All fellows will spend 25 percent of their time in clinical activities within one of several mental health clinics at MEDVAMC. Their assignment will be determined by the fellow’s interest and with the input of the Internal Review Committee and the fellow’s mentors. Regardless of discipline, fellows will be assured of discipline-specific supervision. In addition, fellows will be given an opportunity to participate in the clinical teaching of other trainees.
- General Mental Health Care (GMHC) (Director: Robert Garza, M.D.)
- Trauma Recovery Program (TRP) (Director: Karin Thompson, Ph.D.)
- Substance Dependence Treatment Program (SDTP) (Director: Jill McGavin, Ph.D.; Research Director: Thomas Kosten, M.D.)
- In-Patient (Director: Wendy Leopoulos, M.D.)
- Health Care for Homeless Veterans (HCHV) (Director: Luis Paulino)
- Consultation & Special Evaluation (CASE) (Director: Candy Smith, Ph.D.)
- Community Re-Integration (Director: Su Bailey, Ph.D.)
All of these clinics function through an interdisciplinary team approach. MEDVAMC is a major training site for BCM residents, medical students, and physician assistant students, as well as psychology interns, psychology practicum students, social work students, and nursing students. Involvement of trainees in the therapeutic activities of the clinics is a highly valued activity by staff members. Trainees will have a multitude of training activities available to them, depending on their interest and training needs. Fellows can function within interdisciplinary teams, gain experience in clinical settings with varying levels of treatment intensity, provide individual and group therapies, learn specialized assessment techniques, and provide medication management. Fellows will also have the opportunity to be involved in the myriad of clinical educational programs available in the Texas Medical Center (e.g., BCM Psychiatry Grand Rounds, continuing education conferences, monthly MEDVAMC Mental Health Conference, brain dissection rounds, and psychology assessment and therapy seminars).
Brief Description of Programs
General Mental Health Care (GMHC) (Director: Robert Garza, M.D.)
This program provides ongoing care in both inpatient and outpatient settings to veterans who have severe and persistent mental illness, including schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and other related disorders.
GMHC offers a wide array of services: acute inpatient care; outpatient medication management and supportive therapy; specialized group therapy for veterans with mood disorders, psychotic disorders, traumatic brain injury; social services; geriatric psychiatry; family treatment for all veterans enrolled in the program; and intensive case management for the most seriously mentally ill.
Trauma Recovery Program (TRP) (Director: Karin Thompson, Ph.D.)
Recognizing the special risk of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and related illnesses in the veteran population, this program has a broad range of outpatient, day hospital, and acute inpatient services available for veterans suffering from PTSD and other anxiety disorders. Program staff members work closely with the two Veterans Outreach Centers in Houston.
Substance Dependence Treatment Program (SDTP) (Director: Jill McGavin, Ph.D.; Research Director: Thomas Kosten, M.D.)
This program offers three levels of care for drug and alcohol use disorders, inpatient and outpatient detoxification, and opiate replacement treatment. The clinic is open 6 a.m. to 8 p.m., and patients are enrolled immediately upon application. Staff works as a team to provide individualized treatment to the recovering veteran.