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Postdoctoral Fellowship:
Psychiatry - Primary Care Former Fellows

Larry Li, M.D., MPH, 1988-90, is a family physician, and was recruited as an Assistant Professor at the University of Utah Department of Family Medicine. Dr. Li is a first generation Chinese-American physician who has had a long-term interest in improving medical care among the medically under-served. He worked in the Indian Health Service for five years as a family physician prior to the fellowship. He has been Principal Investigator on several grants, including an Agency for Health Care Policy and Research (AHCPR) grant to study, “Influences on Practice Among the Under-Served,” as well as was a Co-Principal Investigator on a grant from the Public Health Service entitled, “The Evaluation and Enhancement of Primary Care Research in Community, Migrant and Homeless Health Centers.”

Robert Ferrer, MD, MPH, 1989-91 initially accepted a position as Assistant Professor at the University of Maryland Department of Family Medicine and is currently an Associate Professor, Deputy Chair and Director of Research in the Department of Family and Community Medicine at the University of Texas at San Antonio. His thesis explained differences in treatment patterns of primary care physicians and mental health providers in the care of mental illness.

Michael Clark, MD, MPH, 1990-92: Following his fellowship, Dr. Clark accepted a position as Assistant Professor and Director of both the Consultation-Liaison Psychiatry Service and the Pain Clinic at Johns Hopkins. He is now Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences and Director of a chronic pain treatment program at Johns Hopkins. He studied the medical and psychiatric disorders associated with chief complaints of dizziness and chronic fatigue while at the University of Washington. He is a co-investigator on several NIMH-sponsored grants exploring pain control in patients with neuropathies and continues to have a strong research interest and publication record in studying common primary care complaints such as dizziness.

Karina Uldall, MD, MPH, 1991-93, is an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Director of the HIV/AIDS Research Program at the University of Washington. In 2005, she received two large federal grants from HRSA (Special Projects of National Significance/Integrated Service Delivery Models) to improve the education of professionals regarding HIV and a 5-year grant from SAMSHA entitled, "HIV/AIDS Treatment Adherence, Health Outcomes and Cost-Study."

Karl Weyrauch, MD, MPH, 1992-94, is a clinician at the Group Health Cooperative Northgate clinic. He has published extensively on the importance of continuity of the doctor/patient relationship and received a grant in 1996 from Group Health to study “Physician specific satisfaction and continuity of HMO care.”

Charles Engel, MD, MPH, 1992-94, is Director of the Department of Defense (DoD) Deployment Health Clinical Center at Walter Reed Hospital in Washington, D.C. and and is an Associate Professor and Assistant Chair in the Department of Psychiatry at the Uniformed Services University of Health. His research in the Fellowship was on “Predictors of High Utilization and Medical Costs Among Primary Care Patients with Back Pain”. He continues to have a strong interest in medically unexplained symptoms in primary care. He is currently a principal investigator on a $9 million, multisite VAH grant entitled, "A Randomized Multi-Center Controlled Trial of Multimodal Therapy in Veterans with Gulf War Illness" and a second $12 million VAH grant entitled, "Antibiotic Treatment of Gulf War Veterans Illness."

Jesse Fann, MD, MPH, 1993-95, is an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Washington and Director of the Psychiatry Consultation Service at the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance. Dr. Fann is Principal Investigator of two federally-funded grants focused on studying the effects of telephone-based and in-person cognitive behavioral therapy for major depression following moderate to severe traumatic brain injury. He is also Co-Principal Investigator on an NIH grant testing antidepressant treatment efficacy in rehabilitation patients with head injury. His thesis project "Psychiatric disorders and functional disability in outpatients with traumatic brain injuries" was published in the American Journal of Psychiatry (1995).

Jürgen Unützer, MD, MA, MPH, 1994-96, is an internationally recognized mental health services researcher who has worked with a number of health care organizations as well as national and international organizations to improve care for common mental disorders such as depression and bipolar disorder. His most recent research focuses on improving primary care for older adults with depression and chronic pain. He was the Principal Investigator of Project IMPACT, a multi-site initiative to develop a new model of care for late-life depression (http://impact-uw.org). Project IMPACT, the largest treatment trial for late-life depression to date, was funded by the John A. Hartford Foundation and the California HealthCare Foundation. This study, which was published in JAMA, concluded that the IMPACT model doubles the effectiveness of usual care for late-life depression across a wide range of health care organizations. Dr. Unützer received his MD from Vanderbilt University, his MA in Public Policy from the University of Chicago, and his MPH in Health Services from the University of Washington. He also completed fellowships in Geriatric Psychiatry at UCLA and in Primary Care Psychiatry at the University of Washington.

