CHILD AND ADOLESCENT PSYCHIATRY (also known as Pediatric Psychiatry or Child Psychiatry) is a branch of Psychiatry dealing with the diagnosis and treatment of mental health conditions in children and adolescents as well as the impact of their behaviors on families. Child and Adolescent Psychiatrists must complete four years of medical school followed by four years of residency (often in Neurology or General Psychiatry) and an additional two years of fellowship training in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. Pediatric Psychiatrists treat a variety of psychiatric conditions ranging from anger problems to severe mental illness. Child Psychiatrists work in a variety of settings, including private practices and pediatric medical centers, and they offer treatment via psychotherapy, counseling, and psychiatric medications. Child & Adolescent Psychiatrists who have attained the highest level of accreditation are Board Certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology, and hold a subspecialty certificate in Child & Adolescent Psychiatry.
Medical negligence claims against psychiatrists are infrequent but may stem from alleged failures to act upon symptoms resulting in patient suicide or harm to others. More commonly, Child Psychiatrists are brought into the legal system to advocate for children and to perform psychiatric examinations to assist courts with issues of juvenile competency, custodial rights, and guardianship.