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Grady Health System

The Grady Health System, the primary teaching facility of the Emory University School of Medicine, is a Level 1 Trauma Hospital that serves a primarily inner-city, minority, and low income population from metropolitan Atlanta and Fulton and DeKalb Counties. The Grady Health System includes a general hospital (the largest in Georgia and among the largest in the country), as well as multiple outpatient clinics. Professional services at Grady Health System are provided under contract with Emory University School of Medicine and Morehouse School of Medicine, so that the hospital is a teaching hospital. Grady is involved in training for all the behavioral health disciplines: psychology, psychiatry, social work, nursing, occupational and recreational therapy. Thus, there are many opportunities to engage in interdisciplinary seminars and treatment programs. Emory University is located approximately 15 minutes driving time from Grady Health System. The psychology faculty includes 9 full-time licensed psychologists, 2 licensed psychologists who are based largely at Emory Healthcare but also provide training at Grady Health System, and one part-time licensed clinical psychologist who is based in the School of Public Health. In addition, there is an American Psychological Association accredited internship training program based at Grady Health System, which received initial accreditation in 1980, and was fully re-accredited in 1986, 1991, 1996, 2001, 2007, and 2014. The internship program also includes positions at the Center for Rehabilitation Medicine/Division of Neuropsychology.

Adults with Serious Psychiatric Disorders. The following half-time positions (pending funding) can be combined with other half-time positions at Grady Health System, for the equivalent of one full-time position. There will be the equivalent of 1-2 full-time positions devoted to work with adults with serious psychiatric disorders. Half-time primarily clinical positions are available in the (1) Grady Outpatient Services, which provides comprehensive biopsychosocial and diagnostic assessments, treatment plans, and brief, goal-oriented individual therapy for adult outpatients; (2) Adult Day Treatment Psychosocial Rehabilitation Program, which offers psychosocial rehabilitation services for adults living in the community; (3) Adult Inpatient Milieu Unit, which offers comprehensive short-term inpatient care for adults with serious and persistent mental illness; and (4) Inpatient Crisis Stabilization Unit, which offers stabilization and brief treatment for adults in acute psychiatric distress. Responsibilities for the positions devoted to work with individuals with serious mental illness include psychological assessments, treatment planning, interventions (individual, group, couples/family), crisis management, interdisciplinary consultation, clinical-research, clinical administration, supervision and teaching, and program development and evaluation. Postdoctoral residents in each of these positions also need to spend ½ day per week conducting comprehensive behavioral health biopsychosocial and diagnostic assessments for consumers who present to the Grady Intake Clinic and helping develop appropriate treatment plans for these consumers. Research is ongoing in a number of areas including: suicide, intimate partner violence, schizophrenia and substance abuse, psychosocial rehabilitation-program evaluation, interactions between PTSD and serious mental illnesses, efficacy of short-term inpatient and outpatient/community interventions, and neuropsychological correlates of psychiatric conditions.

Suicide Prevention Clinical Research. This one year half-time clinical-research position entails involvement on a clinical-research project focused on a group intervention for preventing suicidal behavior in African American women and men (Grady Nia Project, Grady Compassion and Meditation Program). The resident is a member of an interdisciplinary research team and is expected to take a leadership role in the research efforts of the team (e.g., program implementation, community outreach, supervising/training, data analysis, manuscript preparation, grant writing, etc.). The person will also be involved in the conduct of group, individual, and family interventions for suicidal African American women and men. This person will also aid in the recruitment of study participants, which includes community outreach efforts.

