Geriatric Psychiatry Fellowship Program

Rotation Sites

On-campus Sites:

UCLA Medical Center

The UCLA Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences is the home within the David Geffen School of Medicine for faculty who are expert in the origins of and treatments for disorders of complex human behavior.

The Department is also an integral part of The Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior at UCLA which is a world leading, interdisciplinary research and education institute devoted to the understanding of complex human behaviour and the causes and consequences of neuropsychiatric disorders.

The Resnick Neuropsychiatric Hospital is the department’s flagship location for patient care at UCLA and has consistently been ranked among the top five facilities nationwide by U.S. News & World Reports.

UCLA Division of Geriatric Psychiatry

The UCLA Division of Geriatric Psychiatry in the Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences at the UCLA School of Medicine, fosters an learning environment in which geriatric psychiatry education and research are integrated into exemplary patient care. The Division overseas the Geriatric Psychiatry Fellowship and provides geriatric psychiatry training for the UCLA Adult Psychiatry Residency, Medical School, and Clinical Psychology programs.

The Division has been a national leader in the field of geriatric psychiatry since 1977, when UCLA first launched a geriatric psychiatry inpatient unit and subsequent outpatient and outreach programs. Dr. Lissy Jarvik (dec. 2021) and past president of the American Association for Geriatric Psychiatry (AAGP, 1984-85) is credited for her seminal role in expanding the field of geriatric psychiatry and bringing it to national recognition.

The Division of Geriatric Psychiatry was established in 1998 with Dr. Gary Small as Division Director, Director of the UCLA Center on Aging until 2021 and former Geriatric Psychiatry Fellowship Director. Dr. Small brought national recognition to the Division from his support for academic research, clinical care and medical education. Dr. Helen Lavretsky, who is current AAGP President (2023-24), is Distinguished Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association with an extensive body of nationally recognized research on alternative approaches to traditional medicine such as Tai Chi and other mind-body interventions. Dr. Aaron Kaufman is Director of the UCLA Geriatric Psychiatry teaching clinic (GEC), which trains over 30 Residents and Fellows annually. He has been mentoring Fellows for over 20 years. Dr. Randal Espinoza served as former Geriatric Psychiatry Fellowship Director from 2013-2022 and has been Director of the UCLA ECT Clinical Service for over 20 years.

Off-Campus Sites:

Greater Los Angeles VA Healthcare Center

Whole-person care is emphasized in geriatric psychiatry training at the Greater Los Angeles VA as a part of many federal national initiatives to provide exemplary care to older Veterans. The Greater Los Angeles VA rotations provide clinical training in inter-disciplinary care of patients with geriatric mental health issues related to aging, medical comorbidities and frailty. Fellows rotate in the Memory-Neurobehavior for the entire fellowship, Movement Disorders Clinic (Parkinsonian disorders and other movement disorders), Geriatric Psychiatry Clinic, Geriatric Medicine clinic (G.R.E.C.C.), an interventional clinic for mood disorders, and the Palliative Care program in a skilled nursing facility.

Fellows are supported with protected time to pursue scholarly activities in academics, quality-improvement, and research.  For example, Fellows may opt to pursue training in a specific psychotherapeutic modality with Dr. Brandon Yarns on ISTDP or with a geriatric psychologist on palliative care or mindfulness. Fellows may wish to develop skills in medical education with a faculty mentor. Or, Fellows may wish to be involved in an ongoing clinical trial, other research study, or quality improvement project.

Department of Mental Health, Los Angeles County

The DMH, LAC geriatric, integrative home-based care program. Fellows rotate with LA County Dept of MH to provide in-home geriatric care to home-bound, frail, older adults.