I have always been interested in healing and in understanding the mind. After graduating from Smith College with a B.A. in psychology, I attended medical school at Tufts University School of Medicine, and obtained my M.D. in 1995. I then completed my psychiatry residency at Harvard Medical School. Although I received broad training in psychiatry, I found the most satisfaction in direct patient care. My focus was in community mental health and in treating the severely mentally ill, a population that I felt was underserved. I spent most of my clinic hours during residency at the Massachusetts Mental Health Center and Boston Healthcare for the Homeless treating conditions such as bipolar illness, schizophrenia, and borderline personality disorder . In my chief residency year, I worked at the Harvard Program in Refugee Trauma caring for victims of war who suffered from PTSD and depression.
After completing my residency in 1999, I moved to the Sacramento area to raise a family. I worked at Kaiser Permanente for several years. Here, I became very proficient in the medication management of depression and anxiety disorders such as PTSD, OCD, and panic disorder by prescribing for a large caseload of patients.
In 2004 I left Kaiser to open my private practice. I held a busy practice for 5 years, but in 2009 I decided to take a sabbatical to devote time to my family. I maintained my clinical skills by completing my 10-year board re-certification and attending continuing medical education activities. I also worked as a peer reviewer on workers' compensation cases, gaining insight into the toll of stress, chronic pain and injury on the brain.
I am thrilled to have re-opened my practice as of October 2014, and I am looking forward to treating my clients with the most current knowledge in the field of mental health. I am excited that the medical field is in the midst of a revolution-- a paradigm shift away from a problem-specific disease model to a more integrative one as we begin to acknowledge how the mind, body, spirit and community all interact to affect our health. Rather than treating symptoms, we must focus on the root cause of illness. I have witnessed over my years of practice that although medications can be very powerful and beneficial, especially in the acute situation, they also have their limitations and that successful long-term treatment and healing must encompass a wider scope of treatment options.
My passion to find a more comprehensive approach to preventing and treating mental illness led me to pursue an additional 2-year fellowship training in integrative medicine at the Andrew Weil Center For Integrative Medicine at the University of Arizona. I am honored to be a part of the AWCIM graduating fellowship class of Fall 2018, under the direction of Dr. Andy Weil. Furthermore, I have continued mentorship under the fellowship's program director,
Dr. Ann Marie Chiassion in the area of spirituality & medicine. I am very excited to be able to bring this knowledge into my practice!