• The University of Western Australia (M560), 35 Stirling Highway,

    6009 Perth


  • 574 Citations
  • 14 h-Index
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Personal profile


Dr Melissa O'Donnell is a nationally and internationally recognised researcher in the area of child abuse and neglect. Her work utilises linked government data from the Western Australian Departments of Health, Mental Health, Justice, Police, and Communities and she also utilises the national AIHW data. Her research is focused on investigating and monitoring outcomes and risk and proctective factors for children and families who expereince child abuse and neglect and external cases of injury. Dr O'Donnell has successefully collaborated with government agencies to inform policy and practice to improve outcomes for children through prevention and early intervention. Her work has contributed to national and state policy and practice including the National Child Protection Framework and the development of the first Youth Health Policy for Western Australia. Dr O'Donnell has provided her expertise to the United Nations and sits on the International Working Group on Child Maltreatment Data Collections through the International Society for the Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect.

Education/Academic qualification

Psychology, Masters of Psychology, The University of Western Australia

Psychology, Bachelor of Psychology (Honours)

Education, Diploma of Education

Pediatrics and Child Health, PhD


  • Social and Welfare Issues
  • Health
  • child abuse and neglect
  • out-of-home care
  • data linkage
  • administrative data

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics where Melissa O'Donnell is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • 31 Similar Profiles
Western Australia Medicine & Life Sciences
Child Abuse Medicine & Life Sciences
Home Care Services Medicine & Life Sciences
Mothers Medicine & Life Sciences
Population Medicine & Life Sciences
Cohort Studies Medicine & Life Sciences
Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome Medicine & Life Sciences
Mental Health Medicine & Life Sciences

Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Research Output 2008 2019

Data Linkage: Canadian and Australian Perspectives on a Valuable Methodology for Intellectual and Developmental Disability Research

Balogh, R., Leonard, H., Bourke, J., Brameld, K., Downs, J., Hansen, M., Glasson, E., Lin, E., Lloyd, M., Lunsky, Y., O'Donnell, M., Shooshtari, S., Wong, K. & Krahn, G., 1 Oct 2019, In : Intellectual and developmental disabilities. 57, 5, p. 439-462 24 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Developmental Disabilities
Information Storage and Retrieval
Intellectual Disability
Disabled Persons

Disability “In-Justice”: The Benefits and Challenges of “Yarning” With Young People Undergoing Diagnostic Assessment for Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder in a Youth Detention Center

Hamilton, S., Reibel, T., Maslen, S., Watkins, R., Jacinta, F., Passmore, H., Mutch, R., O’Donnell, M., Braithwaite, V. & Bower, C., 6 Nov 2019, In : Qualitative Health Research.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders
Social Justice
Cross-Sectional Studies

Hospitalisations for maternal assault are associated with increased risk of child protection involvement

Orr, C., Fisher, C., Sims, S., Preen, D., Glauert, R. & O'Donnell, M., Sep 2019, In : Child Abuse and Neglect. 95, 104014.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Child Abuse
Western Australia
Domestic Violence

Overcrowded housing: One of a constellation of vulnerabilities for child sexual abuse

Cant, R. L., O'Donnell, M., Sims, S. & Harries, M., 1 Jul 2019, In : Child Abuse and Neglect. 93, p. 239-248 10 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Sexual Child Abuse
Sex Offenses
Western Australia
Open Access
Information Storage and Retrieval
Child Abuse
Mental Health
Vulnerable Populations

Projects 2011 2022