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“Teacher’s teacher” to oversee curriculum as education dean

Medicine@Yale, 2006 - July Aug


In June, Associate Professor of Psychiatry Richard Belitsky, M.D., was named deputy dean for education at the medical school.

Belitsky, a popular and respected professor as well as a skilled clinician and administrator, is “a teacher’s teacher and a doctor’s doctor,” Dean and Ensign Professor of Medicine Robert J. Alpern, M.D., said in announcing the appointment.

“He is an outstanding educator who has received many of the top teaching awards from Yale—one of them twice—and from his colleagues in psychiatry nationally,” Alpern said. “He is also a highly effective administrator, adept at framing issues and working through them with colleagues in many departments, at conceiving and launching new programs, and at sorting and extracting the data needed for good decision making.”

A native of Philadelphia, Belitsky received his bachelor’s and medical degrees from the University of Florida. He came to Yale as a resident in 1979 and continued on as a fellow in forensic psychiatry until 1983.

After joining the School of Medicine faculty, Belitsky rose quickly through the ranks, serving at various times as unit chief and director of inpatient services at the Connecticut Mental Health Center; as medical director of the Yale Psychiatric Institute; and as director of residency education and of medical studies in psychiatry. He has been deputy chair of the psychiatry department since 2001, where he has been deeply involved in teaching both medical students and residents.

He has served on numerous committees including the Medical School Admissions Committee, the Educational Policy and Curriculum Committee, the Graduate Medical Education Committee and the Physician Associate Program Curriculum Committee. He also chairs the Committee on Physician Health at Yale-New Haven Hospital.

His teaching awards include the Charles W. Bohmfalk Teaching Prize in 2002, the Francis Gilman Blake Award in 1998 and again in 2000, induction into the medical school’s Society of Distinguished Teachers in 2002 and the Irma Bland Award for Excellence in Teaching Residents from the American Psychiatric Association in 2005. The School of Medicine’s Class of 2000 chose Belitsky as its Commencement speaker.

Belitsky, who took office on July 1, succeeds Professor of Medicine Herbert S. Chase Jr., M.D., who announced last December that he would be stepping down at the end of the academic year.