Letters to the Editor
In Reply to Walaszek and Reardon:
We are pleased that Drs. Walaszek and Reardon support our comments regarding collaborative care models for psychiatric services. We applaud their innovative efforts at developing such a model for their trainees while emphasizing the importance of quality improvement and advocacy education.
In our article, we predicted two major paradigm shifts in psychiatry’s future. One pertains to the development of collaborative care as a way to deliver psychiatric care. The other involves psychiatrists becoming clinical neuroscientists in order to apply to clinical practice relevant knowledge from rapidly advancing research in systems and molecular neuroscience.
We believe that components of these paradigm shifts will be spearheaded by different psychiatry training programs. Individual training programs have unique strengths that depend on their particular faculty and the priorities and resources of their institutions as well as support from their communities. Drs. Walaszek and Reardon are leaders in implementing a collaborative care approach into residency training. Other programs have the resources and infrastructure to encourage training in clinical neurosciences; such programs are often associated with research-intensive psychiatry departments. Still other programs have strengths in psychotherapeutic and rehabilitative approaches. This diversity in focus is not only healthy but necessary for our field to advance within a rapidly evolving landscape of psychiatry education.1
Different psychiatry departments will explore various models of training, and we predict that momentum will build toward implementing those models that are examples of the paradigm shifts mentioned in our article. Psychiatry residency training directors, vice chairs, and chairs form a community that communicates in various ways, including active use of listservs available to members of the American Association of Directors of Psychiatric Residency Training and the American Association of Chairs of Departments of Psychiatry. In addition, the annual meetings of those two associations are designed to encourage brainstorming about approaches to education, research, and clinical care. These groups will have a major influence in determining the speed with which upcoming changes occur.
Psychiatry has a bright future, and we anticipate that a diverse group of psychiatry departments will lead the way to serve the needs of patients in the context of modern health care while taking advantage of advances in science.
Eugene H. Rubin, MD, PhD
Professor and vice chair for education, Department of Psychiatry, Washington University in St. Louis School of Medicine, St. Louis, Missouri; email@example.com.
Charles F. Zorumski, MD
Samuel B. Guze Professor and head, Department of Psychiatry, Washington University in St. Louis School of Medicine, St. Louis, Missouri
1. Rubin EH, Zorumski CF. Psychiatric education in an era of rapidly occurring scientific advances. Acad Med. 2003;78:351–354