Community Mental Health Journal

, Volume 52, Issue 4, pp 379–386 | Cite as

Recommendations for Primary Care Provided by Psychiatrists

  • Wesley Sowers
  • Melissa Arbuckle
  • Sosunmolu Shoyinka
Original Paper


Recent studies have shown that people with severe mental illness have a dramatically lower life expectancy than the general population. Psychiatrists have not traditionally been very attentive to or involved with physical health issues and there has been growing emphasis on integrated care for physical and mental health and access to primary care for all members of the population. This paper examines the role of psychiatrists in the provision of primary care to the patients they treat. Some recommendations are offered for their involvement in the provision of primary care at three levels of complexity: Level 1—Universal Basic Psychiatric Primary Care; Level 2—Enhanced Psychiatric Primary Care; and Level 3—Fully Integrated Primary Care and Psychiatric Management. Some of the obstacles to the provision of primary care by psychiatrists are considered along with some suggestions for overcoming them.


Integrated care Primary care psychiatry Health disparities Psychiatric training curricula 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Wesley Sowers
    • 1
  • Melissa Arbuckle
    • 2
  • Sosunmolu Shoyinka
    • 3
  1. 1.Western Psychiatric Institute and ClinicUniversity of Pittsburgh Medical CenterPittsburghUSA
  2. 2.Department of Psychiatry, New York State Psychiatric InstituteColumbia University Medical CenterNew YorkUSA
  3. 3.Sunflower State Health Plan ColumbiaUniversity of Missouri Medical CenterColumbiaUSA

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