Being a psychiatrist and providing care for individuals with serious mental illness (SMI) in rural settings has many challenges. In addition to lack of some more robust services (such as coordinated specialty care) and travel distance to care, other challenges exist for a psychiatrist in working in these settings. There may be challenges such as feeling isolated from peers, sparse opportunities for educational events, difficulty with access to REM pharmacies for clozapine or other medications and lack of anonymity in the community to name a few.
This presentation will be provided by a psychiatrist who has worked in rural settings over her 30-year career starting with the Indian Health Service in remote area on the Navajo Reservation and then in rural Colorado as the Medical Director of a community mental health center. She will share her experiences, how they pushed the borders of her comfort zone at times, and how she overcame some of the challenges of working in these settings.
The presentation will look at ways to provide educational opportunities utilizing technology advances such as eConsult and Project ECHO (Extension of Community Healthcare Outcomes) which includes an educational component, opportunities for case presentations and the development of a telementoring community of colleagues.