| Doctor of Medicine (M.D.)|
Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS/MBChB)
Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (D.O.)
A psychiatrist is a physician who specializes in psychiatry, the branch of medicine devoted to the diagnosis, prevention, study, and treatment of mental disorders. Psychiatrists are medical doctors and evaluate patients to determine whether their symptoms are the result of a physical illness, a combination of physical and mental ailments or strictly mental issues. A psychiatrist usually works within a multi-disciplinary team, which may comprise clinical psychologists, social workers, occupational therapists, and nursing staff. Psychiatrists have broad training in a bio-psycho-social approach to assessment and management of mental illness.
As part of the clinical assessment process, psychiatrists may employ a mental status examination; a physical examination; brain imaging such as a computerized tomography (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), or positron emission tomography (PET) scan; and blood testing. Psychiatrists prescribe medicine, and may also use psychotherapy, although they could also primarily concentrate on medical management and refer to a psychologist or other specialized therapist for weekly to bi-monthly psychotherapy.
The field of psychiatry has many subspecialties (also known as fellowships) that require additional training which are certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology (ABPN) and require Maintenance of Certification Program (MOC) to continue. These include the following:
Further, other specialties that exist include:
The United Council for Neurologic Subspecialties in the United States offers certification and fellowship program accreditation in the subspecialty 'Behavioral Neurology and Neuropsychiatry' (BNNP) - which is open to both neurologists and psychiatrists.
Some psychiatrists specialize in helping certain age groups. Pediatric psychiatry is the area of the profession working with children in addressing psychological problems.Psychiatrists specializing in geriatric psychiatry work with the elderly and are called geriatric psychiatrists or geropsychiatrists. Those who practice psychiatry in the workplace are called occupational psychiatrists in the United States and occupational psychology is the name used for the most similar discipline in the UK. Psychiatrists working in the courtroom and reporting to the judge and jury, in both criminal and civil court cases, are called forensic psychiatrists, who also treat mentally disordered offenders and other patients whose condition is such that they have to be treated in secure units.
Other psychiatrists and mental health professionals in the field of psychiatry may also specialize in psychopharmacology, psychotherapy, psychiatric genetics, neuroimaging, dementia-related disorders such as Alzheimer's disease, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), sleep medicine, pain medicine, palliative medicine, eating disorders, sexual disorders, women's health, global mental health, early psychosis intervention, mood disorders, and anxiety disorders such as obsessive–compulsive disorder (OCD) and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Psychiatrists work in a wide variety of settings. Some are full-time medical researchers, many see patients in private medical practices, consult liaison psychiatrists see patients in hospital settings where psychiatric and other medical conditions interact.
While requirements to become a psychiatrist differ from country to country, all require a medical degree.
In the U.S. and Canada one must first attain the degree of M.D. or D.O., followed by practice as a psychiatric resident for another four years (five years in Canada). This extended period involves comprehensive training in psychiatric diagnosis, psychopharmacology, medical care issues, and psychotherapies. All accredited psychiatry residencies in the United States require proficiency in cognitive-behavioral, brief, psychodynamic, and supportive psychotherapies. Psychiatry residents are required to complete at least four post-graduate months of internal medicine or pediatrics, plus a minimum of two months of neurology during their first year of residency, referred to as an "internship".After completing their training, psychiatrists are eligible to take a specialty board examination to become board-certified. The total amount of time required to complete educational and training requirements in the field of psychiatry in the United States is twelve years after high school. Subspecialists in child and adolescent psychiatry are required to complete a two-year fellowship program, the first year of which can run concurrently with the fourth year of the general psychiatry residency program. This adds one to two years of training.
In the United Kingdom, psychiatrists must hold a medical degree.These degrees are often abbreviated MB BChir, MB BCh, MB ChB, BM BS, or MB BS. Following this, the individual will work as a Foundation House Officer for two additional years in the UK, or one year as Intern in the Republic of Ireland to achieve registration as a basic medical practitioner. Training in psychiatry can then begin and it is taken in two parts: three years of Basic Specialist Training culminating in the MRCPsych exam followed by three years of Higher Specialist Training referred to as "ST4-6" in the UK and "Senior Registrar Training" in the Republic of Ireland. Candidates with MRCPsych degree and complete basic training must reinterview for higher specialist training. At this stage, the development of special interests such as forensic, child/adolescent takes place. At the end of 3 years of higher specialist training, candidates are awarded a CCT (UK) or CCST (Ireland), both meaning Certificate of Completion of (Specialist) Training. At this stage, the psychiatrist can register as a specialist, and the qualification of CC(S)T is recognized in all EU/EEA states. As such, training in the UK and Ireland is considerably longer than in the US or Canada and frequently takes around 8–9 years following graduation from medical school. Those with a CC(S)T will be able to apply for Consultant posts. Those with training from outside the EU/EEA should consult local/native medical boards to review their qualifications and eligibility for equivalence recognition (for example, those with a US residency and ABPN qualification).
