The Department of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School (HMS Department) brings together the leaders and faculty from the Departments of Psychiatry at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Brigham & Women’s Hospital, Cambridge Health Alliance, Boston Children’s Hospital, Massachusetts General Hospital, McLean Hospital, and VA Boston Healthcare System into a collaborative partnership that

  • Fosters career development of an academic faculty with a broad range of professional interests and skills; cultivates mentor relationships among students, trainees, and faculty mentors, with special attention to the mentoring needs of minorities and women;
  • Supports an environment that encourages collaboration and is dedicated to scientific integrity, the pursuit of knowledge and the ethical dimensions of research;
  • Expands the scientific foundations of psychiatry to encompass prevention, service, policy and outcome research;
  • Emphasizes the importance of clinical research and facilitates the rapid integration of findings into the care of patients;
  • Provides opportunities to understand the principles and mechanisms that underlie psychiatric and substance use disorders, and their treatment;
  • Prepares students and trainees to deliver clinical services of the highest quality in accordance with the understanding of these principles and promotes the understanding of the ethical considerations in the delivery of care; and
  • Promotes the delivery of care in a comprehensive, coordinated and cost-effective manner that meets the needs of patients, families and the community.

The HMS Department is committed to integration of the full range of theoretical perspectives and educational, scholarly and clinical efforts that now exist within the HMS Department's affiliated institutions through close collaborations that optimize the unique strengths and expertise of each institution.

​​​​​​​Clinical Excellence – Providing an evidence-based full care continuum
With over 2,200 faculty and 500 trainees across its seven participating institutions, a full care continuum of behavioral health care is provided, including acute inpatient beds, holding/respite beds, partial hospital programs, emergency and crisis intervention programs, residential programs, outpatient services, and expert consultation services to medical patients with co-morbid psychiatric disorders. These clinical services provided across the seven institutions include private general hospitals, psychiatric hospitals, public sector settings, children’s hospital, and the VA Boston Healthcare System. All services are designed to be comprehensive, multidisciplinary, evidence-based, coordinated and cost-efficient manner that meet the needs of patients, families and the community.

Educational Excellence – Educating the next generation
The HMS Department provides both didactic and clinical learning experience for all Harvard Medical School students, as well as visiting medical students from around the country. It is the largest training site in the United States for general and child psychiatry residency training. The HMS Department also has post-residency fellowships in addictions psychiatry, consultation-liaison, psychiatry/psychosomatic medicine, forensic psychiatry, geriatric psychiatry, psychopharmacology, psychotherapy, and psychiatry research across the seven institutions. It offers predoctoral clinical psychology training programs and clinical postdoctoral fellowships in behavioral medicine, medical crisis counseling, and neuropsychology. The HMS Department has research-training programs in psychiatric neuroscience, addictions, and biological/social psychiatry, among others.

Cutting Edge Investigation – Bringing scientific discoveries to the bedside
With over $160M in total sponsored research funding, the HMS Department research faculty are among the world leaders in scientific discovery. The HMS Department has a number of centers of excellence that work to translate these discoveries from the bench to the bedside through specialty areas including child and adolescent psychiatry, geriatrics, clinical psychopharmacology, consultation-liaison, forensic psychiatry, epidemiology, mental health services research, and serious and persistent mental illness. The scholarly and research activities of the HMS Department are characterized by their diversity, ranging from molecular neurobiology, to the application of psychoanalytic theory, to literature interpretation.​​​​​​​