Tom Zaubler, M.D., M.P.H.,1995-97, initially accepted a position as Assistant Professor and Director of Residency Training at Georgetown University Department of Psychiatry. He is currently Chairman of the Department of Psychiatry at Morristown Medical Center in New Jersey with an appointment in the Robert Wood Johnson School of Medicine. Dr. Zaubler completed a research project at the University of Washington on the psychosocial distress and psychiatric disorders associated with patients who present to family medicine with a chief complaint of headache. He also completed a research project that became his Masters Thesis on “Delirium and Competency to Consent in Bone Marrow Transplantation.”

Megan Dwight-Johnson, MD, MPH,1996-98, is an Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Washington. Dr. Dwight-Johnson completed a research project and her thesis at the University of Washington on the impact of depression on symptom burden and functional impairment in patients with hepatitis C. She is currently involved in research to improve outcomes of depression in low income Hispanic primary care populations by developing tailored collaborative treatment interventions that address the preferences, needs, and resources of patients, primary care providers and administrators in public sector primary care.

Paul Ciechanowski, M.D., M.P.H., 1997-99, is an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Washington Medical School. He directs the psychiatry consultation service and has a psychiatry liaison with the diabetes clinic. His thesis project, entitled, "The Patient-Provider Relationship: Attachment Theory and Adherence to Treatment in Diabetes," was published in the American Journal of Psychiatry (2001). He is Principal Investigator on a Centers for Disease Control study testing a collaborative care treatment for depression among adults with epilepsy and Co-Investigator on 2 large, randomized trials designed to evaluate treatment programs for patients with diabetes and depression. In 2002, he received a K-Award from NIDDK to continue his research on improving adherence in patients with diabetes.

Andrew Elliott, M.D., M.P.H., 1998-00: Upon completing his fellowship, Dr. Elliott was appointed as an Assistant Professor on the Harborview Hospital campus of the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Washington Medical School as well as was Director of Harborview's Psychiatric Consultation Service and the HIV Clinic's outpatient psychiatric service. Dr. Elliott's research in the fellowship was on "Characteristics of HIV-Infected Psychiatric Patients and the Impact of Highly Active Antiretroviral Therapy." He is currently in private practice in Palm Springs, CA.

Lydia Chwastiak, M.D., M.P.H., 1999-01, initially accepted an appointment as an Assistant Professor on the Harborview Hospital campus of the Department of Psychiatry at University of Washington Medical School and is currently an Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at Yale University. Dr. Chwastiak is double-boarded in Internal Medicine and Psychiatry. She completed two major research projects during her fellowship. The first project, funded by the World Health Organization, was entitled "Disability in Depression and Back Pain: Evaluation of the WHO DAS II in a Primary Care Setting" and compared the sensitivity to change of 3 measures of functional impairment in primary care patients with major depression and back pain. Dr. Chwastiak became a co-investigator on an NIH-funded Multiple Sclerosis Center grant at University of Washington and completed a large epidemiologic study of the impact of depression on symptom burden and functional impairment in patients with multiple sclerosis that was published in the American Journal of Psychiatry (2002). She recently received an NIMH K-23 Mentored Scientist Award.

Rosemary Kelly, M.D., M.P.H., 2000-03, graduated from the program in 3 years rather than 2 years due to having a second baby during the fellowship. She is currently Clinical Instructor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the University of Washington Medical School. She has written her masters thesis and published a lead article in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology (2002) on a study from a database of over 500,000 live births in California. Dr. Kelly showed in this study that having a mental health diagnosis or substance abuse diagnosis each independently raised the risk of having very low birth weight infant or preterm labor by three-fold.