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In the Netherlands, one must complete medical school after which one is certified as a medical doctor. After a strict selection program, one can specialize in psychiatry: a 4.5-year specialization. During this specialization, the resident has to do a 6-month residency in the field of social psychiatry, a 12-month residency in a field of their own choice (which can be child psychiatry, forensic psychiatry, somatic medicine, or medical research). To become an adolescent psychiatrist, one has to do an extra specialization period of 2 more years. In short, this means that it takes at least 10.5 years of study to become a psychiatrist which can go up to 12.5 years if one becomes a children's and adolescent psychiatrist.
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In India, an MBBS degree is the basic qualification needed to do Psychiatry. After completing MBBS (including internship) one can attend various PG Medical Entrance Exams and take MD in psychiatry which is a 3-year course. Diploma Course in Psychiatry or DNB Psychiatry can also be taken to become a Psychiatrist.
In Pakistan, one must complete basic medical education, an MBBS, then get registered with Pakistan Medical and Dental Council as a General Practitioner after a one-year mandatory internship, House Job. After registration with PMDC, one has to go for FCPS-I exam, after that four-year training in Psychiatry under College of Physicians and Surgeons Pakistan.Training includes rotations in General Medicine, Neurology, and Clinical Psychology for 3 months each, during first two years. There is a mid-exam IMM (Intermediate Module) and a final exam after 4 years.
Neurology is a branch of medicine dealing with disorders of the nervous system. Neurology deals with the diagnosis and treatment of all categories of conditions and disease involving the central and peripheral nervous systems, including their coverings, blood vessels, and all effector tissue, such as muscle. Neurological practice relies heavily on the field of neuroscience, the scientific study of the nervous system.
Forensic psychiatry is a subspeciality of psychiatry and is related to criminology. It encompasses the interface between law and psychiatry. According to the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law, it is defined as "a subspecialty of psychiatry in which scientific and clinical expertise is applied in legal contexts involving civil, criminal, correctional, regulatory, or legislative matters, and in specialized clinical consultations in areas such as risk assessment or employment." A forensic psychiatrist provides services – such as determination of competency to stand trial – to a court of law to facilitate the adjudicative process and provide treatment, such as medications and psychotherapy, to criminals.
Residency or postgraduate training is specifically a stage of graduate medical education. It refers to a qualified physician, podiatrist, dentist, pharmacist, or veterinarian who practices medicine, usually in a hospital or clinic, under the direct or indirect supervision of a senior medical clinician registered in that specialty such as an attending physician or consultant. In many jurisdictions, successful completion of such training is a requirement in order to obtain an unrestricted license to practice medicine, and in particular a license to practice a chosen specialty. An individual engaged in such training may be referred to as a resident, registrar or trainee depending on the jurisdiction. Residency training may be followed by fellowship or sub-specialty training.
The Hong Kong College of Psychiatrists is a member College of the Hong Kong Academy of Medicine. It oversees the provision of specialist training and continuing medical education in psychiatry in Hong Kong.
Neuropsychiatry is a branch of medicine that deals with mental disorders attributable to diseases of the nervous system. It preceded the current disciplines of psychiatry and neurology, which had common training, however, psychiatry and neurology have subsequently split apart and are typically practiced separately. Nevertheless, neuropsychiatry has become a growing subspecialty of psychiatry and it is also closely related to the fields of neuropsychology and behavioral neurology.
The American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology, Inc. (ABPN) is a not-for-profit corporation that was founded in 1934 following conferences of committees appointed by the American Psychiatric Association, the American Neurological Association, and the then "Section on Nervous and Mental Diseases" of the American Medical Association. This action was taken as a method of identifying qualified specialists in psychiatry and neurology. The ABPN is one of 24 member boards of the American Board of Medical Specialties.
Psychiatric and mental health nurses in the U.S. Army Nurse Corps employing groundbreaking protocols and treatments in psychiatric issues to address the unique challenges that our service men and women face, more commonly post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injuries. Most people understand that trauma exposure is a popular occupational hazard for military members. Psychiatric screenings, before and during their enlistment, and treatments after being exposed to warfare, death, destruction, and torture have been extremely beneficial for military personnel and their dependents.
Addiction medicine is a medical subspecialty that deals with the diagnosis, prevention, evaluation, treatment, and recovery of persons with addiction, of those with substance-related and addictive disorders, and of people who show unhealthy use of substances including alcohol, nicotine, prescription medicine and other illicit and licit drugs. The medical subspecialty often crosses over into other areas, since various aspects of addiction fall within the fields of public health, psychology, social work, mental health counseling, psychiatry, and internal medicine, among others. Incorporated within the specialty are the processes of detoxification, rehabilitation, harm reduction, abstinence-based treatment, individual and group therapies, oversight of halfway houses, treatment of withdrawal-related symptoms, acute intervention, and long term therapies designed to reduce likelihood of relapse. Some specialists, primarily those who also have expertise in family medicine or internal medicine, also provide treatment for disease states commonly associated with substance use, such as hepatitis and HIV infection.
