News and updates from the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences
September 22, 2022
MUSC Psychiatry Chair Update
Thomas W. Uhde, M.D.
Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences
Institute of Psychiatry
Research in the Department
Ranked 11th in the nation among departments of psychiatry in total research funding from the National Institutes of Health, MUSC Psychiatry is the single largest research department in the College of Medicine.
Hispanic Heritage Month

Each year, Americans observe National Hispanic Heritage Month from September 15 to October 15, by celebrating the histories, cultures and contributions of American citizens whose ancestors came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean and Central and South America.


The observation started in 1968 as Hispanic Heritage Week under President Lyndon B. Johnson and was expanded by President Ronald Reagan in 1988 to cover a 30-day period. It was enacted into law on August 17, 1988, on the approval of Public Law 100-402.


The day of September 15 is significant because it is the anniversary of independence for Latin American countries Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. In addition, Mexico and Chile celebrate their independence days on September 16 and September18, respectively. Also, Columbus Day or Día de la Raza, which is October 12, falls within this 30 day period.


We are fortunate to have Hispanic American champions serving in a variety of significant roles across the nation and in our MUSC community, some of whom have served for many years and others who are emerging as new leaders, providing important leadership across all our missions..
Interim Dean Steyer invites you to join together in celebrating the Hispanic heritage and culture and encourages you to participate in the fun and educational activities being held in honor of National Hispanic Heritage Month. There are presentations, the Fiesta Latina on Oct. 12, and a variety of Hispanic food trucks on the Greenway throughout the month.

Dr. Howard Becker's high impact research publication titled “Dynorphin/Kappa Opioid Receptor Activity Within the Extended Amygdala Contributes to Stress-Enhanced Alcohol Drinking in Mice" has been selected by Interim Dean Steyer to be honored by the College of Medicine. 
The framed award will hang on the Dean’s Wall of Science, outside the Dean’s Suite at CSB 601. Congratulations, Dr. Becker!
The FY22 Quarter 4 – Employee of the Quarter awards go to:
Martha Gomez, LMSW                                     Dianne Wilson
Project Therapist                                                Program Coordinator II
National Crime Victims Research                      Tobacco Policy and Control Program
and Treatment Center
The FY22 Employee of the Year award goes to:
Townsend Langley
Division Administrator
Addiction Sciences Division
Do you know an employee who has gone the extra mile recently? Nominate them for the Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences' MVP Award! This award will be given quarterly to an employee nominated by their peers for going above and beyond in the workplace. For more information or to nominate an employee, please visit our Employee Recognition Page on the Horseshoe.
Rusted pipes
Study led by MUSC researchers finds long-term mental health issues following Flint water crisis
A study led by researchers at the Medical University of South Carolina five years after the onset of the water crisis in Flint, Michigan, found a continuing “large unmet mental health need.” Dean Kilpatrick, Ph.D., principal investigator of the study, said past-year estimates of post-traumatic stress disorder and depression in Flint were substantially higher than those in Michigan, the U.S. and more than 20 nations included in an international study of PTSD and depression.
The resulting research article on Flint appears in JAMA Network Open, a peer-reviewed, open access journal published by the American Medical Association. The findings in that article are stark. One in five Flint residents surveyed, age 18 and older, suffered from major depression over the past year. One in four had PTSD. And one in 10 had both.
“If you still have PTSD or depression five years after something happens, it’s pretty much evidence that you either didn’t get the right treatment or you still need more treatment,” said Kilpatrick, a distinguished university professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences.
Or any treatment, period. Fewer than 35% of the people surveyed said they’d been offered mental health services related to the water crisis.
The team studying the long-term effects of that crisis included scientists from the departments of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Microbiology and Immunology and Public Health Sciences at MUSC along with researchers from Boston University and Dartmouth University.
Join our Free NAMI Family to Family Program!
NAMI Family to Family Program
Join our free NAMI Family to Family Program, an 8-week educational course for family members and friends of those with a serious mental illness. The course is instructed by trained NAMI family members. 
Starting September 28th, join us Wednesdays from 6:00-8:30 p.m., ending November 16th 2022. 
The program is located at MUSC, Institute of Psychiatry, 5 North #526 Classroom, 67 President Street, in downtown Charleston, SC. 
You must pre-register. Spots are still open!
To register, contact Sharon Diamond, (843) 570-6109, or email
Benefitting MUSC CARES Clinic
Let's pig out at Lewis Barbecue while supporting the MUSC CARES Clinic, a student-run nonprofit medical clinic that provides free health care to the community and an invaluable educational experience for College of Medicine students. 
A $20 ticket will get you a plate of delicious barbecue. There will also be a cash bar and a silent auction. All auction proceeds and $9 from every ticket sold supports the clinic. 
Date and Time
Thursday, Sept. 29, 2022
6 to 9 p.m.
Lewis Barbecue
464 North Nassau St
Charleston, SC 29403
GRAND ROUNDS 2022-2023
Comorbid PTSD and Substance Use Disorders in Adolescents:
What we know and where we go from here
Jesse D. Hinckley, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor
Department of Psychiatry, University of Colorado School of Medicine
September 23, 2022 | 12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m. EST | In-person & Virtual
Join us as we host Jesse D. Hinckley, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Colorado School of Medicine for his presentation on Comorbid PTSD and Substance Use Disorders in Adolescents: What we know and where we go from here. Dr. Hinckley will review current knowledge about comorbid PTSD and substance use disorders in adolescents, focusing on the co-occurrence of these disorders, overlapping symptomatology, shared neurobiologic etiology, evidence-based treatment, and recommendations for advancing clinical care and research.
At the completion of the presentation, attendees will be able to:
  1. Identify signs of co-occurrence of PTSD and substance use disorders in adolescents.
  2. Understand the neurobiologic changes that occur due to these comorbid disorders.
  3. Describe evidence-based treatment and strategies to improve clinical knowledge.
The speaker has no known financial disclosures
--- To join in person ---
  • Join us in the IOP auditorium on the first floor behind the security desk at 67 President Street.
  • Masks are encouraged