Program Evaluation in Youth Suicide Prevention. This one year half-time research position entails involvement in evaluating the outcomes of a SAMSHA funded grant entitled Georgia Suicide Safer Communities for Youth. Guided by the National Strategy for Suicide Prevention and the Zero Suicide Initiative, the main objectives of the grant are to decrease suicidal attempts and deaths in youth. Through training, outreach, and implementation of evidence-based practices, the project builds infrastructure and increases the suicide specific continuum of care among youth ages 10-24 in three targeted Georgia counties with suicide death rates higher than the national average. The fellow will be expected to take a leadership role in the evaluation efforts of the project team to develop, implement, and monitor effective programs that promote wellness and prevent suicide related behaviors. The fellow will also be involved in evaluation of the project implementation and services, data collection/analyses, tracking, and manuscript preparation. The fellow will be expected to participate in SAMHSA training efforts for Garrett Lee Smith Youth Suicide Prevention Grantees Cohort 10. Travel to project sites and conferences may be required periodically. Additional opportunities to conduct research and publish results on suicidal behaviors and other associated topics will also be available. The ideal candidate for this position will have experience with program implementation/evaluation and be proficient in data analyses. Moreover, candidates should demonstrate excellent written and verbal communication skills, with a proven publication record of successful research, preferably in suicide prevention.

Pediatric Infectious Disease Program. This one year full time position is available in the Pediatric Infectious Disease Clinic at Grady Health System. Approximately half of the postdoctoral resident's time will be spent providing direct psychotherapeutic assessment, intervention, and consultation to children, adolescents, and young adults living with HIV/AIDS and the other half of their time will be spent working as a project coordinator on a Peer Mentoring Clinical Research Project testing the efficacy of a peer mentoring program for young adults living with HIV/AIDS. The postdoctoral resident is a member of an interdisciplinary medical and research team and is expected to take a leadership role in the efforts of both teams. The resident will conduct clinical assessments, psychotherapeutic interventions and clinical consultations as referred by the interdisciplinary medical team. Additional duties also include providing case management services and supervision for junior colleagues. For the research portion of the residency, the postdoctoral resident will engage in program implementation, community outreach, supervising/training, data analysis, and manuscript preparation. This person will also aid in the recruitment of study participants, which includes community outreach efforts.

Open Dialogue Atlanta. This is a one year, half time post-doctoral position focused on a psychosocial intervention for individuals experiencing first-episode psychosis. Open Dialogue is an approach to acute psychiatric crises developed by Jaakko Seikkula, Birgitta Alakare, Jukka Aaltonen and their multi-disciplinary team at Keropudas Hospital in Tornio, Finland. This psychosocial intervention has two components: (1) a community-based, integrated treatment system that engages families and social networks as creative partners in the recovery process, and (2) a distinct and unique form of dialogues within open psychiatric meetings. The approach has been effective in reducing symptoms of psychosis, leading to fewer and shorter hospitalizations, reduced neuroleptic medication dosage, greater improvements in functioning and improved likelihood of employment. Open Dialogue has been studied in Europe, and we, in addition to the University of Massachusetts, are some of the pioneers bringing it to the United States. The postdoctoral resident will participate in training activities to learn Dialogic Practice and provide direct clinical service to individuals and families in crisis. Additionally, for the research component, the postdoctoral resident will engage in program implementation, community outreach, data analysis, and manuscript preparation.

Forensic Psychology. Two full time positions will be available in forensic psychology. The postdoctoral resident will be involved in work that focuses on competency restoration of defendants in criminal cases. This novel program is designed to rapidly treat defendants found incompetent to stand trial without transferring them from a county jail to a psychiatric facility. Training experiences include forensic assessment, intervention, and research related to competency restoration. In addition, the resident will participate in a weekly forensic seminar with forensic psychiatry residents. Other rotations include the following:

  • Georgia Regional Hospital in Atlanta: Forensic psychologists and psychiatrists provide evaluations and treatment for men and women who require an inpatient setting. Residents conduct 90-day competency to stand trial and violence risk assessments, as well as outpatient forensic evaluations with juveniles.
  • Private practice: Residents work on federal mitigation evaluations with an experienced forensic psychologist in private practice, as well as receive supervision focused on expert testimony, malingering assessments, and professional development.
  • Atlanta Veterans Affairs Medical Center: Residents conduct compensation and pension evaluations of veterans under the supervision of forensically trained psychologist who specializes in disability evaluations.
  • Private practice: Residents have the opportunity to conduct sex psychosexual evaluations with individuals who trained under Dr. Gene Abel.