Gwen Glew, M.D., M.P.H., 2001-04, completed a second fellowship in the Department of Pediatrics at the Center on Human Development and Disability at the University of Washington and has accepted an appointment as Assistant Professor in the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Washington. During her NRSA fellowship from 2001-04, Dr. Glew studied the prevalence of bullying in a sample of children and adolescents enrolled in a pediatrics clinic and found that children and adolescents exposed to bullying were significantly more likely to have multiple physical complaints (i.e. headache, abdominal pain) and to have higher levels of anxiety and depression. She also collaborated with the Seattle School District to include a section of questions on bullying that was part of an annual questionnaire sent to all adolescents and children in the Seattle School District. She published the results of this second study in the Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine in 2005.

Susan Bentley, D.O., 2003-05, is an Acting Assistant Professor in the Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences Department at the University of Washington and an attending psychiatrist at Harborview Medical Center. During her fellowship, Dr. Bentley helped Dr. Jennifer Melville develop a depression/substance abuse registry for women beginning care in the University of Washington high-risk obstetrics clinic. This registry included evidence-based tools to measure depression and anxiety disorders (Patient Health Questionnaire) and smoking and substance abuse. Dr. Bentley also worked with Dr. David Grembowski on a secondary analysis of a large data set which aimed to determine the effect of comorbid pain in depressed patients on mental health referral and outcomes of depression. Her third project was collaborating with Dr. Mark Sullivan (PI) on a "proof of concept" study to determine if antidepressant medications could be an effective treatment for osteoarthritis pain.

Shereen Morse, M.D., M.P.H., 2004-06, had a research interest in binge eating and collaborated with Dr. Paul Ciechanowski, a psychiatrist with a long-term interest in how psychiatric illness and maladaptive attachment influences outcomes in diabetes. Dr. Morse has completed a paper with Drs. Ciechanowski and Katon, which was published in Diabetes Care in 2006. The paper described the prevalence of night eating syndrome and the association of this disorder with poor adherence to diabetes regimens and adverse diabetes outcomes in approximately 800 patients treated in the UW Diabetes Care Center.

Carol Rockhill, M.D., M.P.H., 2005-07, is a child psychiatrist with a long-term interest in maladaptive interpersonal interactions of youth with depression as well as the prevalence and adverse impact of anxiety and depression comorbidity in youth with chronic medical disorders. Dr. Rockhill published 1 article during her fellowship and wrote 4 others that are currently in press or under review in peer-reviewed scientific journals. She completed her thesis on social support and social skills as mediators of functional outcomes in youth with depression and conduct disorders. Following her fellowship, Dr. Rockhill was appointed Assistant Professor in the Child Psychiatry Division of the Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences Department at the University of Washington.

Alex Thompson, M.D, M.P.H., 2006-08, is Medical Director of Inpatient Psychiatry at Texas A&M Health Science Center in Temple, TX.  His research focused on the interface of neurology and psychiatry. Dr. Thompson is also collaborating with Dr. Jürgen Unützer in the dissemination of collaborative care to primary care clinics that care for populations living below poverty levels who receive state aid.

Jennifer Brennan-Braden, M.D., M.P.H., 2007-09, is an adult psychiatrist at Valley Medical Center in Renton, WA, with a longterm interest in the relationship of chronic pain and psychiatric disorders.  During her fellowship,
Dr. Braden collaborated with both Drs. Mark Sullivan and Michael Von Korff (an epidemiologist at the Center for Health Studies at Group Health) on several NIMH funded grants.  In collaboration with her mentor, Dr. Sullivan, she has published 8 articles in peer-reviewed journals on psychiatric aspects of chronic pain, two for which she was first-author. 

Kym Ahrens, M.D., M.P.H., 2008-10, is an Assistant Professor in the Division of Adolescent Medicine in the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Washington. Dr. Ahrens has had a long-term research interest in improving the psychological and physical health care of foster children as well as the beneficial role of adult mentoring relationships with foster youth.  In 2010, she was awarded a 2-year grant from the Center for AIDS Research, entitled “Using Attachment Theory to Understand the HIV/STI Risk of Youth in Foster Care,” that aims to develop and test an intervention to decrease the high-risk sexual behaviors in foster youth.  She also received an NIMH K-23 award in 2010, entitled “Developing an HIV/STI Intervention for Foster Youth Using Attachment Theory” that will allow her to develop interventions to decrease the risk of sexually transmitted diseases in foster youth.

 



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