Fellowships, Residencies & CME

Forensic Psychiatry Fellowship

The Harvard Forensic Psychiatry Fellowship is a one-year, full-time ACGME-approved training program based at the Massachusetts General Hospital. The fellowship is designed to provide comprehensive training in forensic psychiatry, drawing on multiple clinical sites, a large-multi-disciplinary teaching faculty; and a vast array of academic opportunities within the Harvard system.

The fellow will provide episodic consultation to the psychiatric inpatient service at MGH under the primary supervision of Dr. Ronald Schouten, Dr. Marilyn Price, and Dr. Jose Hidalgo.

The didactic curriculum provides a comprehensive overview of adult and child forensic topics and landmark cases in psychiatry and the law. The fellow will attend the year-long weekly seminars, sponsored and taught by the LPS faculty. The fellow will participate in the regularly scheduled scholarly activities of the LPS, including Recent Court Decisions Seminar and Case Conference. The fellow will be expected to present at each of these conferences and will give two lectures during the seminar series. The fellow is invited to attend special courses offered to staff and trainees in the LPS, including courses on forensic psychological testing and the evaluation of sexual abuse. The fellow will also attend weekly Department of Psychiatry Grand Rounds presentations and is invited to attend teaching seminars and courses offered to staff and trainees in the Department of Psychiatry at MGH.

In addition to court exposure through cases in the fellowship, the fellow will participate in two mock trial/expert witness exercises. The first, in September or January, will take place at the Harvard Law School. The second is scheduled in June at the Boston Juvenile Court. The fellow is expected to teach and supervise house-staff when called for forensic consultation at MGH.

Supervision is extensive, and provided by senior LPS staff, which includes psychiatrists and psychologists. In addition to the supervision noted above, the fellow will meet weekly with Dr. Schouten, the fellowship director and Director of LPS, to discuss ongoing cases, the fellow’s progress, and career goals. Dr. Schouten will also provide informal feedback during these meetings regarding the fellow’s performance, as reported by supervisors. Twice yearly, the director will solicit written evaluations from the supervisors and will review these formally with the fellow. At these times, the director will also solicit written evaluations from the fellow regarding supervision and clinical rotations. The results of these evaluations will be communicated to the various supervisors and any necessary adjustments will be made. The director will maintain a file for each fellow.

Dr. Ronald Schouten, a full-time forensic psychiatrist trained in both law and psychiatry, directs the LPS and the fellowship. Dr. Schouten is also an Associate Professor at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Marilyn Price is a forensic psychiatrist with extensive experience in malpractice disability, and criminal matters. Dr. Jose Hidalgo has co-authored an article with Dr. Schouten, is currently-co-editing a previously authored chapter by Dr. Schouten, and is developing a research project on measuring coercion in human trafficking cases.

The selection process follows a written protocol, adhering to ACGME and AAPL guidelines. Dr. Schouten oversees the affiliation agreements with non-MGH facilities and keeps written copies of these agreements, which are renewed annually.

The fellow has no admitting privileges. There is no weekend or overnight call. He/she is not expected to provide cross coverage for any private patients. The program expects the fellow to be readily available for consultation during regular duty hours. Meals and housing are not provided.

The fellow will sign a written employment contract with Partners HealthCare System and will abide by the policies governing all Partners HealthCare System housestaff.  The program will provide malpractice and health insurance coverage for the fellow and three weeks paid vacation. In addition, the program pays for AAPL membership, travel, lodging and tuition for the AAPL annual meeting. The fellow is eligible for subsidized parking or subsidized public transportation and the use of the Harvard facilities. Full details can be found on the Partners HealthCare System Website: http://www.partners.org/research/gme_trainee.html

Required Documents

  1. Please provide a letter of interest.
  2. Please complete and sign the application form.
  3. Please provide three (3) letters of reference. One of these should be from the director of your psychiatry residency training program. The additional two should be from supervisors and attending staff with whom you have worked directly.
  4. Please provide a curriculum vitae and a brief one-page personal statement including aspects of your background, experiences, and interests relevant to training in forensic psychiatry.
  5. Please submit a copy of your current professional licensure.
  6. Please submit two writing samples. These should be fully redacted and should be of a clinical, preferably forensic, nature for which you had primary responsibility.
  7. If there are any interruptions in your medical education or training to date for academic disciplinary reasons please provide a separate written statement of explanation.

The fellowship is a one-year, full-time ACGME-approved training program based at the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH). The fellowship is divided between three off-site facilities with the remaining time being spent at Law and Psychiatry Service (LPS) in academic activities, didactics, supervision, and forensic casework. The didactic curriculum provides a comprehensive overview of adult and child forensic topics and landmark cases in psychiatry and the law. The fellow will be expected to be present at each of these seminars and will give two lectures during the seminar series. The fellow is invited to attend special courses offered to staff and trainees in the LPS, including courses on forensic psychological testing and the evaluation of sexual abuse. The fellow will attend weekly Department of Psychiatry Grand Rounds presentations and is invited to attend teaching seminars and courses offered to staff and trainees in the Department of Psychiatry at MGH. The fellow will also have the option of auditing the Law & Medicine course offered at Harvard Law School.

Throughout the twelve months of the fellowship, the fellow will obtain experience in correctional psychiatry, providing psychiatric consultation and ongoing care to inmates at the Suffolk County House of Correction (SCHOC) one day per week, with supervision by Jose Hidalgo, MD.

The remainder of the fellowship is divided into two six-month blocks. During one six-month block, the fellow will spend one day per week at the New England Forensic Associates (NEFA) under the supervision of Martin Kafka, MD and Leo Keating, LICSW. NEFA provides fellows with an opportunity to learn about the diagnosis and treatment of sexual disorders, as well as the application of clinical knowledge and skills to assessment of these disorders in the forensic setting. At the end of the rotation, fellows will understand the various techniques used to assess these disorders, be able to diagnose and treat commonly occurring sexual disorder, and be able to conduct forensic evaluations in which sexual disorders are an issue.

During the other six-month block, the fellow will spend one day per week at the Boston Juvenile Court Clinic under the supervision of Jennifer Murphy, PhD. Here the fellow will have the opportunity to perform child custody and visitation assessments under the supervision of LPS senior staff.

Resident duty hours are defined as time spent at the worksite performing clinical and/or academic activities required by the training program, including:

 

  • patient care activities, both inpatient and ambulatory, whether scheduled or not (i.e., includes time spent in the hospital when a resident is called in from home)
  • administrative activities that are related to patient care
  • in-hospital “on call”, regardless of what the resident activities are during such periods scheduled- academic activities (i.e., conferences and other didactics).

 

The resident will not be assigned duty hours in excess of 80 hours per week, averaged over a four-week period. Moonlighting hours shall be counted toward the weekly duty hours limit.

 

The resident will be provided with at least one day off in seven, averaged over a four-week period.

 

The resident does not perform any in-house call.

 

The resident will have at least 10 hours off between regularly scheduled on-site duty shifts.

 

The resident will not work in excess of 24 consecutive hours.

Click here for the Fellowship Application

Applications should be sent to:

Ronald Schouten, MD, JD
Director
Law and Psychiatry Service
Massachusetts General Hospital
One Bowdoin Square
15 New Chardon Street, 10th Floor
Boston, MA 02114

If you have any questions or would like additional information, please contact Deana Lozano, Administrative Coordinator, at 617-724-8658 or e-mail her at dlozano@mgh.harvard.edu.

A wealth of educational opportunities

Massachusetts General Hospital offers specialized residencies and fellowships in each of our multidisciplinary care centers and clinical departments