Objectives & Competencies
The Postdoctoral Fellowship in Clinical Health Psychology is focused on the training and development of psychologists to work in primary care settings. The one-year training program follows a biopsychosocial model focusing on the interaction of biological, psychosocial and medico-legal variables. Fellows develop skills to function as an integrated member of a primary care team and gain experience in assessment and intervention approaches within the primary care structure with a diverse population. The training closely follows and is based on the standards set by the American Psychological Association for accreditation for Health Service Psychology. Specific objectives and competencies are listed on the brochure.
The clinical rotations provided by the Fellowship give Postdoctoral Fellows a unique opportunity to train in Clinical Health Psychology within an Integrated Primary Care setting. Integrated Primary Care is a model that combines medical and behavioral health services for the spectrum of problems that patients bring to primary medical care. Because most patients in primary care have a physical, chronic illness, problems maintaining healthy lifestyles, or a psychological disorder, it is clinically effective and cost-effective to make behavioral health providers part of primary care. Patients can address all their health problems in one place. Teamwork of mental health and medical providers is an embodiment of the biopsychosocial model.
Fellows will see patients in ambulatory primary care clinics which include services in Adult & Family Medicine, Women’s Health, and Pediatrics.
Lee Health (Ft. Myers)
• Family Medicine Residency Program at Lee Health
• Lee Community Clinic at Lehigh Acres
• Lee Family Medicine Clinic at Plantation
Healthcare Network (Immokalee)
• Family Medicine/Internal Medicine
• Women’s Health
Center for Child Stress & Health
Fellows have the opportunity with the Center for Child Stress & Health to increase their knowledge and skills in the area of trauma in children and families. Interested Fellows may choose to join a research project. Fellows interested in more in depth experience may apply for a limited number of research positions at the Center for a second year fellowship.
The fellow will function as a Behavioral Health Consultant in an integral multidisciplinary healthcare team. Primary duties will include providing screenings and diagnostic evaluations, behavioral consultations, and brief interventions across the lifespan with children, adults and families. Services provided by Fellows match the pace and nature of primary care settings.
• Behavioral Health Didactics: This is a weekly mandatory attendance seminar for all Fellows that covers various topics to build core knowledge and skills in practicing primary care psychology. Seminar topics emphasize the reciprocal and dynamic influence of biological, psychological and social factors on the etiology, treatment and experience of illness and disease. Issues of diversity and culture are discussed as they pertain to providing culturally appropriate care. Seminars are taught by faculty including psychologists, physicians and pharmacists as well as health administrators with experience in integrated healthcare delivery.
• Consultation Group: weekly group attended by all fellows and supervised by faculty focusing on cases that have teachable elements for group learning and an opportunity for fellows to practice presentation skills and consultation. Emphasis is placed on supervision skills with colleagues.
• Doctoring 3 and Residency Didactics and Behavioral Health Didactics: This is an opportunity for multidisciplinary training/learning between psychology and medical trainees. The overall goal of participation is to enhance Fellows’ teaching skills within an academic health setting. Fellows will be assigned specific topics for presentation to medical students, residents and/or psychology fellows. Presentations will be developed with faculty supervision. Additionally, fellows will provide clinical consultation/teaching to medical students completing rotations in their units.
• Cross-cultural Medicine/Service Learning: Fellows are expected to participate in service learning experience where fellows are immersed into the community for outreach activities to deliver primary care and education. Faculty and trainees from the FSUCOM as well as from other FSU programs and residencies work together on these outreach projects. This experience is designed to prepare fellows to work in underserved areas and to have knowledge of public health and diseases commonly found in such communities.
• Journal Club/Medical Humanities: Some Didactics seminar sessions focus on scientific literature. This experience allows Fellows to enhance evidence-based practice and to advance their skills at analyzing the quality, validity, and relevance of available evidence. Additionally twice a year the session will focus on discussion of a common selected book to enhance cultural diversity.
• Committees: Fellows will participate in medical staff meeting and may be assigned to clinic/health system committees to enhance competencies in administration and systems.
Each Postdoctoral Psychology Fellow receives a minimum of two hours of individual supervision by a Licensed Psychologist/FSUCOM Faculty Member. One hour is for traditional scheduled supervision and one hour is live in-clinic consultation consistent with the integrated care model. Additionally, all fellows participate in one hour per week of group consultation. Supervisors are assigned to each rotation based on their expertise within that specialty domain and patient population. All supervisors follow an “open door” policy and are readily available for additional and informal supervision session as needed. The structure and content of supervision in Primary Care often mirrors the pace and structure of the Primary Care setting. Supervision frequently occurs at times outside of, and in addition to, the scheduled supervision blocks. Such supervision is flexible and occurs in real-time. Supervisory consultations may include questions regarding diagnostic clarification, treatment planning, care coordination, appropriate triage, and practice management. Furthermore, the content of supervision in primary care is not exclusively about the treatment of patients as working in primary care adds layers of complexity to interprofessional practice, ethics, and practice management. Fellows sign a supervision agreement with their individual supervisors and with the Program Director at the start of the Fellowship. Supervisor also incorporates professional mentoring [for the transition to independent practice / employment].
The Florida State University College of Medicine is committed to maintaining a supportive educational environment where fellows are given the opportunity to learn and grow. Faculty are proactively addressing any performance concerns that arise and providing trainees with the needed support to remediate issues of fellow competence throughout the training. The Fellowship Handbook includes a Due Process policy that outlines due process for postdoctoral fellows and establishes the procedure for addressing postdoctoral fellows’ deficiencies, including notice, hearing, and appeal.