Our Pathbreaking Work and Tradition of Service

D. Ziedonis, MD, MPHWith our clinical work, education programs and world-class research on the nature and causes of mental illness – from addiction and schizophrenia to autism spectrum disorders – the UMass Department of Psychiatry is helping individuals and families transform their lives. We are proud of our accomplishments and pleased to be a part of the nationally ranked University of Massachusetts Medical School and UMass Memorial Health Care system.

  • The department's "bench to bedside" and "bedside to community" research focuses on treatment and prevention.
  • Our training programs and approach to mentoring promote excellence in teaching for future mental health care practitioners.
  • Our products and services reach across the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and, now, are found in numerous sites internationally.
  • Our more than 300 faculty and 2,000 staff members work in many settings within the Medical School and UMass Memorial Health Care, the public sector, and the community at large.

Douglas M. Ziedonis MD, MPH
Chairman, Dept. of Psychiatry

Latest Psychiatry Department News

2015 Central Massachusetts Regional Brain Bee
The Brain Bee is a nationwide program created by the Society for Neuroscience to bolster high school student interest in medical and laboratory neuroscience careers.  It’s like a spelling bee, but for neuroscience facts! Massachusetts high school students compete for the opportunity to represent our region in the U.S. National Brain Bee. Registration for the February 7, 2015, event, hosted by the UMass Department of Psychiatry, is now open. Get details here.
Special K, a Hallucinogen, Raises Hopes and Concerns as a Treatment for Depression
It is either the most exciting new treatment for depression in years or it is a hallucinogenic club drug that is wrongly being dispensed to desperate patients in a growing number of clinics around the country. "We don't know what the long-term side effects of this are," said Dr. Anthony J. Rothschild.  Read the story in The New York Times.
Dr. Tom Grisso Psychiatry Research Day 2014 – 'When Science Meets Practice: Integration of Forensic Mental Health in the Justice System" – Oct. 29, 2014. This year's Research Day celebrated the evolution and impact of the field of Law & Psychiatry, in which our faculty are and have been national leaders for more than three decades. The program paid special tribute to one of our most esteemed and beloved faculty members, Dr. Thomas Grisso, who is internationally recognized as not only one of the founders, but the single most influential researcher in this field in the past 30 years. View the Research Day Video Tribute to Tom Grisso here.

More in the news...

Spotlight

Can a genetic test help predict which antidepressant will be most effective?

Clinical trial seeks to reduce trial-and-error prescribing for patients with depression. 

Rothschild

By Sandra Gray
UMass Medical School Communications
Depression is the most commonly diagnosed mental illness, and antidepressants are the most frequently prescribed treatments for it. But with dozens of medications to choose from, and with individuals responding better to some drugs than to others—possibly due to genetic differences that affect how the medications are metabolized and how they act on the brain—patients must often try several medications before finding one that is most effective.

"It's a lot of trial and error even for those of us who are experts, and most antidepressants are prescribed by primary care physicians, not psychiatrists," said UMass Medical School psychiatrist Anthony Rothschild, MD, the Irving S. and Betty Brudnick Chair in Psychiatry, professor of psychiatry and director of the Center for Psychopharmacologic Research and Treatment at UMMS.
Read more...