Medical Psychology

Kirk Stucky PsyD talks about sports-related head injuries in “Medical Minute,” a segment that aired on ABC-TV Flint affiliate station WJRT-TV Sept. 25, 2015.

The Postdoctoral Medical Psychology Fellowship Program at Hurley Medical Center (HMC) offers three fellowship positions, with three areas of emphasis, each with a fully developed clinical and educational curriculum. They are well-supervised, hands-on, and highly rated by past graduates.

As part of the Flint-based Consortium for Advanced Psychology Training (CAPT), housed within the Michigan State University (MSU) Flint Area Medical Education office at HMC, the Hurley program enables fellows to further develop their skills as clinical psychologists while obtaining additional training in one of the following areas:

Most graduates of the program obtain employment in a medical center and remain active in medical education, hospital practice, rehabilitation, or clinical neuropsychology practice. More than 90% report that the training they received was very closely related to their current employment.

Medical Psychology Fellowship Program Strengths

Consortium experience: The consortium is composed of three primary training sites, with 10 positions total. Hurley is one site, and its three focus areas (listed above) are unique in the region. Fellows in the consortium are assigned to a primary training site, such as Hurley or one of the other two medical centers in the Flint area; however, each fellow benefits from exposure to all consortium faculty, resources, and fellow peers through behavioral grand rounds, seminar series, group supervision, fellow peer lunch, psychopharmacology lecture series, rehabilitation lecture series and more.

Multidisciplinary team: Medical psychology fellows work in various multidisciplinary team settings and gain significant experience in medical education, scholarly activity, and clinical care. The fellow has the opportunity to provide preventive and treatment-oriented consultation for patients in acute ambulatory, outpatient, primary care, inpatient, intensive care and rehabilitation settings in order to understand the interactions of disease, medicine and behavioral factors, as well as to learn techniques of assessment, therapy and management. Individual and family conferences are part of the comprehensive experience.

Academic experience: The Medical Psychology Fellowship Program also provides fellows with opportunities to conduct research, as well as to teach medical students and residents at Hurley, which is the only hospital in the county with an independent Department of Psychology composed of a dedicated team of psychologists who see patients daily in the hospital. Collaboration with ongoing projects is welcome, and faculty provide mentoring to help the Fellow develop and carry out his or her own senior project prior to exiting the program.

1st accredited program in nation: Hurley has maintained a medical psychology fellowship since 1993, and CAPT was the first program in the country to receive specialty accreditation in Clinical Health Psychology through the American Psychological Association.

Extensive range of clinical conditions: Hurley is a 443-bed teaching hospital with a 16-bed inpatient rehabilitation unit, a Level I Trauma Center, an ICU, pediatric ICU, burn unit, and about 90,000 visits per year in the Emergency Department (including the Pediatric Emergency Department). The Fellow is exposed to a wide spectrum of chronic illness, neurological diseases and injuries, such as:

  • Cancer
  • Diabetes
  • Developmental disorders
  • Alzheimer’s disease and other types of dementia
  • Epilepsy
  • Heart Disease
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Sickle Cell Anemia
  • Spinal cord injury
  • Stroke
  • Traumatic amputation
  • Traumatic brain injury

Diverse array of assessments: Fellows also have a chance to conduct many types of assessments to address areas such as attention and concentration, emotional adjustment, language, memory, speech and motor development, personality or behavioral changes, executive functioning, visuospatial skills and more.

Quality of life — both professional and personal — is an important component of the fellowship. The Fellows’ schedules are reasonable with liberal fringe benefits and competitive stipends, so they are able to focus their energy on developing their skills as psychologists and educators. Located an hour north of Detroit, Hurley Medical Center is at the center of a vibrant urban and educational setting, with many of Michigan’s natural wonders just a short drive away. The Flint and Genesee County area itself also has a lively cultural center, downtown, and lots of festivals and nationally recognized farmers’ markets.

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