Psychiatry residency training at SIU School of Medicine developed with and still retains the perspective that adequate psychiatric care of the individual patient requires knowledge of the disorder in the context of the whole person. As Robert Becker, MD, the former department Chairman of Psychiatry at SIU School of Medicine has written, "Only biochemicals have predictable and regular disorders. Only people have diversely individualized diseases."* This approach involves understanding the nature, course, and treatment of psychiatric disorders within the framework of the human condition.
The resident trainee must learn the assessment of the signs and symptoms of mental illness in their individualized meaning for the patient and the system in which the patient exists. The training at SIU School of Medicine emphasizes the biopsychosocial formulation drawing upon education in biological psychiatry and psychotherapy that provides guidance for the optimal treatment plan.
To better prepare our trainees for the ever changing face of psychiatry, the program provides faculty supervision within a variety of clinical settings and comprehensive seminars in psychopathology, psychopharmacology, psychotherapies, research, and developmental theory to name a few.
Case conferences are held throughout the week and include topics in evidence-based psychiatry methods, developmental disabilities, transcultural issues, and a journal club. Training occurs at multiple sites including Springfield's two general hospitals; Memorial Medical Center and St. John's Hospital as well as McFarland Mental Health Center; a free standing state operated inpatient facility. The categorical psychiatry program is closely allied with the combined medicine and psychiatry training program, providing a view of the importance of and interplay between underlying medical conditions and the emergence of psychopathology.
The SIU School of Medicine Psychiatry residency program offers a fully accredited four-year eclectic experience in community-based psychiatry. Education and training emphasizes integrated approaches by providing extensive exposure to both biological and psychological models, as well as multi-specialty based healthcare.
A hallmark of our program is that each resident can expect to have a close working relationship with faculty. Extensive one-on-one supervision is provided each year as importantly, education and training encompasses a broad range of settings and clinical populations.
An unusual feature of our program is that residents are introduced to psychotherapeutic interventions in their first year. Progressive clinical experience and responsibility is encouraged and directly supported by educational programs and specialized clinical supervision.
Educational programs are given high priority. Regularly scheduled seminars and case conferences are timed to augment clinical rotations. Scholarly activities also address current practice issues through our year-round series of resident conferences and faculty presentations. Research opportunities are provided to all residents and include clinical and basic science areas related to psychiatry in the dementias, clinical psychopharmacology, developmental disabilities, electroconvulsive therapy, and medical education.
SIU School of Medicine also offers a five-year combined Internal Medicine and Psychiatry residency training program that leads to eligibility for board certification in both specialties.
*Becker, R.E. PTSD: A Disorder
and a Reaction. American Journal of Psychiatry