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Raj Persaud

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Prof. Rajendra (Raj) Persaud (born 13 May, 1963 in Reading, Berkshire) is a British consultant psychiatrist, broadcaster, and author of popular books about psychiatry. He is a well known for his contribution to the public awareness of psychiatric and mental health issues.

He pronounces his surname "per-SAWED" (IPA: /pəˈsɔːd/). He is married to an eye surgeon, and has a son and a daughter.

Academic careerEdit

Persaud was educated at the Haberdashers' Aske's Boys School and at University College London. As well as his medical degree, he has a first class honours degree in Psychology (1984), an MSc in statistics, and a degree in the history of medicine.

He is a consultant psychiatrist at the South London and Maudsley NHS Trust and Gresham Professor for Public Understanding of Psychiatry. In 2002 he was voted one of the top ten psychiatrists in the UK by a survey of the Institute of Psychiatry and the Royal College of Psychiatrists, published in the Independent on Sunday newspaper.

Media careerEdit

Raj Persaud is a prolific broadcaster and journalist, and presented the BBC Radio 4 psychology and psychiatry programme All in the Mind until his resignation in April 2006 (see "criticisms" below). He also is presenter for Travels of the Mind for BBC World Service. He frequently appears on radio and TV programmes, as either interviewee or presenter, and was resident psychiatrist on the well-known daytime television programme This Morning. In addition to writing regularly for The Daily Telegraph and The Independent, he also has columns in Times Educational Supplement and Cosmopolitan Magazine.

CriticismsEdit

Persaud's critics claim that with so many media appearances on top of his research and teaching commitments, "Britain's most ubiquitous psychiatrist" (The Guardian) is spreading himself too thin.

In 2005 Persaud was accused of plagiarism. Thomas Blass, professor of psychology at the University of Maryland Baltimore County, alleged that a large proportion of Persaud's article in Progress in Neurology and Psychiatry (Volume 9, Issue 2) had been taken word for word from Blass's work on Stanley Milgram's 1963 "obedience" experiments, as had an earlier article in the Times Educational Supplement. Persaud claimed this had been due to an error, and offered to apologise for not crediting Blass.

An article about Scientology's relationship to psychiatry in The Independent of June 30, 2005 was found to have used parts of a publication of the Canadian Professor Stephen A. Kent without attribution [1]. The paper blamed a "production error" and altered the article in its web archives to properly attribute Kent. [2]

In December 2005, it was announced that two of his articles would be retracted from the British Medical Journal and Progress in Neurology and Psychiatry publications, while his work is reviewed by a panel from the Institute of Psychiatry, King's College.

In April 2006, he resigned as host of BBC Radio 4's All In The Mind show because of the controversy [3].

AwardsEdit

  • Denis Hill Prize, 1991
  • Osler Medal, 1991
  • Fellow of University College London, 2000
  • Fellow of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, 2004
  • Tony Thistlethwaite Award Commendation for Excellence (Medical Journalists' Association), 2005

PublicationsEdit

  • Staying Sane: How to make your mind work for you, September 1997 (Metro)
  • From the Edge of the Couch, March 2003 (Bantam Press)
  • The Motivated Mind, March 2005 (Bantam Press)

See alsoEdit

External linksEdit

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