Psychosomatic Medicine (Consultation Liaison Fellowship)

Gita Ramamurthy, MD, Program Director
Kola Alao, MD, MRCPsych, FAPM, Co-Program Director
Contact:
Cassandra Read, Secretary, Psychosomatic Medicine/Consultation Liaison Training Program
Phone: 315 464-5631
Fax: 315 464-5632
Email: readc@upstate.edu

The Department of Psychiatry has a one-year fellowship training program in Psychosomatic Medicine. (Consultation-Liaison Psychiatry) The program provides in-depth, balanced experience in didactics, clinical experience and research in Psychosomatic Medicine at a PGY4 level.

Two positions are available every year in the ACGME-accredited program. The Department of Psychiatry has several board-certified full time and part time faculty members who offer a strong didactic curriculum.

Clinical experience is directly supervised by 3 Consultation Liaison Psychiatrists (Board-certified in Psychosomatic Medicine) and involves inpatient and outpatient consultation liaison experience. The training is in an up to date, well-established university teaching hospital and an academic affiliated veteran’s hospital.

Responsibilities

Responsibilities of the psychosomatic fellow include providing inpatient and outpatient consultation, opportunities for collaboration, research, and teaching of medical students, psychiatry residents, and psychology interns.

Consultation Liaison Track

For those fellows who prefer to focus primarily on general consultation liaison, aside from Kola Alao, MD and Gita Ramamurthy, MD, the co-directors of the fellowship, our faculty include Marvin Koss, MD, Kevin O'Connor, MD and Zsuzsa Meszaros, MD

Tracks

Fifty percent of the "core" time of the fellowship is spent in the clinical C/L service. We have a strong teaching service with dedicated, enthusiastic attendings.

We also offer the opportunity to apply to work with groundbreaking researchers and clinicians in specific tracks of interest. Tracks offered include a focus on Psychotherapy, Psychopharmacology, specific medical disorders and Neuroscience. Since fellows are expected to complete a research project, they may choose to do their project in the context of any of the tracks to which they are accepted.

Psychotherapy Division

The division of psychotherapy offers excellence in clinical care, teaching and research in psychodynamic psychotherapy with an emphasis on object relations, postmodern thought, family therapy, and the interface of psychotherapy with neuroscience.

Robert Gregory, MD—Director, Psychotherapy Division. A graduate of Harvard Medical School's psychiatric residency, Dr Gregory has won multiple awards for teaching excellence. He is publishing groundbreaking research demonstrating the effectiveness of psychodynamic psychotherapy for borderline personality disorder in randomized control trials. He developed "the martini glass" model for learning psychotherapy which has been adopted by several residency training programs as an effective and efficient method for achieving competence in psychotherapy. He has also published research in psychosomatic medicine. His work is particularly informed by object relations, postmodern philosophy and neuroscience.

Brian Johnson, MD—Director, Addiction Psychiatry Service. A graduate of Harvard Medical School's psychiatry residency, Dr Johnson has received much recognition for his teaching excellence. He has multiple publications in the field of addiction, and has a particular expertise in "neuropsychoanalysis"—an interdisciplinary field combining neuroscience with psychoanalysis.

David Keith, MD—Beloved to the trainees and his colleagues for his warmth and creative intelligence, Dr Keith is nationally respected for his expertise in family therapy, an area in which he has published extensively. (Hyperlink) He closely collaborated with the late Carl Whitaker, founder of the Symbolic-Experiential school of psychotherapy.

Psychopharmacology Division

Thomas Schwartz, MD—Dr Schwartz has multiple publications in biological psychiatry. He is the recipient of many honors for teaching, including the 2009 President's Award for Excellence in Teaching. He specializes in addressing treatment-refractory depression, and offers unique expertise in the use of the vagal nerve stimulator.

James Megna, MD, PhD—As director of the inpatient psychiatry unit, Dr Megna is known for his excellent teaching/supervision. He is well-versed in both psychotherapy and psychopharmacology. Holding a doctorate in psychopharmacology, he is actively involved in research on the use of psychiatric medication and the epidemiology of serious mental illness. He is an editorial board member for The Carlat Psychiatry Report.

