At Tower Health-Brandywine Hospital Psychiatry, we are fully aware of the stress that may occur during residency training. We pay close attention to wellness and resilience in our residents. Our goals are to promote a healthy work-life integration by an emphasis on the importance of physical, social, professional and psychological wellness. Our robust resident-centered Wellness Program, includes the following components:
All residents meet monthly for a resident forum. These meetings are a forum to discuss issues and concerns, residents are informed of upcoming events, and updates from GME and the program. This makes it possible to address issues in a timely manner and make any needed change, and provides a venue for the residents to stay involved and active.
Process Group and Mentor Program
Our program strongly believes in the value of mentorship. On a monthly basis, each PGY class meets as a process group under a supervisor. The process group helps residents openly discuss personal and professional matters. In addition, each resident has an individual off-unit supervisor for weekly meetings to discuss patient care and other professional topics including personal growth in a structured and confidential setting. Residents have the opportunity to meet with all of our faculty on an ad hoc basis for consultation about career development.
The Psychiatry Residency program hosts a two-day annual resident retreat. The retreat provides an opportunity for residents to come together as a group in a non-clinical setting. They evaluate the program, discuss their experiences over the year and offer suggestions for improvement and expansion. There are also team-building and recreational events planned during the two-day retreat.
As a program, we believe in giving back to our community. In the past our residents have organized clothing and book drives for organizations in Philadelphia, participated in annual suicide prevention walks to help raise awareness, and lectured to middle school students about mental health issues.
Social Events and Gatherings
In addition to orientation, an annual welcome party is held for the new incoming residents, organized by the upper classes and faculty, generally at a faculty member’s home. This intimate setting offers an opportunity for residents, fellows and faculty to connect on a more personal level.
Many resident social events occur during the year, including sporting events, holiday parties and gift exchange, theatre excursions, beach day trips, happy hours and dinners. As we work closely with residents in other departments, we occasionally have joint events.
A monthly movie club has over many years been a popular event with residents and faculty alike. Residents choose a film that has psychiatric themes, watch it as a group and then discuss their reactions. The program also offers a book club for those interested in the intersection of psychiatry and literature.
The GME office at Tower Health also provides wellness offerings for the house staff community.
Program Director Open-Door Policy
In our program, an open door policy has been in place for the past four years. Residents are encouraged to stop by whenever they feel the need to speak with or bring up concerns to the program director.
Psychiatry Residency Movie Club
Do you like watching movies?
Are you interested in psychiatry?
If you answered yes to at least two of those questions, you should probably get involved with the Psychiatry Residency movie club.
The main goal is for medical students and residents to learn by watching awesome flicks and discussing pertinent themes that relate to the field of psychiatry. Each month will be based around a single theme in psychiatry. Please contact Dr. Sudak for additional details.
Psychiatry Residency Book Club
The book club is open to residents, medical students and attending psychiatrists interested in exploring psychiatry in the humanities. We select books from different genres, topics and points of view with the purpose of opening a window into the lives of our patients as they battle their illnesses. We gather every month or two for debates and conversations on social, political or literary topics. If you would like to come and discuss any of the books below, we welcome you to share your opinion and experiences!
Some of the books we have read in the past:
- The Bell Jar – Sylvia Plath
- The Girl on the Train – Paula Hawkins
- Shock: The Healing Power of Electroconvulsive Therapy – Kitty Dukakis, Larry Tye
- My Lovely Wife in the Psych Ward – Mark Lukach
Future books might include:
- The Center Cannot Hold – Elyn R. Saks
- An Unquiet Mind: A Memoir of Moods and Madness – Kay Redfield Jamison
- Mad in America – Robert Whitaker
- Hallucinations – Oliver Sacks
- Brain on Fire – Susannah Cahalan
- The Boy Who Was Raised as a Dog – Bruce D. Perry
- Unhinged: The Trouble with Psychiatry, A Doctor’s Revelation about a Profession in Crisis – Daniel J. Carlat