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Keri-Leigh Cassidy

Associate Professor

Department of Psychiatry

Email: keri-leigh.cassidy@nshealth.ca
Phone: 902-473-2927
Mailing Address: 
Seniors Mental Health Service
6th Floor, Room 6516, AJLB
5909 Veterans' Memorial Lane
Halifax, NS B3H 2E2
Research Topics:
  • Geriatric Psychiatry
  • Late Life Mood and Anxiety Disorders
  • Late Life Psychotherapy
  • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
  • Seniors Mental Health Promotion

Related information


BA (Yale University)
MD/ BSc (Dalhousie University)
Psychiatry Residency (University of Toronto)


Dr. Cassidy is the Clinical Academic Director of Dalhousie’s Geriatric Psychiatry / Seniors Mental Health Program of the Nova Scotia Health Authority, a multidisciplinary outreach, outpatient and inpatient service serving seniors in Nova Scotia. This program is also the only subspecialty training program in Geriatric Psychiatry in the Atlantic Provinces. Dr. Cassidy is the Co-Chair of the Nova Scotia Seniors’ Mental Health Network (NSSMHN) and director of the NSSMHN Geriatric Psychiatry Continuing Medical Education Program. Dr. Cassidy served as Board Member of the Canadian Academy for Geriatric Psychiatry (CAGP) from 2005-2011 and rejoined the Board in 2015.

Dr. Cassidy is a nationally recognized leader in the area of late life psychotherapy, mood and anxiety disorders, and lecturer at the CAGP National Review Course. In 2010 Dr. Cassidy spearheaded the Fountain of Health” Initiative, a national seniors’ mental health promotion effort to bring the current science of neuroplasticity, resilience and optimal aging to healthcare providers, and to the Canadian public.

Research interests

Dr. Cassidy’s research interests include late life mood and anxiety disorders, psychotherapy including cognitive behavioural therapy, seniors’ mental health promotion, resilience and optimal aging. Her work is interdisciplinary, collaborative, and geared both to contributing to the academic literature and to affecting change in clinical practice and policy at federal and provincial levels.

Selected publications  

  • K.L. Cassidy, P. Devichand, and K. Rockwood, Association between Late-Life Depression and Vascular Risks, Executive Dysfunction, and Adverse Outcomes: Secondary Analysis of the Canadian Study of Health and Aging, in Canadian Journal of Geriatrics, 2006;9:3:110-6.
  • K.L. Cassidy, N. Rector, The Silent Geriatric Giant: Anxiety Disorders in Late Life, in Geriatrics and Aging, 2008;11:3:150-6.Z.
  • Ursuliak, K.L. Cassidy, D. Burke and G. Eskes, An Observational Study of the Effectiveness of Group Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Late Life Depressive and Anxiety Disorders, in Canadian Journal of Geriatrics, 2008;11:2:88-93.
  • D M. Bosma, K.L. Cassidy, J.K. LeClair, S. Helsdingen and P. Devichand, K. LeClair, A Knowledge Transfer Study on the Utility of the Nova Scotia Seniors Mental Health Network to Implement National Guidelines in Seniors Mental Health, in Canadian Journal of Geriatrics, 2011;14:1.
  • E V. Thoo, K.L. Cassidy, J. Freer, The Fountain of Health Iniative: Bringing Seniors’ Mental Health Promotion into Clinical Practice, Canadian Journal of Geriatrics, 2015; December.

Selected awards and honours  

  • Canadian Academy for Geriatric Psychiatry Regional Contribution Award (2014).
  • R. Wayne Putnam Award for Outstanding Contribution to Community Continuing Professional  Development (2013).
  • Vision Award, Nova Scotia Mental Health Foundation (2011)
  • Teacher of the Year Award, Department of Psychiatry, Dalhousie University (2007)
  • Eli Lilly Award, for Exceptional Promise for Leadership in the Field (2001)



  • World Psychiatric Association
  • American Psychiatric Association
  • International Psychiatric Association


  • Canadian Medical Association
  • Canadian Psychiatric Association
  • Canadian Academy of Geriatric Psychiatry
  • Canadian Coalition for Seniors Mental Health
  • Nova Scotia Psychiatric Association
  • Nova Scotia Medical Society