--- To join virtually ---
  1. Go to
  2. Enter your full name and email address
  3. Click "Next" and follow the instructions that appear on your screen
The Medical University of South Carolina designates this activity for a maximum of 1.0 APA CE credit(s). Psychologists should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

The Medical University of South Carolina's Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences Office of Continuing Education is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. The Medical University of South Carolina's Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences Office of Continuing Education maintains responsibility for this program and its content.

The Medical University of South Carolina designates this live activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™.
The Medical University of South Carolina is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians.
Grand Rounds 22-23
A call for nominations is underway for the MUSC ARROW Award for the Advancement of
Women Faculty. The purpose of the award is to recognize the MUSC faculty member who
best demonstrates excellence in his/her commitment to the advancement and promotion of women faculty at the Medical University of South Carolina.
The recipient of this annual award will be announced November 2022, and a reception
honoring the awardee will be scheduled in December 2022, social distancing measures
and University directives permitting. In addition to a commemorative plaque, the recipient
will receive a monetary award.

  • The nominee must be a full-time faculty member
  • The nominee must be currently employed with MUSC
Selection Criteria:

This award is given to an MUSC faculty member (male or female) for excellence in enhancing the careers of MUSC women faculty. The following criteria should guide your nomination:
  • Demonstrates personal commitment to the advancement and promotion of women faculty at MUSC
  • Actively mentors women faculty; encourages and supports their advancement
  • Serves as a role model for others
Required Application Materials:
  1. Completed nomination form (Self-nominations are accepted)
  2. A one-page letter of support from the person making the nomination
  3. Two additional supporting letters (maximum 2 pages each)
  4. Nominee’s bio-sketch that includes examples of their investment in faculty development
    efforts (e.g., publications, programs, activities and/or policies established or actively
    supported focused on faculty development)
  5. Nominee’s mentoring table (listing women mentees)
Submission of Application Materials:

Nomination packets should be submitted as one single PDF file to the ARROW
program coordinator at no later than 5:00 PM, October 7, 2022. The recipient will be formally announced no later than November 4, 2022.

Questions regarding the application process should be directed to the ARROW program
coordinator at
Do you have
and use CANNABIS?
If so, you may be eligible to participate in a confidential research study being conducted at MUSC. Compensation is available to those who qualify. If interested, call (843) 792-7500 or email
IRB Number: Pro00112593
Date Approved 7/8/2022
Project ECHO
DART seminar
Pain rehab flyer
The purpose of this research is to test out a new way of treating generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) with low intensity focused ultrasound pulsation (LIFUP). If the subject agrees to participate in the research study, the participation will last approximately 10.5 hours over seven (7) days. The visits are as follows: 1- consent and MRI, 2- and 3- focused ultrasound will be delivered outside of the MRI environment, 4- MRI plus focused ultrasound, 5- assessments 1 week post focused ultrasound, and 6- one month follow-up assessments. Research studies are voluntary and include only people who agree to take part.
IRB Approved at the Study Level
Sep 10, 2020
Weight Loss
Research Study
For Overweight Men and Women
Medical University of South Carolina
Weight Management Center

The MUSC Weight Management Center is conducting a clinical research study to determine the safety and effectiveness of an investigational capsule that may assist weight loss for people who are overweight and otherwise generally healthy. The study capsule must be taken twice daily via mouth throughout the study.
To qualify, you must be at least 18 years of age, overweight or obese, not have any other significant illness or disease (such as diabetes or heart disease), not be taking any medications for weight loss, and meet other criteria. Qualified participants will receive dietary and activity counseling sessions, as well as medical exams, lab work, and weight monitoring.

