Students in Alabama may gain exposure to many types of psychiatric concepts, patients, lectures and research opportunities. They may be able to practice at on campus medical clinics, at local hospitals and at treatment centers. Programs consist of subjects such as neuroscience, neurobiology, sexual orientation, child development and pathology, cognitive disorders, group psycho therapy, family counseling and substance abuse.
Anatomy, physiology and patho-physiology are the foundations of psychiatry. However, the study of psychiatry in Alabama also includes the intrapersonal and interpersonal dynamics. The main objective is basically to balance biological and psychosocial interventions despite external pressures. In Alabama, students pursuing psychiatry are first taught to become physicians. Thus, students first go to medical or osteopathic school and learn firsthand about biochemistry, anatomy, neuroanatomy, physiology, histology, pathology, pharmacology, pediatrics, obstetrics-gynaecology, surgery, anaesthesiology, internal medicine, neurology, preventive medicine, primary care and emergency medicine.
Then the students will do their psychiatry residency in the evaluation and treatment of emotional, cognitive, behavioral and addictive disorders. This incorporates evolving their scientific knowledge and applying it into clinical practice.
The curriculum for the clinical training in psychiatry in Alabama includes internal medicine, family medicine, neurology, inpatient and outpatient, child and adolescent, consultation-liaison, addiction, emergency and geriatric psychiatry and experience in community and forensic psychiatry.
There are six main things taught especially to psychiatry students:
- Professionalism – demonstrating commitment to their professional responsibilities, ethical principles and sensitivity to diverse populations.
- Medical knowledge – understanding the applications of biomedical and clinical sciences in patient care
- Patient care and procedural skills – providing patient care that is compassionate, appropriate and effective
- Interpersonal communication skills – demonstrating effective information exchange with patients, families, professional associates, and fostering an ethical therapeutic relationship with patients
- Practice-based learning and improvement – evaluating patient care practices and assimilating scientific evidence to improve practice
- Systems-based practice – demonstrating awareness of responsibility to the larger context and systems of health care
Supervision and mentoring are the most important things as the foundations of psychiatric diagnosis and treatment are direct patient observation, interaction and dialogue. Because psychiatric diagnosis and response to treatment can not be confirmed by a blood test or x ray, it is highly important to meet the foundations of psychiatric diagnosis.