Even Goldilocks would be pleased by a trip to Toronto in May: it's not too
hot, it's not too cold; it's just right!
Yes, this year's annual meeting is being hosted by our sophisticated
northern neighbor, a city rich in culture and Canada's most important urban
Located on the north shore of Lake Ontario, Toronto is the hub of the
nation's commercial, financial, and industrial activities and is home to
numerous museums, historic sites, and performing and visual arts centers.
The theme of this year's meeting, selected by APA President Steven
Sharfstein, M.D., is "From Science to Public Policy: Advocacy for
Patients and the Profession" (see facing page). As those of you who
attended the 2005 annual meeting know, Dr. Sharfstein called on all APA
members to become involved in advocacy work, whether on the local, state, or
national level. All the scientific knowledge that psychiatry has gained in the
last 20 years means little if Americans do not have access to high-quality
mental health care. A number of sessions—including a series of
presidential symposia that Dr. Sharfstein describes in his column—will
expound on this important point.
With Dr. Sharfstein's input, the APA Scientific Program Committee and
annual meetings staff have planned another outstanding program that offers you
information on the latest clinical and research advances in psychiatry. That
program will include a special track of sessions offered in collaboration with
the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (see page
10). The track will focus
on promising new treatments and research developments for people with alcohol
use disorders. Using a "translational" approach, the sessions will
provide information that is both accessible to practicing clinicians and
compelling for researchers.
And that's just one of the highlights of this year's annual meeting. The
program will begin in the Toronto Convention Centre on Sunday, May 21, when
Dr. Sharfstein gives a "state of the APA union" address to members
at the Opening Session. Incoming APA President Pedro Ruiz, M.D., will also
On Monday, May 22, David K. Shipler will present the William C. Menninger
Memorial Lecture at the Convocation of Fellows. Shipler won the Pulitizer
Prize in 1987 for his nonfiction book Wounded Spirits, Arab and Jew in the
Promised Land. This book was born out of his experiences as a New
York Times correspondent in Jerusalem. He also wrote A Country of
Strangers: Blacks and Whites in America and was invited to participate in
President Clinton's first town meeting on race relations. Shipler's most
recent book, The Working Poor: Invisible in America, highlights his
keen understanding of the challenges and barriers faced daily by people who
live in poverty. The Convocation will be held at 5:30 p.m. at the Toronto
Afterward, don't rush to leave the convention center. At 7 p.m. the Toronto
Welsh Male Voice Choir will perform in a concert to benefit the Disaster
Relief Fund (see page 5).
This fund was established by APA and the American Psychiatric Foundation to
provide assistance to psychiatrists affected by disasters.
I urge you to attend the entire Distinguished Psychiatrist Lecture Series.
Two lectures relate directly to the meeting theme: The first lecture, titled"
Psychiatric Implications of Displacement: The Emotional Costs of Losing
Human Habitat," will be given on Tuesday, May 23, at 11 a.m. by Mindy
Thompson Fullilove, M.D., a research psychiatrist at the New York State
Psychiatric Institute and a professor of clinical psychiatry and public health
at Columbia University. She has extensively studied AIDS and other problems of
inner-city neighborhoods and received a Robert Wood Johnson Health Policy
Investigator Award to study the consequences of urban renewal on
African-American communities. Her recent book, Root Shock: How Tearing Up
City Neighborhoods Hurts America and What We Can Do About It, examines
The other lecture, titled "Psychiatry and Education: When the Twain
Meet," will be given on Wednesday, May 24, at 9 a.m. by James Comer,
M.D., a professor of child psychiatry at Yale University's Child Study Center.
Dr. Comer is an inspiring advocate for children and the pioneer of the Comer
Method, which bridges child psychiatry and education; it has been disseminated
in over 500 schools in the United States. He has written numerous books, most
recently Leave No Child Behind: Preparing Today's Youth for Tomorrow's
Vivian Pinn, M.D., will also deliver an invited lecture, titled"
Priorities, Initiatives, and Women's Health Research," in which
she will discuss research advances in women's health and their relevance to
psychiatry. In 1991 Dr. Pinn, a lifelong advocate for access to health care,
was named the first full-time director of the Office of Research on Women's
Health at the National Institutes of Health.