There is no charge for participation.
This study requires a twenty-eight week commitment.

To have more detailed information sent to you, please call 843-792-5428 or 843-792-CARE. You may also send an email to Mary Harley at or to the Weight Management Center at

The Medical University of South Carolina's values are the heart of the institution and each day these values are exhibited by employees who help to fulfill MUSC's vision statement, Leading Health Innovation for the Lives We Touch.


Each year, the President's Values in Action award program recognizes employees who demonstrate MUSC's five values: compassion, respect, innovation, collaboration and integrity.


Nominations are submitted to recognize an individual who has demonstrated one of the five institutional values within the course of the current calendar year between January and September. All award recipients will receive a certificate, a keepsake, an engraved brick in the Charleston Medical District Greenway and a monetary award.
The deadline for nominations is September 30, 2022.
NAMI Walks Flyer 1
NAMI Walks Flyer 2
Out of the darkness walk

It’s time for the 2022 Charleston Area AFSP Out of the Darkness Suicide Prevention Walk!


The MUSC Psychiatry Team will be walking this year in support of suicide prevention. Last year, the MUSC Psychiatry Team raised OVER $10,000 and was the Top Fundraising Team for the event! Let’s show our support again this year!

Walk Date: Sunday, 10/16/2022

Walk Time: Registration starts at 1:00pm; Ceremony Begins at 2:00pm

Walk Location: North Charleston Riverfront Park


For questions, email Meg Wallace at

Want to play a part in saving lives right here in the Lowcountry? Join hundreds of other riders November 5 for LOWVELO22. The annual event is back and better than ever this year! 100% of rider-raised money benefits lifesaving cancer research at MUSC Hollings Cancer Center.
Registration is now open. Sign up today to help save lives and make a difference in the fight against cancer!

As part of the new MUSC Health and Wellness Institute that recently opened in Mount Pleasant, SC, a newly established Mindfulness Center will be offering a range of mindfulness and resiliency-based classes, workshops, individual sessions, and retreats.  These offerings are not considered mental health counseling, therefore will not be billed through any insurance or be diagnosis driven. However, they may be a useful complementary service for patients seen within Psychiatry, for trainees themselves, as well as for faculty and staff. 


Of note, we will be starting up a 4-week closed group series on Introduction to Mindfulness beginning the first week in March (5:30pm Monday March 7th) and will repeat monthly. This closed group is great for anyone wanting to learn more about the basic principles of mindfulness in a welcoming and nonjudgmental environment. 


In addition, we will be running an 8-week closed Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) group beginning the first week in April (4:30pm Wednesday April 6th).


All services are currently virtual and do not require you to be in the state to participate!


Please see the attached brochure to learn more. 

Hollings Cancer T32 Fellow

Bio-behavioral Medicine


Social Worker (LISW) (MUSCP, Full-Time): Provide a wide variety of direct social worker services in a specialty psychiatric setting for a complex caseload of patients with comorbid medical and psychiatric illness including psychosocial assessment, active treatment and psychotherapy, discharge planning, case management, and related documentation in collaboration with a multi-disciplinary treatment team. The Licensed Social Worker (LISW) or Therapist reports to the Division Director. 


Community Clinic


Licensed Social Worker (LISW) or Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) (MUSCP, Full-Time): The LISW or LPC reports to the Division Director. The candidate will provide a wide variety of direct social worker services in an acute care psychiatric setting for a complex caseload of patients including psychosocial assessment, active treatment, discharge planning, case management, and related documentation in collaboration with a multi-disciplinary treatment team.


Psychiatry Administration


Open Rank & Research Director (UNIV, Full-Time): The Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences (DPBS) at the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) is seeking a clinician-scientist with an MD and/or PhD degree(s) to serve as Research Director for the Eating Disorders Program in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences. The Research Director will direct eating disorders research for the Friedman Eating Disorders Center. The Friedman Eating Disorders Center provides state-of-the-art, evidence-informed treatments of eating disorders (primarily anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa) by a multi-disciplinary subspecialty team of pediatricians, internists, nutritionists, and mental health providers (psychologists and psychiatrists).