A mental health professional is a health care practitioner or social and human services provider who offers services for the purpose of improving an individual's mental health or to treat mental disorders. This broad category was developed as a name for community personnel who worked in the new community mental health agencies begun in the 1970s to assist individuals moving from state hospitals, to prevent admissions, and to provide support in homes, jobs, education, and community. These individuals were the forefront brigade to develop the community programs, which today may be referred to by names such as supported housing, psychiatric rehabilitation, supported or transitional employment, sheltered workshops, supported education, daily living skills, affirmative industries, dual diagnosis treatment, individual and family psychoeducation, adult day care, foster care, family services and mental health counseling.
Adolescent medicine also known as adolescent and young adult medicine is a medical subspecialty that focuses on care of patients who are in the adolescent period of development. This period begins at puberty and lasts until growth has stopped, at which time adulthood begins. Typically, patients in this age range will be in the last years of middle school up until college graduation. In developed nations, the psychosocial period of adolescence is extended both by an earlier start, as the onset of puberty begins earlier, and a later end, as patients require more years of education or training before they reach economic independence from their parents.
A combined internal medicine and psychiatry residency program is a post-graduate medical education program in the United States, which leads to board eligibility in both internal medicine and psychiatry. That is, a graduate of the residency is both an internist as well as a psychiatrist. The program takes five years of post-graduate medical training. There are only 9 such programs in the country, and around eighteen positions available for new applicants.
A Fellowship is the period of medical training, in the United States and Canada, that a physician, dentist, or veterinarian may undertake after completing a specialty training program (residency). During this time, the physician is known as a fellow. Fellows are capable of acting as an attending physician or a consultant physician in the specialist field in which they were trained, such as Internal Medicine or Pediatrics. After completing a fellowship in the relevant sub-specialty, the physician is permitted to practice without direct supervision by other physicians in that sub-specialty, such as Cardiology or Oncology.
Child and adolescent psychiatry is a branch of psychiatry that focuses on the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of mental disorders in children, adolescents, and their families. It investigates the biopsychosocial factors that influence the development and course of these psychiatric disorders and treatment responses to various interventions.
Geriatric psychiatry, also known as geropsychiatry, psychogeriatrics or psychiatry of old age, is a subspecialty of psychiatry dealing with the study, prevention, and treatment of mental disorders in humans with old age. As the population ages, particularly in developing countries, this field is becoming more needed. The diagnosis, treatment and management of dementia and depression are two areas of this field. Geriatric psychiatry is an official subspecialty in psychiatry with a defined curriculum of study and core competencies.
Psychiatry is the medical specialty devoted to the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of mental disorders. These include various maladaptations related to mood, behaviour, cognition, and perceptions. See glossary of psychiatry.
Member of the Royal College of Psychiatrists (MRCPsych) is a postnominal qualification awarded to physicians who have completed the prescribed training requirements and membership examinations mandated by the Royal College of Psychiatrists. MRCPsych is awarded after the completion of core psychiatry training and successful completion of examinations. A further three years within psychiatry and a certificate of completion of specialist training are required to register as a psychiatrist on the General Medical Council specialist register. The examination has undergone a radical change in the past few years, notably in terms of focus and structure.
The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists (RANZCP) is the principal organisation representing the medical specialty of psychiatry in Australia and New Zealand and has responsibility for training, examining and awarding the qualification of Fellowship of the College (FRANZCP) to medical practitioners.
Addiction psychiatry is a medical subspecialty within psychiatry that focuses on the evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment of people who are suffering from one or more disorders related to addiction. This may include disorders involving legal and illegal drugs, gambling, sex, food, and other impulse control disorders. Addiction psychiatrists are substance abuse experts. Growing amounts of scientific knowledge, such as the health effects and treatments to substance abuse, have led to advancements in the field of addiction psychiatry. These advancements in understanding the neurobiology of rewarding behavior, along with federal funding, has allowed for ample opportunity for research in the discipline of addiction psychiatry. Addiction psychiatry is an expanding field, and currently there is a high demand for substance abuse experts in both the private and public sector.
The following outline is provided as an overview of and topical guide to psychiatry:
The American Osteopathic Board of Neurology and Psychiatry (AOBNP) is an organization that provides board certification to qualified Doctors of Osteopathic Medicine (D.O.) who specialize in disorders of the nervous system (neurologists) and to qualified Doctors of Osteopathic Medicine who specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of mental disorders (psychiatrists).
Pass the Casc (2012, 2018) by Dr. Seshni Moodliar for the CASC MRCPsych exam