledge from experience working with patients with mental illness in a teaching hospital setting. Lola is committed to mental health research in low-and-middle-income counties and has been engaged in the field for over a decade. Her research experience consists of 3 separate but overlapping areas which form the foundation of her global mental health career: epidemiological studies, treatment gap and mental health service scale-up, and task sharing through the World Health Organization’s Mental Health GAP Action Plan.

She serves as a mental health consultant for the World Health Organization Nigeria Office, and she also was the coordinator on formative studies for the ICD-10 revision. She has extensive familiarity with the opportunities and challenges of researching in LMIC settings and has conducted most of her work in primary care. She served as hub administrator on National Institute of Mental Health-funded international collaborative research on mental health in the sub-Saharan African countries of Nigeria, Ghana, Liberia, Kenya, and South Africa.

Lola’s current research priority is in the development and evaluation of technology-based approaches to study, assess, and treat mental health disorders. She is an affiliate team member of mHealth for mental health program of the University of Washington (UW) Seattle. Lola was awarded the position of an NIH Emerging Global Leader in 2019 for a five-year highly innovative mHealth initiative on “Responding to the Challenges of Adolescent Perinatal Depression with Patient-Centered Mobile Health” in primary care.

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