Professional qualifications, accreditations and memberships

  • MD (Turkish)
  • MRCPsych
  • FRCPsych

Professional experience

After completing psychiatric training in Turkey, Dr Atakan moved to the UK with a research scholarship, where she obtained her membership degree from the Royal College of Psychiatrists.

From 1990 until 2003, for 13 years, she worked as a psychiatric intensive care consultant and from 2003 until 2007 was the lead consultant at the National Psychosis Unit at the Maudsley Hospital, London.

She is currently doing part-time private practice as well as researching the effects of cannabis on mental functioning.

Dr Atakan has extensive experience with treating and helping those with psychoses, depression, anxiety, PTSD, OCD and other forms of mental health problems. She is also known as an expert in treating treatment-resistant psychosis as well as helping those who have problematic cannabis use.

Personal statement

Dr Atakan approaches people as individuals in unique circumstances. She believes in working in a collaborative manner with patients and their carers.

She has particular expertise in diagnosing and treating schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, depression, OCD, PTSD and cannabis use related mental health problems.

She has been carrying out cannabis research at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience for some years and has numerous publications published in peer-reviewed journals.

Additional information about research, publications and interests

Media work (on cannabis related issues):

  • Cannabis Psychosis’ Channel 4 documentary, (One hour long) 16.12.2002 (Transmitted again in April 2003)
  • BBC World ‘Violence and Society’, following WHO report on violence, 3.10.2002
  • Regular media work on cannabis and mental health-related issues, including appearances on Newsnight – BBC 2, BBC One 6:30 news and Radio 4
  • Horizon BBC1 documentary on the effects of cannabis, transmitted on 3 February 2009
  • BBC Learning –transmitted in spring 2009

Website and social media