Post-Graduate Curriculum

uab medical students 20090806 1800592436The UAB Department of Psychiatry offers both a three-year and four-year residency program in general psychiatry. The four-year program is designed for the new medical school graduate and begins with a year of clinical experience in internal medicine, family medicine or pediatrics, neurology, and general psychiatry. The university participates in the National Intern and Residency Matching Program (NRMP) for appointment in this program. The three-year program begins in the second postgraduate year following an internship in a primary care field and does not require involvement with the Matching Program.

Post-Graduate Year I (PGY-I)

First year residents are expected to formalize their identity as they assume increasing responsibilities for patient care. Rotations in medicine, neurology, and emergency care provide a background in clinical diagnosis and comprehensive treatment. Psychiatry rotations in the first year occur within the Adult Inpatient Program of the Center or Psychiatric Medicine with interdisciplinary inpatient teams led by an attending psychiatrist with special clinical expertise, who stays abreast of the most current approaches. Individual supervision is provided when on psychiatry rotations.  A variety of skills necessary for interviewing, diagnosis, and treatment planning are developed. Residents participate in a two part Overview of Psychotherapy course during the PG-I year. This course provides a general overview of what to expect in their PG-II year when they pick up their own psychotherapy patients.

Post-Graduate Year II (PGY-II)

Second year residents further solidify their competence and identity as developing psychiatrists. Residents broaden their inpatient experience with rotations on the Geriatric, Adolescent, Substance Abuse, and Adult inpatient units of the Center for Psychiatric Medicine. This allows residents to hone interview skills, expand their knowledge of the Psychopathology of various populations, and acquire greater skills in working with individuals, families and groups. The Emergency Psychiatry rotation provides experience in caring for acutely mentally ill patients and an opportunity to learn crisis management skills. A rotation in Consultation Psychiatry provides the opportunity to learn about the care of psychiatric problems in the medically or surgically ill. PG-II residents will pick up at least two psychotherapy outpatients and will have 2 official supervisors:  (1) Cognitive-Behavioral Supervisor, and (2) Psychodynamic Supervisor.  The PGY-II resident will meet weekly for group medication check supervision.   Although the roles of each of the supervisors may overlap, each has specific responsibilities.

POSTGRADUATE YEAR III (PGY-III)

Third year residents develop their skills in outpatient evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment with longitudinal experiences in adult clinics at the Community Psychiatry Program, Neuropsychiatry Clinic, VA Clinic and Forensic Psychiatry Program. They are afforded the opportunity to follow a variety of patients longitudinally and learn treatment approaches tailored to the populations and problems encountered in outpatient work. Throughout the year the residents attend seminars and didactics geared toward solidifying their skills in outpatient evaluation, pharmacological and psychological interventions. Residents participate outpatient care involving Cognitive Behavioral, Psychodynamic, Supportive, Brief, Combined and Couples therapies. Interdisciplinary teams and individually assigned faculty supervisors continue to provide structure and guidance during this year of training.

POSTGRADUATE YEAR IV (PGY-IV)

The fourth year provides residents with an opportunity to differentiate into several areas of special interest within psychiatry. It also serves as a time for consolidation of the various experiences of training in preparation for transition to being a board eligible psychiatrist. Required rotations include serving as an adult in-patient acting attending, supervision of the resident clinic and a one month substance abuse rotation. Electives may include research, clinical, administrative, or teaching experiences and span a broad spectrum of clinical populations. Training also continues in Cognitive Behavioral, Psychodynamic, Supportive, Brief, and Combined therapies with supervision from assigned faculty supervisors. Residents are expected to complete a scholarly project and offer a formal presentation at Departmental Grand Rounds. Career counseling is also provided throughout the year in preparation for graduation as well as a preparatory course for psychiatry board exams.