Psychiatry Hospitalist Division


Social Worker I (MSW) (MUHA, Full-Time): Under clinical practice guidance of the Social Work Manager, this position provides a wide variety of direct social worker services in an acute care psychiatric setting for a complex caseload of adult/pediatric patients including psychiatric consults, psychosocial assessment, discharge planning, case management, and related documentation in collaboration with a multi-disciplinary treatment team. This position identifies risk factors that the patient may experience after discharge and applies discharge interventions to lower the patient risk of an undesirable event post discharge. The Social Worker (MSW) bridges the discharge to outpatient provider with the patient to address issues and questions.


This position will work primarily in the Adult Psych ED (DPOD) but assist with cross coverage as needed in the Children's Hospital (SJCH ED).


Open Rank (UNIV, Part-Time): Candidate must be a psychiatrist with the ability to hold an unrestricted license to practice in South Carolina. Candidate will be a faculty member of the Psychiatry Hospitalists Division at a .5 FTE (50% effort or 20 hours per week) and provide inpatient care across all adult inpatient units for attendings on leave. Candidate may also be required to cover some night call and weekend coverage as part of their clinical effort.


Sleep and Anxiety Research and Treatment Program (SATRP)


Assistant Professor (UNIV, Full-Time): The Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences is seeking an Assistant Professor/Clinical Psychologist to engage in clinical and research activities in the Sleep and Anxiety Research and Treatment Program (SATRP) at MUSC. The research areas may include ERPs (Event-Related Brain Potentials), fMRI, autonomic measures, psychophysiology of anxiety, or other areas as appropriate, towards a specific population of patients. If candidate will see patients or research participants in a clinical setting, the candidate must obtain a valid SC medical license or psychologist license beforehand. 


Licensed Social Worker (LISW)/LPC (MUSC, Part-Time): This clinician will provide evidence based mental health outpatient services for adults suffering from sleep or anxiety disorders with the Sleep and Anxiety Treatment and Research Program. The position includes both assessments and counseling via office based and remote work from home providing telehealth therapy. Experience with implementing cognitive behavioral therapy and treating sleep and anxiety disorders is recommended. Flexible weekday schedules are preferred to accommodate evening clinic. 

The CPCS office is currently taking referrals for youth and adults for outpatient therapy and/or medication management.

The CPCS office is located at 51 Bee Street and is seeing patients either virtually or in the office. All patients are self-pay at the time of the appointment and will be provided with the necessary paperwork to submit for reimbursement from their insurance companies. All department of psychiatry faculty members are eligible to see private patients in CPCS.


To make a referral or schedule an appointment, call 843-792-9396.


For more information about making a referral or joining the practice, feel free to contact Hilary Bernstein, LISW, DHA at


Check out our website:

Like our Facebook page: Comprehensive Psychiatric Care Specialists





The use of the powerful opiate drug, FENTANYL is on the rise, accounting for a large share of overdose deaths in SC, and the greater US.


Previously, urine drug testing at MUSC could not detect Fentanyl use. The Clinical Neurobiology Laboratory has recently completed an extensive validation of a qualitative (positive vs negative) urine test for the presence of Fentanyl which can be used to distinguish this drug from other commonly used/abused opiates such as oxycodone, buprenorphine and morphine. This test should aid clinicians in the evaluation of patients in multiple clinical settings, especially when illicit drug use is suspected.


Simply order: “Fentanyl, Urine, Qual (IOP LAB)” or “LAB9066”

Individuals needing to contact the MUSC COVID Vaccine Call Center can utilize the information below:
The COVID-19 Vaccine Task Force will be posting updates on the COVID-19 Vaccine intranet site, including information about the vaccine safety and efficacy, so our care team members can make an informed decision.

**Updated University Directives can be found here.** 



The following resource provides MUSC Health lab and testing options pertaining to COVID-19. Included on this page is information regarding drive-thru and “pop-up” mobile COVID testing locations, antibody or serology tests, drive-in lab and nurse visits, and original/classic lab testing.


MUSC Health Lab & Testing Options



Due to the activity of COVID-19 within the hospital and community, all employees, residents, fellows and students within all MUSC entities are directed to begin daily self-monitoring for COVID-19 symptoms. This applies regardless of whether you have been working remotely on a full-time or intermittent basis. You need to continue daily self-monitoring, even if symptoms are not present.




In addition to updates provided by MUSC Enterprise, the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences will also provide updates through our employee intranet, The Horseshoe. Updates will be provided regularly as new information becomes available. For your convenience, direct links are provided below.

If you would like to submit content to include in next week's Chair Update, please submit to Dr. Jamie Fisher by 12:00 pm on Monday. Thank you.
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