Should Psychiatrists Do Residencies in the Community?


What if psychiatrists provided their insights to the community via residency?

community, residents



My wife and I just heard the wonderful Harlem String Quarter. Besides being another example of their diverse cultural backgrounds becoming so unified in their playing, they also finished off a weekly residency in the community. Such residencies can include going to schools starting with kindergarten on up to seniors to educate and entertain about classical music. In the Q&A after the concert, they discussed planning their illustrative presentation, but improvise as needed.

My wife had done something like this in our hometown of Milwaukee. She wrote and sang about the various ethnic groups who settled in Wisconsin, going around to various grammar schools periodically for years.

Finally, I wondered why psychiatrists do not do the same. Why not do such visiting residencies around the country, as well as shorter presentations, to schools and continuing education programs in our own communities? That might help to reduce stigma and fill in for the lack of formal education about mental health in our schools. Some of the topics could be:

-Normal child development

-Common symptoms of mental disorders

-The differences between a psychiatrist and psychologist

-How to choose a psychiatrist

-The various evidence-based psychotherapies

-Psychiatric medications

-Positive psychiatry and mental health

-Disguised cases

Way back in the beginning of community mental health centers in the late 60s and 70s, community consultations were required. No longer. Let’s revive them along the lines of such classical musicians.

Dr Moffic is an award-winning psychiatrist who specialized in the cultural and ethical aspects of psychiatry and is now in retirement and retirement as a private pro bono community psychiatrist. A prolific writer and speaker, he has done a weekday column titled “Psychiatric Views on the Daily News” and a weekly video, “Psychiatry & Society,” since the COVID-19 pandemic emerged. He was chosen to receive the 2024 Abraham Halpern Humanitarian Award from the American Association for Social Psychiatry. Previously, he received the Administrative Award in 2016 from the American Psychiatric Association, the one-time designation of being a Hero of Public Psychiatry from the Speaker of the Assembly of the APA in 2002, and the Exemplary Psychiatrist Award from the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill in 1991. He is an advocate and activist for mental health issues related to climate instability, physician burnout, and xenophobia. He is now editing the final book in a 4-volume series on religions and psychiatry for Springer: Islamophobia, anti-Semitism, Christianity, and now The Eastern Religions, and Spirituality. He serves on the Editorial Board of Psychiatric Times.

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