Behavioral Health

Welcome to Behavioral Health

The mission of Behavioral Health is to support the predoctoral, residency, and faculty development activities that incorporate psychosocial and mental health aspects of medical care, and to participate in research concerning these issues.

Curricular Goals

  • To promote an understanding of the role of family, psychosocial and cultural contexts in primary health care.
  • To promote an understanding of the role of the dynamics of the patient-physicians relationship and the concept of "physician as medicine."
  • To assist in teaching recognition and treatment of mental illness in the primary care setting or/in conjunction with integrated behavioral health providers.

Predoctoral Curricular Elements

Behavioral Health faculty work with the Predoctoral division to fulfill elements of the NIH behavioral health training grant.

Residency Curricular Elements

Principle: The behavioral health residency curriculum should be incorporated into all aspects of outpatient and inpatient care.


Practical Behavioral Health: These are hour long didactic sessions conducted by physicians or behavioral scientists to focus on core elements of the behavioral health curriculum.


Resident Balint Group: Balint group meetings are held every two weeks during, beginning the second or third year of residency, as part of our Wednesday afternoon conference days. A separate group is held for each residency class. The Balint Group is a small-group method of discussing and reflecting on the doctor-patient relationship. It was developed in the 1950s in England, and is used as a training technique world-wide. The purpose of the Balint Group Session is to build empathy for the patient and to explore creatively the unique bond between doctor and patient. Three of our six Balint leaders are certified by the American Balint Society and are Council members of that organization.

Resident Support Groups: A support group is held for first- and second-year residents biweekly, supervised by an experienced group leader, to help process personal and professional issues particular to family physicians in training.

Individual Resident Training Activities

Hazelden/Springbrook "Family Week": All residents spend four full days participating in the "family week" activities at an inpatient drug and alcohol treatment program. They join with the families of inpatients to learn in depth about the 12-step model of recovery from substance abuse, and learn about Al-anon as a program of recovery for family members. Many of the inpatients are medical professionals which fosters an atmosphere of reflection by the residents.

Evening at White Shield Home for Young Mothers and Pregnant Women: Residents accompany a faculty physician, Dr. Scott Fields, who makes a monthly trip to this living center for young women and their infants. They conduct an informal discussion about health and social issues, as well as other concerns of the women who live in the home.

Videotape Review: All residents are scheduled into four videotape review sessions each year. They are expected to videotape (with consent) at least one patient encounter for each session. Each session consists of a faculty member and three residents. Discussion focuses on the patient-physician interactions from a behavioral health viewpoint. This is intended as an opportunity for residents to receive faculty feedback about their interactive style with patients, as well as practice giving and receiving feedback.

Clinical Activities

Precepting: As part of their PsyD practicum year, four psychology graduate students see patients two days weekly at the Richmond Clinic and two psychology graduate students see patients two days weekly at the Scappoose Clinic.  All students are under the supervision of under the supervision of Joan Fleishman, PsyD. The students conduct counseling and evaluation sessions for the patients in which residents are invited to participate. The students are also precepted by the clinics LSCWs to further their training in behavioral health integration.

Faculty Development Curricular Elements

The behavioral health faculty will assist in any components of faculty development having to do with behavioral health.

For more information please contact:

John Muench, MD, MPH
503 494-3437

Demetrio Sanchez, Jr., LCSW

Rebekah Schiefer, MSW, LCSW