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Karl Menninger, MD Plenary: Child and Adolescent Psychiatry in the Era of Healthcare Reform

Gregory K. Fritz, MD, AACAP President-Elect (2013-2015), is Professor, Director of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, and Vice Chair in the Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior at the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University. He is also the Academic Director at the E.P. Bradley Hospital and Associate Chief of Psychiatry at Rhode Island Hospital/Hasbro Children’s Hospital. Following graduation from Tufts Medical School, he did his general psychiatry residency in San Mateo, CA and child psychiatry training and a research fellowship at Stanford. He directed the pediatric consultation-liaison service at Stanford until he moved to Brown in the 1980s, where he has worked ever since.

Dr. Fritz chaired several committees in the AACAP and was elected Councilor-at-Large and Secretary  prior to becoming President-Elect. He served as President of the Society of Professors of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and of the International Society for the Advancement of Respiratory Psychophysiology. He has also been involved in the work of the Academy of Psychosomatic Medicine and the American Psychiatric Association, where he is a Distinguished Life Fellow.

Dr. Fritz has received grant support from the National Institute of Mental Health and the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute for his research on mind-body interactions in chronic pediatric illness. He has published extensively on the psychophysiology of respiration, perception of physical symptoms, and minority disparities in pediatric asthma. He was the recipient of the AACAP Simon Wile Award for Leadership in Consultation Liaison Psychiatry and the AACAP Irving Phillips Award for Prevention.

In his inaugural address, “Child and Adolescent Psychiatry in the Era of Healthcare Reform,” Dr. Fritz focuses on the opportunities for improving the mental healthcare of children in this period of rapid change. He sees research as key, lest anecdotes and individual preferences fill the void where empirical evidence should be. “Small r” research projects gain in importance as NIH and industry support contract. Dr. Fritz sees the reduction in the stigma of mental illness as an important factor behind much of the progress in child psychiatry in the past decade, while residual stigma remains our greatest obstacle. The movement toward integrating mental health and primary medical care, which Dr. Fritz has chosen as his presidential initiative, is both a reflection of our progress and a means to greatly expand children’s access to mental healthcare.

In his presidential initiative, Dr. Fritz places a high priority on education – training primary care providers in basic psychiatric content as well as educating child psychiatrists to be effective consultants and collaborators in the integrated care setting. He emphasizes the need for empirical evidence of improved outcomes and/or cost savings if integrated care is ever to be widely applied and for advocacy to remove the many administrative and financial barriers that currently exist. He underlines the need for a new level of collaboration with pediatricians and other primary care providers and with psychologists and other mental healthcare professionals.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015: 4:15 PM-6:00 PM

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