This year we are especially honored to have Aaron T. Beck, M.D., present
the Adolf Meyer Award lecture. Dr. Beck, who is internationally recognized for
his pioneering work in cognitive therapy for depression, will talk on"
New Advances in Cognitive Therapy." He is a professor emeritus of
psychiatry at the University of Pennsylvania and has written or co-written
more than 450 articles and 17 books.
Always a popular draw at the annual meeting is the session "Advances
in Research," originally developed by Herbert Pardes, M.D., president
and chief executive officer of New York Presbyterian Hospital and a former APA
president and director of the National Institute of Mental Health. In this
session, which will be held on Monday, May 22, at 10:30 a.m., psychiatric
experts will provide a succinct and relevant update for clinicians on the
latest advances in the field. Among the presenters will be Jeffrey Leiberman,
M.D., chair of psychiatry at Columbia University, who will discuss the CATIE
research outcomes and implications of antipsychotic use for people with
APA's annual meeting isn't limited to psychiatric topics; the meeting also
provides updates in selected areas of general medicine each year. This year's
medical update topics are congestive heart failure, psychopharmacological and
alternative therapies for children with attention-deficit disorder,
testosterone replacement therapy in aging men, and liver transplants.
Take a break from the heavy scientific action by attending the noon forum
on Monday, May 22, titled "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince: Harry
Potter Grows Up." It will be chaired by JoAnne Isbey, an associate
professor of language and literature at the University of Detroit Mercy. And
if you want a little fun in a more serious setting, don't miss the"
Focus Live" series. No, it's not the set of "Who Wants to
Be a Millionaire," but audience members get to use an electronic
response system to answer questions posed by the presenters and receive
immediate feedback on their knowledge. Deborah Hales, M.D., director of APA's
Division of Education and Career Development, has organized sessions on three
topics this year: psychotherapy, led by Jerald Kay, M.D.; eating disorders and
sexual disorders, led by Joel Yager, M.D., and Steven Levine, M.D.; and
personality disorders, led by Glen Gabbard, M.D.
The master educator clinical consultation series provides another
interactive format for learning with psychiatry experts who are outstanding
educators. Among them: Marion Goldstein, M.D., director of the Division of
Geriatric Psychiatry at the University of New York at Buffalo, on geriatric
psychiatry, and Prakash Masand, M.D., a professor of psychiatry at Duke
University, on treatment refractory depression. All sessions are limited to 30
participants to provide plenty of opportunity to interact with faculty.
Rick D'Ali, M.D., a media expert and child psychiatrist at Duke University,
will moderate a follow-up to last year's standing-room-only debate on the
safety and efficacy of second-generation antipsychotics as compared with
This year we will offer a new format planned collaboratively with Robert
Hales, M.D., editor in chief of American Psychiatric Publishing Inc. (APPI),
and its Editorial Advisory Board. Experts in their respective areas of
psychiatry will review recent advances in psychopharmacology, personality
disorders, psychodynamic psychotherapy, mood disorders, and schizophrenia.
Also in collaboration with APPI, we have expanded the "Meet the
Author" discussion groups. Several of these are in the area of academic
psychiatry and training. For example, Laura Roberts, M.D., chair of psychiatry
at the Medical College of Wisconsin, will lead a discussion on career
development issues in academic psychiatry. Michele Riba, M.D., immediate past
president of APA and a professor of psychiatry at the University of Michigan,
will discuss core competency issues in residency training, particularly
combining pharmacotherapy and psychotherapy training. Authors and experts in
women's mental health, Donna Stewart, M.D., University Professor of Psychiatry
and Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of Toronto, and Vivian Burt,
M.D., a professor of psychiatry at UCLA, will discuss their recent advances in
understanding menopause and women's mental health, respectively.
The list of don't-miss sessions could go on and on, but you get the idea:
something will appeal to you in every time slot in which scientific sessions
are scheduled. And when you are not in scientific sessions, you can get to
know our host city better. This issue of Psychiatric News will
introduce you to much that Toronto has to offer and persuade you to register
today for the meeting. Registration details appear on page
4. See you there!▪