McLean Hospital Launches the Metabolic and Mental Health Program

by | Mar 5, 2024 | About Us, Get Involved, News

Medical Review by Chris Palmer, MD

In a landmark initiative that promises to redefine the landscape of mental health treatment, McLean Hospital, the flagship psychiatric hospital of Harvard Medical School and a key component of Mass General Brigham, Boston’s premier health care system, has announced the launch of the Metabolic and Mental Health Program. Supported by a generous donation of $3 million by Mr. Lewis Sanders, this groundbreaking program is poised to pioneer a new frontier in mental health care by integrating metabolic insights into the diagnosis, treatment, and management of mental health disorders. Dr. Christopher Palmer will lead this cutting-edge program as its Founder and Director.

Bridging Metabolism and Mental Health

The Metabolic and Mental Health Program is borne out of a growing recognition of the intricate links between metabolic processes and mental health conditions. By exploring these connections, the program aims to advance the understanding of mental health disorders and develop innovative metabolic interventions to enhance patient outcomes. This initiative aligns with McLean Hospital’s commitment to providing cutting-edge mental health care and its legacy of excellence in psychiatric research and education.

Core Objectives and Innovations

The program’s mission is multifaceted, targeting key areas to revolutionize mental health care:

  • Pioneering Research: Working with world-renowned psychiatrists and neuroscientists who have been studying the metabolic and mitochondrial bases of schizophrenia and bipolar disorder for decades, this new program will build on this legacy and conduct research to further elucidate and clarify the metabolic and mitochondrial underpinnings of a broad range of neuropsychiatric disorders, aiming to identify potential interventions that could significantly improve patient outcomes.
  • Metabolic and Mental Health Consultation Service: Launching a new clinical service that offers comprehensive metabolic health assessments and tailored treatment strategies. This service will be delivered by a multidisciplinary team consisting of a psychiatrist, dietitian, and health and wellness coach, addressing a critical gap in current mental health care offerings.
  • Educational Outreach and Clinician Training: Advancing the metabolic theory of mental illness through scholarly publications, public education, and specialized training programs for clinicians. These efforts will be supported by McLean’s Department of Postgraduate and Continuing Education and Harvard Medical School’s Office for External Education, ensuring the dissemination of knowledge and the upskilling of professionals in this emerging field.

Join Our Trailblazing Team

As this ambitious program gets underway, McLean Hospital is actively seeking passionate and skilled individuals to join the team. Opportunities are available for an Assistant or Associate Professor, junior investigators, research assistants, psychiatrists, dietitians, and health and wellness coaches who are eager to contribute to this pioneering initiative. This call for talent is not just a job opportunity; it’s an invitation to be at the forefront of a movement poised to transform the mental health field.

Interested candidates and those wishing to learn more about the Metabolic and Mental Health Program are encouraged to apply to the positions below. Together, we can forge a new path in mental health care, with the potential to improve millions of lives.

Research Faculty Position: Learn More and Apply

Postdoctoral Fellow: Learn More and Apply

Consulting Psychiatrist (Part-time): Learn More and Apply

Dietitian (Part-time): Learn More and Apply

Health and Wellness Coach (Part-time): Learn More and Apply

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