Psychotherapy has long been an integral treatment modality for patients with psychiatric conditions, but recent evidence suggests that the practice of psychotherapy by psychiatrists has greatly diminished. Between 1996 and 2005, the percentage of psychiatry office visits involving psychotherapy decreased from about 44% to 29%, a 35% reduction in less than 10 years. Although the increasing availability of medications to treat psychiatric disorders has played a role in this decline, it is not the only factor.This essay reviews the multiple forces effecting this shift and highlights the limited knowledge base regarding the impact of this change on patients.The essay concludes with a call for research to prevent unintended and potentially harmful consequences to patients and to inform the continued role of psychotherapy in residency education.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Issues, ethics and legal aspects
- Health Policy
- History and Philosophy of Science