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As PGY3s and PGY4s, residents may choose from a broad range of outpatient electives and can also opt to return to their favorite inpatient or consult sites as junior attendings.

Child and Adolescent Psychiatry

Child and adolescent elective opportunities span the continuum of care, from outpatient specialty clinics to day treatment programs to inpatient options. Resident roles can include diagnostic evaluation, medication management, individual or group therapy, and there are multiple settings where residents can co-lead DBT groups.

Residents can also spend time with the Primary Children’s Hospital Consult-Liaison Psychiatry service or with the Neurobehavioral Consults service, which advises on management of particularly challenging cases involving children and adults on the autism spectrum.

University of Utah has a strong Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Fellowship and Triple Board residency program.

Addiction Psychiatry

Addiction elective opportunities include a variety of outpatient and residential experiences at the VA as well as a rotation in medication-assisted treatment through the HMHI Recovery Clinic. Residents can also participate in individual and group motivational interviewing electives geared at individuals with substance use disorders. Residents receive their buprenorphine (Suboxone) training in PGY2.

University of Utah has a strong Addiction Psychiatry fellowship.

Psychosomatic Medicine and Integrative Care

University of Utah Health is a large system with seemingly endless subspecialty clinics, and integrative care is an area where residents are particularly encouraged to seek an elective in an area of interest. Residents are participating in the Huntsman Cancer Institute psycho-oncology clinic, sleep medicine clinics, cognitive and movement disorder clinics. Residents have recently rotated with neuroradiology, HIV, eating disorder and palliative care clinics. Interdisciplinary clinics through the VA include the Blue Clinic, which is a clinic for both internal medicine and psychiatry, and the geriatric clinic.

Residents frequently rotate at HMHI Neurobehavior HOME, a groundbreaking comprehensive care center which provides care for individuals of any age with developmental disorders. In HMHI HOME clinics, resident psychiatrists have the opportunity to work with in-house primary care doctors, nutritionists, behaviorists, case managers, and more.

Residents can additionally choose to spend one day per week with a preferred inpatient psychosomatic site, such as the University of Utah Health inpatient consult-liaison service or VA inpatient consult-liaison service.

Treatment Resistant Mood Disorders

While all residents learn to appropriately diagnose and manage complex psychiatric pathology, some choose to specifically focus their learning on interventions for treatment resistant cases. Residents can participate in the ECT services at HMHI, University of Utah medical center or the VA medical center. The HMHI treatment resistant depression clinic also exposes residents to Ketamine and TMS treatment. Other electives are the VA clozaril clinic and our community health rotations, where residents work with individuals who have serious and persistent mental illness (SPMI) in a variety of settings.

Community and Rural Psychiatry

Community electives include outpatient clinics at Impact Health (mental health care for exclusively unfunded patients), Summit County and Davis County (two adjacent underserved county systems) and Navajo Health System Telepsychiatry. Residents are currently working with the Volunteers of America Assertive Community Treatment (ACT) team to bring interdisciplinary, intensive services out of the clinic setting directly to those with serious mental illness. Residents have recently rotated at Idaho State Hospital and Utah State Hospital (forensics unit) with some of our region’s most persistently mentally ill individuals.

Forensic Psychiatry

The most popular forensics rotations are in the Utah State Hospital forensic unit and in the Salt Lake County Mental Health Court, where residents serve as designated examiners. However, forensic psychiatry is a broad field, and residents are encouraged to develop electives working with their populations of interest. Residents have worked via telepsychiatry with the Utah State Department of Corrections as well as in private practice civil forensics and private practice criminal forensics.

Global Health

Local elective opportunities in global and cross-cultural mental health include the Utah Health and Human Rights Refugee Clinic and the Hartland Free Clinic. In terms of international elective opportunities, recent residents have traveled to Vietnam, Laos, New Zealand, Peru, Mexico, and Uganda. There is an ongoing relationship in Uganda, and we are working to develop long-term partnerships in Mexico and other sites.


Neuropsychiatry electives include interdisciplinary rotations in movement disorders, cognitive disorders, and neuroradiology. Residents can also be involved in ECT, Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation, and Ketamine infusions via the Treatment-Resistant Mood Disorders Clinic.

Research Elective Sites

Residents can design research electives in the setting of their choice, with approval by the program. Recent elective sites include the University of Utah Brain Institute, Neuropsychiatric Institute Treatment-Resistant Mood Disorders research, SLC VAMC (MIRECC, mindfulness, and clinical trials), and the Huntsman Cancer Institute (psycho-oncology).

Teaching Opportunities

Approved teaching projects can be used as electives. The most popular option is a medical student teaching elective for MS3 clerkships. Other residents have participated in the MS2 Brain and Behavior unit. Residents have also given a series of lectures on psychiatry in primary care to internal medicine residents and nurse practitioners, and taught introduction to psychopharmacology to psychology interns.

Psychotherapy Elective Sites

While all residents carry psychotherapy patients in their continuity clinics, some residents choose to specifically focus their learning on honing psychotherapy skills. Popular options include medical student psychotherapy, PTSD psychotherapy (PE or CPT at the VA) and advanced motivational interviewing. Residents can set up electives in the modality of their choice, as long as they secure an appropriate supervisor with approval by the program. Residents also frequently use elective slots to run DBT groups (youth or adult) alongside experienced therapists; there are similar arrangements available in mindfulness, process and social skills groups. Please see the psychotherapy training page for additional information.

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