Medical College of Wisconsin
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The state of the service: a survey of psychiatry resident education in psychosomatic medicine. Psychosomatics 2013;54(6):560-6



Pubmed ID




Scopus ID

2-s2.0-84887536005   8 Citations


BACKGROUND: Although required by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education, training of general psychiatry residents in Psychosomatic Medicine (PM) varies significantly between programs. In 1996, the Academy of Psychosomatic Medicine (APM) developed guidelines for residency training in PM. Since then, there has been no assessment of the status of PM training during psychiatry residency.

OBJECTIVE: Assessment of the current state of PM training in U.S. psychiatry residency programs.

METHOD: A 46-item questionnaire was sent via e-mail to 206 residency directors. Four major areas were assessed: the timing and duration of the PM rotation, level of faculty supervision, didactic curriculum, and role (or potential role) of the APM in residency education.

RESULTS: Ninety-two surveys were returned (response rate 45%). Forty-four (54%) of the general psychiatry residencies reported the total duration of the C-L rotation as being between 3 and 6 months (including both full- and part-time rotation). Only 38 (46%) programs' residents complete their PM experience in 1 year of residency. The average Full-Time Equivalent of teaching faculty per service was 1.74 (standard deviation 0.92). Sixty-four (77%) programs have a formal didactic curriculum in C-L. Eighty-one (98%) respondents were aware of the APM. Fifty-eight (70%) had APM members among faculty. The most popular responses on how the APM could best serve training programs were the creation of a subspecialty curriculum (73%) as well as the development of a competency-based evaluation tool (66%).

CONCLUSIONS: There is significant variation in how residents are taught PM during their training. The APM is a well-recognized organization that may define what constitutes adequate residency training in PM and may help programs fulfill the educational needs of residents.

Author List

Heinrich TW, Schwartz AC, Zimbrean PC, Wright MT, Academy of Psychosomatic Medicine's Residency Education Subcommittee


Thomas W. Heinrich MD Professor in the Psychiatry department at Medical College of Wisconsin

MESH terms used to index this publication - Major topics in bold

Education, Medical, Graduate
Guideline Adherence
Internship and Residency
Psychosomatic Medicine
Surveys and Questionnaires
United States