Dr Anthony John O'Brien

BA, MPhil(Hons)


Tony entered general nursing at the Otago Hospital Board School of Nursing in 1974 and completed a psychiatric qualification at the Auckland Hospital Board School of Nursing (Carrington Hospital) in 1982.  His clinical background is in adolescent inpatient care, acute adult inpatient care and liaison psychiatry.  Tony has held a previous teaching position at Manukau Institute of Technology and has taught at The University of Auckland since 1997. He is also employed as a Nurse Specialist in Liaison Psychiatry. He has research and teaching interests in standards of practice and ethical issues in mental health care. Tony's PhD examines use of mental health legislation in New Zealand.

Research | Current

Research interests

  • Mental health
  • Mental health nursing
  • Social issues in mental health
  • Therapeutic relationships
  • Mental health legislation

Committees/Professional groups/Services

  • Reviewer:  Nursing Praxis in New Zealand;
  • Member, Editorial Board: International Journal of Mental Health Nursing;
  • Member, Editorial Board: Journal of Psychaitric and Mental Health Nursing;
  • Reviewer:  Australian eJournal for Mental Health Promotion.
  • Reviewer: Contemporary Nurse 
  • Reviewer: Health and Place

Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)

  • Butler, H., & O'Brien AJ (2018). Access to specialist palliative care services by people with severe and persistent mental illness: A retrospective cohort study. International Journal of Mental Health Nursing, 27 (2), 737-746. 10.1111/inm.12360
  • Thom, K., O'Brien AJ, & Tellez, J. J. (2015). Service user and clinical perspectives of psychiatric advance directives in New Zealand. International Journal of Mental Health Nursing, 24 (6), 554-560. 10.1111/inm.12157
    URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2292/31591
  • O’Brien AJ (2015). Madness in civilization. A cultural history of insanity from the Bible to Freud, from the madhouse to modern medicine. Psychosis, 7 (4), 370-371. 10.1080/17522439.2015.1070371
  • O'Brien A (2015). On reading. Journal of psychiatric and mental health nursing, 22 (5), 287-288. 10.1111/jpm.12235
  • Lang, M., Waterworth, S., & O'Brien A (2015). What are the factors that influence the delivery of smoking cessation advice in critical care?. Nursing in Critical Care10.1111/nicc.12190
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Susan Waterworth
  • Thom, K., & O'Brien A (2015). Environmental factors in the development of schizophrenia: Implications of a recent New Zealand legal case. Psychiatry, Psychology and Law, 22 (6), 795-799. 10.1080/13218719.2015.1112338
    URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2292/31590
  • O'Brien AJ (2014). The production of the committed subject. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF MENTAL HEALTH NURSING, 23, 29-29.
  • O'Brien AJ (2014). Health effects of TASER™ electronic control devices. Journal of emergency nursing: JEN : official publication of the Emergency Department Nurses Association, 40 (5)10.1016/j.jen.2014.04.011


Contact details

Primary office location

M&HS BUILDING 505 - Bldg 505
Level 2, Room 201
New Zealand

Web links