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Benjamin S. Bunney, MD (left); John H. Krystal, MD (center); and William E. Bunney, Jr, MD (right).
Photo credit: Elisabeth Fall

Yale Department of Psychiatry at the 2013 Annual Meeting of the American Psychiatric Association

The 166th Annual Meeting of the American Psychiatric Association was held in San Francisco from May 18-22, 2013. Yale faculty, alumni, residents and medical students made significant contributions to the meeting's program. Read more 

On Monday, May 20th, the department held its annual alumni reception at the University Club of San Francisco. Distinguished Alumni Awards were presented to Benjamin S. Bunney, MD and William E. Bunney, Jr, MD. View the reception photo album 

Girls who are sexually abused are more likely to start using substances before age 10

Young girls who have been sexually abused are at far greater risk of picking up their first drink or using drugs as preteens, a new study finds. Carolyn Sartor, PhD, assistant professor of psychiatry, is lead author. The study, published in the journal Addiction, is the first to demonstrate that childhood sexual abuse has an early impact on girls' use of alcohol, marijuana and tobacco. Read more / View the study 

Research identifies possible genetic markers for treatment response to lithium in patients with bipolar disorder

New data suggests that individual differences in the treatment response to lithium in patients with bipolar disorder may occur at the genetic level. Researchers identified a number of gene-expression changes that were specific to patients who responded favorably to lithium. Robert Beech, MD, PhD, assistant professor of psychiatry, is lead author. Read more / View the study 

Pain research and education center receives funding to establish a VA Center of Innovation

The Pain Research, Informatics, Medical comorbidities, and Education (PRIME) Center located at the VA Connecticut Healthcare System West Haven campus has recently been awarded a five-year VA Health Services Research and Development Service grant that establishes a VA Center of Innovation. Robert Kerns, PhD, professor of psychiatry, of neurology, and of psychology, is director of the PRIME Center. Read more 

Crusto receives grant to explore link between children's exposure to trauma and their mental and physical development

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the nation's leading philanthropy on health and health care, has awarded Cindy A. Crusto, PhD, associate professor of psychiatry, a midcareer grant through its New Connections program. Crusto is affiliated with the department's Psychology Section and the Division of Prevention and Community Research. Read more 

Yale hosts experts on training and practice in trauma

A national consensus conference entitled, "Advancing the Science of Education, Training and Practice in Trauma" was recently held in New Haven. Sixty national trauma experts were invited to identify the empirically-informed knowledge, attitude and skills that mental health providers must have from a "competency" perspective when providing services to traumatized children and adults. Joan Cook, PhD, associate professor of psychiatry, served as conference chair. Read more 

Global mental health: Treating the mind as well as the body

Since 2004, James Phillips, MD (left), associate clinical professor of psychiatry, and Mark Rego, MD (right), assistant clinical professor of psychiatry, have offered mental health care to patients in a city high in the Peruvian Andes. Read more 

New literary magazine focuses on mental health

The Yale Program for Recovery and Community Health announces the publication of the inaugural issue of The Perch, a new arts and literary magazine. Published content complements the program's core focus on issues of health in the community and personal journeys through life. The magazine takes a broad and holistic view of mental health as encompassing its physical, emotional, and spiritual aspects. View the issue 

Department launches listserv for faculty and alumni

The department has launched a new listserv to facilitate more direct communication amongst its faculty and alumni. The Voluntary Faculty Committee encourages you to join this professional dialogue which is open to individuals with a current faculty appointment as well as former trainees. If you have questions, please join the listserv and ask the list managers, or contact Deborah Fried, MD, assistant clinical professor of psychiatry. Read more and join the listserv 

"Becoming Dr. Ruth" takes the stage

Dr. Ruth Headshot 100x100 A play that explores the biography of on-air therapist "Dr. Ruth" Westheimer is on stage at TheaterWorks Hartford through July 7th. A one-woman show set in the therapist's home in Upper Manhattan, "Becoming Dr. Ruth" is described by The New York Times as "both inspiring and highly enjoyable." Westheimer is a lecturer in psychiatry at Yale. Read more 

