Fellows complete hands-on training through real-life experiences at a teaching hospital or similar medical facility. They participate in rotations with faculty to evaluate and treat patients exhibiting a variety of addiction-related disorders. Fellows also participate in seminars covering topics such as neurobiology and therapeutic modalities. This training prepares them for board certification in addiction psychiatry. Students must complete a fellowship program in addiction psychiatry to become board-certified addiction psychiatrists. Applicants are also typically required be board-certified psychiatrists or eligible to be board certified and have completed their residency program in psychiatry.
- Prerequisites: Medical licensure
- Program Length: One to two years
- Other Requirements: Fellowship/clinical rotations approved by Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education
Addiction Psychiatry Doctoral Licensure
Because this is a medical sub-specialty, applicants to fellowship programs must be licensed medical doctors. A fellowship program delivers education through clinical rotation, seminars and research activities. Rotations may include experiences in nicotine, psychotherapy, school-based prevention and rehabilitation. Seminars may cover addition topics such as:
- General addiction
- Therapeutic modalities
- Administrative issues
Employment Outlook and Salary Information
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicted job growth for physicians and surgeons, including psychiatrists, to increase by 14% from 2014-2024 (www.bls.gov). According to the American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry, there is a need for qualified professionals to treat those with substance abuse problems (www2.aaap.org). The average salary for psychiatrists in May 2015 was equal to or greater than $187,200 annually, as reported by the BLS.
Certification and Continuing Education Information
The American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology Inc., which is a member of the American Board of Medical Specialties, offers certification in addition psychiatry. Certification generally includes completion of an approved fellowship-training program. Applicants must also have been board-certified in psychiatry for at least a year before applying for addiction psychiatry credentials, as well as pass a certification exam. The American Society of Addiction Medicine also has a certification exam for psychiatrists in addiction medicine.