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Psychodyn Psychiatry. 2013 Mar;41(1):13-37. doi: 10.1521/pdps.2013.41.1.13.

Teaching all the evidence bases: reintegrating psychodynamic aspects of prescribing into psychopharmacology training.

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  • 1The Austen Riggs Center, Stockbridge, MA, USA.

Abstract

The discipline of psychiatry appears poised at the edge of a paradigm shift. Enthusiasm about psychopharmacological treatments and neuroscientific understandings is giving way to a sobering recognition of the limitations of current biologically oriented approaches. Psychiatry training programs have both an opportunity and a responsibility to address the challenges presented by the evidence. Although the average psychiatrist would profess a biopsychosocial ideal, an examination of our practice, journals, and training curricula suggests that we still have a long way to go before we employ a truly integrated model. There is a compelling, though oft-neglected evidence base demonstrating that pharmacologic treatment outcomes are as dependent on psychological and interpersonal factors as on medical ones. In order to maximize our usefulness to patients, psychiatry must embrace more complex and integrated understandings, transcending reductionistic models that promote mind-body splits. This article explores some of the costs of a model that places disproportionate emphasis on a biological framework. Relevant evidence bases are reviewed that demonstrate the utility of emphasizing the psychology of psychopharmacology. Implications for psychiatric training are considered, and suggestions are made for better integrating meaning factors into psychopharmacology education.

PMID:
23480158
DOI:
10.1521/pdps.2013.41.1.13
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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