The importance of training new addiction specialists

Ismene Petrakis, MD, professor of psychiatry and chief of psychiatry for the VA Connecticut Healthcare System, joined a radio discussion on training new addiction specialists and the current state of treatment for individuals suffering from drug and alcohol abuse. Petrakis is the director of Yale's Addiction Psychiatry Fellowship. Listen to the full program online 

Faculty deliver TEDx talks on neurofeedback and mindfulness

In recent TEDx talks, Judson Brewer, MD, PhD (left), assistant professor of psychiatry, advised an audience to get the most out of life by getting out of their own way; and Hedy Kober, PhD (right), assistant professor of psychiatry and of psychology, discussed the benefits of mindfulness. Watch Dr. Brewer's TEDx Talk / Watch Dr. Kober's TEDx Talk 

When more medications mean less treatment

In a guest blog at Psychiatric Times, Andres Barkil-Oteo, MD, MSc, assistant professor of psychiatry, suggests that continued reliance on a limited number of antipsychotic medications at the expense of other effective treatments may constitute a barrier to effective patient-centered care. Barkil-Oteo presented the topic at the 2013 APA Annual Meeting in a workshop titled "The Future of Psychiatry Through the Eyes of New Psychiatrists." Read more 

Morris receives mentor award from Yale Graduate School

Evan Morris, PhD, associate professor of diagnostic radiology, of biomedical engineering, and of psychiatry, received a 2013 Mentor Award from Yale Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. The award recognizes superb teaching, advising and mentoring of graduate students at the University. Morris is co-director for imaging at the Yale PET Center. Read more 

Cohen DePalma among outstanding administrative assistants

The Yale Medical Group recently recognized outstanding adminstrative assistants across the medical campus. Ann Cohen DePalma, senior administrative assistant in the department's residency program, was among the individuals with the most nominations. Read more 

Yale to host 2nd Yale-Riggs parenting conference

The second Yale-Riggs Conference on Partnerships, Parenting, and Family Systems will focus on the reciprocal effects of addiction on family process and family process on addiction. The conference will be held Friday, June 21st and Saturday, June 22nd at the Yale Child Study Center. Thomas McMahon, PhD, associate professor of psychiatry and in the Child Study Center, is a conference chair. Read more / Register online 

Books by Yale Psychiatry Faculty 

Brainwashed: The Seductive Appeal of Mindless Neuroscience

Brainwashed: The Seductive Appeal of Mindless Neuroscience, co-authored by Sally Satel, MD, lecturer in psychiatry, suggests many of the real-world applications of human neuroscience actually gloss over its limitations and intricacies, and at times obscure the myriad factors that shape our behavior and identities. Read more 

Fundamentals of Geriatric Psychiatry

Fundamentals of Geriatric Psychiatry highlights the mental health and addiction issues that are often encountered in people over the age of 65. The book interprets the latest data in an easy to read manner and includes a practice test for clinicians taking certification exams in geriatric psychiatry. Rajesh Tampi, MBBS, DMedSci, FAPA, associate clinical professor of psychiatry, is a co-editor. Read more 

Alumni Spotlight

SAMHSA appoints McCance-Katz as its first chief medical officer

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration has announced the appointment of Elinore F. McCance-Katz, MD, PhD, as its first chief medical officer. She joins SAMHSA from her position as the state medical director for the California Department of Alcohol and Drug Programs, and as a professor of psychiatry at the University of California, San Francisco. McCance-Katz is an alumnus of the Yale psychiatry residency. Read more 

Commentary: "Lost in Medication"

"The system rewards efficiency, not empathy," writes Sarah Mourra, MD, in The Atlantic. She argues for putting the "psychosocial" part of the biopsychosocial treatment model into practice. A graduate of the Yale psychiatry residency, Mourra is currently a geriatric psychiatry fellow at University of California, Los Angeles. Read more 

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