Program Development Award
UT Southwestern Outpatient Psychiatry Multi-Specialty Program
Professor of Psychiatry
Peter O’Donnell Jr. Brain Institute
In the last three years, the Outpatient Psychiatry Multi-Specialty Program at UT Southwestern has undergone an incredible expansion and complete transformation to respond more fully to the demand for psychiatric services within the Medical Center and among the community at large. The results have been nothing short of staggering.
Prior to 2016, the psychiatry outpatient program treated fewer than 800 patients per year and offered mostly general psychiatric care.
Now, specialty treatments for all major psychiatric disorders are located together, creating a “one-stop shop” to better meet the needs of all patients. In fiscal year 2019 alone, the program treated more than 9,000 patients, including more than 5,000 new patients, and completed more than 43,000 outpatient visits at its Dallas and Richardson sites. Average new patient wait times are only 14 days.
During this time, the program, under the direction of Dr. Ibrahim Department Vice Chair for Clinical Affairs, and Medical Director Dr. Larry Thornton, has developed a regional reputation for treating the most complicated psychiatric conditions and cases. It has also incorporated state-of-the-art and experimental techniques, such as transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) and magnetic seizure therapy (MST). In addition, UT Southwestern is one of the first programs in the nation, particularly in academic settings, to implement measurement-based care. This data-based advancement has already resulted in better care, including improved safety for patients.
The program now offers telehealth, allowing patients to receive treatment in their homes. And its Psychiatry Medicine Integration team has embedded behavioral specialists in non-psychiatric clinical settings to improve interdepartmental collaboration and patient outcomes.
In his words: “Our team is truly honored to receive such terrific recognition. The success of our multidisciplinary program has been made possible by the sum of all the individual efforts of our faculty and staff. Their hard work, dedication to patient care, collaboration, support of each other, and endorsement of our tripartite mission have been inspirational. In addition, our program could not have existed without the unwavering support of our UTSW leadership, which allowed us to grow and provide our patients with much-needed services. Together, we will continue to strive for excellence, the UTSW way!”