Yale accredited to train specialists in addiction medicine

Yale University has been newly accredited to train physicians in the practice of addiction medicine. Yale’s program is among eight new fellowship programs at leading medical institutions that are receiving this accreditation.

The accreditation was issued by the American Board of Addiction Medicine (ABAM) Foundation. Physicians who complete a fellowship are eligible to become board-certified in addiction medicine.

Addiction medicine is a specialty that deals with the prevention and treatment of addictive disorders, and the medical and psychiatric complications of addiction. While physician training in addiction psychiatry has been available for psychiatrists for a number of years, specialist addiction training for physicians from other specialties such as internal medicine and emergency medicine has been lacking.

“The need for additional physicians who are trained as addiction specialists is great, as there is a great nationwide shortage of such individuals,” said Dr. Patrick O’Connor, professor and chief of general internal medicine at Yale School of Medicine and president-elect of ABAM. “With Yale’s nationally recognized strengths in substance abuse in internal and emergency medicine, along with our strong partnership with Yale’s outstanding psychiatry program, we are well positioned to lead the field of addiction in training as well as in research and clinical care.”

Yale School of Medicine is currently ranked first by U.S. News and World Report in the field of drug and alcohol abuse.

The program will be based at Yale-New Haven Hospital and led by Dr. Jeanette Tetrault, assistant professor of general internal medicine at Yale School of Medicine. “We are looking forward to offering this unique training opportunity at Yale and to working closely with the well-established addiction psychiatry training program,” Tetrault said. That program is led by Dr. Isemene Petrakis, professor of psychiatry. “Most importantly,” Tetrault added, “we are looking forward to addressing the shortage of addiction-trained physicians in an effort to improve the care of patients suffering from substance use and its complications.”