The Department of Psychiatry and Psychological Services provides treatment for common psychiatric disorders such as mood disorders, anxiety-related disorders, eating disorders and marital and family therapy. We also specialise in the treatment of drug and alcohol problems, particularly in the medical and legal professions. We provide neuropsychometric assessment for individuals who have suffered brain injury either due to head trauma or due to intra-cerebral pathology.
Our department was established in 1993 by Dr Robert Fisher and Mr Peter Rawling. It now consists of two full-time psychiatrists, Dr Robert Fisher and Dr Deepinder Miller and two-part time psychiatrists, Dr Dal Rettalack and Dr Gregory McLean.
A number of psychologists, Dr Jeanette Stewart, Dr Evelyn Bergelund, Mrs Jo Langham, Dr Ilana Hepner, Associate Professor Paul Rhodes, Dr Elizabeth Mason, Mr Peter Rawling and Dr Brigette Lane also work at St Vincent’s Private and St Vincent’s Clinic on a part-time basis. Each psychologist brings expertise in their field and provides a service to other specialists within the hospital.
Dr Robert Fisher, as Head of Department, has provided services to the Medical Council of NSW, assessing and providing reports on doctors who have been notified to the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) or the Medical Council of NSW, support services to the legal fraternity, including the Law Society and Barrister’s Board of NSW and is also a director of the Tristan Jepson Memorial Foundation, an organisation set up to address the mental-ill health of the legal profession across the board.
Our hope is that, as the department grows, consultation-liaison psychological and psychiatric services to our medical and surgical specialist colleagues can be extended. Ultimately, we hope there will be a dedicated adult mental health inpatient unit, to complement Uspace, our adolescent and young adult mental health unit, located in the O’Brien Building.
Given St Vincent’s Private’s neurosurgical involvement with Deep Brain Stimulation, there’s likely to be further research into the role of treatment using Deep Brain Stimulation for a range of serious psychiatric disorders.