Finding a Psychiatrist

  1. I'm a nurse and recently called a local psych hospital trying to find out which doc to mention to my PMD for a referral. I've had good luck in the past finding surgeons and an OB by just asking the nurse on duty, but they absolutely refused to give me any hints. Recommended their own outpatient clinic, but I'm looking for someone in private practice for confidentiality reasons.

    How can I find out which doc has a particular interest in my diagnosis (depression) and is good at what he/she does? My PMD is not particularly up to date on psych issues and may just refer me to someone because she's heard of them. I don't want to go to someone with, say, schizophrenia, as their most frequently seen patient.
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  2. 5 Comments

  3. by   CharlieRN
    Dear B
    If your Dx is depression then most any psych treatment provider will probably do a good job. Depression is the "common cold" of psychiatry.

    I have a few hints I would suggest to you. Ask about the practioner's work history. Avoid those who have gone directly from school to private practice. I would look for at least a couple of years working in a good sized psych institution. Schools generally do not screen their graduates for mental health. The clinical staff of a competent psych institution will screen each other.

    Your treatment should follow approximately this pattern : An interview to determin your diagnosis and level of safety. A prescription for one or more antidepressents, possibly an anti anxiety agent or an antipsychotic. Your doc will need to rule out bipolar disorder, so he/she may order mood stablizer meds. You also should have weekly or bi weekly meetings with a talk therapist of some type. In my area this is usually not your psychiatrist but someone he works with. You will meet with your psychiatrist every month or two, and your therapist anywhere from twice a week to once every two weeks.
    If you need more than that, or if you are a danger to yourself, you should at least consider inpatient treatment.
  4. by   Psychaprn
    Quote from beesnest
    I'm a nurse and recently called a local psych hospital trying to find out which doc to mention to my PMD for a referral. I've had good luck in the past finding surgeons and an OB by just asking the nurse on duty, but they absolutely refused to give me any hints. Recommended their own outpatient clinic, but I'm looking for someone in private practice for confidentiality reasons.

    How can I find out which doc has a particular interest in my diagnosis (depression) and is good at what he/she does? My PMD is not particularly up to date on psych issues and may just refer me to someone because she's heard of them. I don't want to go to someone with, say, schizophrenia, as their most frequently seen patient.
    Hi-have yuou considered an APRN in Psych.? My patients tell me they find them more accessible, friendlier and are pleased with their holistic approach. Many Psych. APRNs do Psychotherapy in conjunction with medication. Most have had extensive experience in working with depressed people. Good luck in your search.
  5. by   ARNPsomeday
    Quote from Psychaprn
    Hi-have yuou considered an APRN in Psych.? My patients tell me they find them more accessible, friendlier and are pleased with their holistic approach. Many Psych. APRNs do Psychotherapy in conjunction with medication. Most have had extensive experience in working with depressed people. Good luck in your search.
    This is precisely one of the reasons I am working toward becoming a psychiatric APRN.

    Some pschychiatric MDs are, sorry to say, mere "brain chemists".

    By the way, Psychaprn, is it advanced practice registered nurse, or advanced registered nurse practioner? I seem to have gotten it wrong in my handle. :imbar
    Last edit by ARNPsomeday on Apr 13, '05
  6. by   StuPer
    Some excellent advice already offered, I just have to say that the best-evidence based treatment for depression is an antidepressant and CBT, thses 2 treatments are shown to be equally effective and combining both helps the most. I dont know how easy/hard it will be to find a therapist, but incase you run into problems you could try online CBT, the national australian university runs a free service and can be found at http://moodgym.anu.edu.au/ it is also anonymous.
    regards StuPer
  7. by   Psychaprn
    Quote from ARNPsomeday
    This is precisely one of the reasons I am working toward becoming a psychiatric APRN.

    Some pschychiatric MDs are, sorry to say, mere "brain chemists".

    By the way, Psychaprn, is it advanced practice registered nurse, or advanced registered nurse practioner? I seem to have gotten it wrong in my handle. :imbar
    It may be different in your state. I'm an APRN , BC in Ct.-( Advanced Practice Registered Nurse, Board Certified) but I've seen APN, ARNP, NP etc. Check with the Dept. of Hdealth or one of your faculty. Good luck to you-Ii can tell you the autonomy and opportunuties are great and we need more of us!

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