Neuroscience Division

Wendy Kates, PhD—Dr Kates joined the SUNY faculty from Johns Hopkins. As director for the Center for Psychiatric Neuroimaging, her area of research is in the velocardiofacial syndrome (22q11.2 Deletion Syndrome), a disorder which often is associated with the development of schizophrenia or bipolar disorder. Dr Kates received the 2009 Jacobsen Scholar Award that honors midcareer research faculty.

Zsuzsa Meszaros, MD — Dr Meszaros is the recipient of the 2010 President's Award for Excellence in Clinical Research by a Young Investigator. She has received a prestigious Young Investigator grant from NARSAD to study the effectiveness of varenicline in the treatment of alcohol and nicotine dependence in schizophrenia. Bioethics/Humanities Track.

Robert Daly, MD—Dr. Daly is a clinical supervisor and teaches courses in ethics, American culture, and religion. He also teaches bioethics in the Center for Bioethics and Humanities and was the first chair of the University Hospital Ethics Committee and of its Ethics Consultation Service. He has been Chief of Psychiatry and Neurology at Barksdale AFB, USAF, a Visiting Scholar in philosophy at the University of Cambridge (King's College), and a Senior Fellow of the National Endowment for the Humanities. Dr. Daly has lectured in Europe and China as well as throughout the United States. In 1978, he co-founded the Consortium for the Cultural Foundations of Medicine for which he continues to teach courses in bioethics and the philosophy of medicine. He was also a founder of the Institute for Ethics in Health Care, a regional educational organization he led from 1995-2004. Since 1999, he has served as an examiner for doctoral candidates in philosophy and the social sciences at Syracuse University. Dr. Daly has served as an editorial consultant for the Journal of the American Medical Association; Literature and Medicine; and Philosophy, Psychiatry, and Psychology, and has been a consultant to the National Center for the Humanities. His writings appear in such publications as Philosophy and Medicine, Literature and Medicine, The Journal of Religion and Health, HEC Forum, Nutrition, the Psychoanalytic Review, the American Journal of Psychiatry, and Psychiatry. Dr. Daly has received the Distinguished Service Award of the Onondaga County Medical Society, the SUNY Research Foundation's Chancellor's Award for the Social Sciences and Humanities, the Sol Feinstine Alumni Award for Humantarian Service from St. Lawrence University, and a Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from LeMoyne College.

Addiction Track

Brian Johnson, MD—Director, Addiction Psychiatry Service. Dr. is a graduate of Harvard Medical School's psychiatry residency, Dr Johnson has received much recognition for his teaching excellence. He has multiple publications in the field of addiction, and has a particular expertise in "neuropsychoanalysis"—an interdisciplinary field combining neuroscience with psychoanalysis.

Specific Medical Disorders Head Injuries, Chronic Pain

Adekola Alao, MD, MRCPsych, FAPM—A graduate of Oxford University's psychiatric residency, Dr Alao is known by his colleagues and trainees as a dedicated teacher and an excellent clinician. He has published multiple articles on psychosomatic medicine, including chronic pain, traumatic brain injury, and PTSD. Dr Alao is board certified in Psychosomatic Medicine, Pain Management and Addiction Medicine. He has particular expertise in the treatment of head injuries.

Other Medical Disorders

We will likely be able to accommodate interests by fellows who seek more C/L experience in particular medical specialties, such as HIV/cancer/etc. However, such arrangements will depend on the agreement of the other department.

Gita Ramamurthy, MD—Dr Ramamurthy practices outpatient internal medicine and consultation liaison psychiatry. She has a particular expertise in the clinical care of complex medical and psychiatric problems.

APPLICATION PROCEDURE

Psychosomatic Medicine & Consultation Liaison Fellowship

To apply, please submit the following materials:

  • CV
  • A letter of interest
  • Three (3) letters of recommendation from persons familiar with your current work. One should be from your current training director.

Please submit the above to:

Cassandra Read , Secretary, Psychosomatic Medicine/Consultation Liaison Training Program
Department of Psychiatry
SUNY Upstate Medical University
750 E. Adams Street
Syracuse, NY 13210
Phone: 315 464-5631
Fax: 315 464-5632
Email: readc@upstate.edu