Forensic Psychiatry Fellowship Program at University Hospitals

The UH/CWRU Forensic Psychiatry Fellowship Program at University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center trains psychiatrists in law and psychiatry who will devote their careers to practice, teaching and research in forensic psychiatry. The program at University Hospitals presents a firm theoretical background in legal concepts as related to the practice of psychiatry, and the practical knowledge and skills necessary to practice forensic psychiatry at the highest levels of expertise.

The forensic psychiatry fellowship was begun in 1979 and has graduated 97 forensic psychiatry fellows over the past 40 years. Graduates of the fellowship have become national leaders in the field of forensic psychiatry, including assuming leadership positions in the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law and the American Psychiatric Association. Many graduates have gone on to establish and lead forensic psychiatry fellowships at other nationally-known institutions.

The Forensic Psychiatry Fellowship is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME). The fellowship experience will prepare fellows and make them eligible to take the examination for Added Qualifications in Forensic Psychiatry by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology.

The program consists of one year of didactic study and supervised clinical experience working in the area of law and psychiatry. A concentration in child forensic psychiatry is available. Three fellowship positions are available each year.

The program’s major strengths are teaching the pragmatic skills of:

  • Performing evaluations in criminal and civil matters, such as competence to stand trial; insanity defense; Battered Woman Syndrome and other affirmative defenses; mitigation of penalty; competence to be executed; psychiatric malpractice; civil commitment; suicide risk assessment; violence risk assessment; duty to protect; psychological damages; personal injury; and disability determination.
  • Detection of malingering
  • Giving effective direct testimony and strategies for dealing with cross-examination
  • Writing comprehensive, well-organized forensic reports
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