College of Medicine announces Seth S. Himelhoch, MD, as chair of psychiatry

Seth S. Himelhoch, MD, MPH, will be the College of Medicine’s chair of psychiatry beginning Jan. 1, 2018. He will play a vital role in the college’s mission to impact the standards and delivery of care related to mental health and substance use disorders in the commonwealth.

Himelhoch comes to UK from the University of Maryland, where he served as a professor of psychiatry. In research, he has focused on developing and testing interventions to improve access to and outcomes of care for people with co-occurring psychiatric and drug use disorders. As a fellow of the Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholars Program, he is working to develop interventions for rural communities suffering from the consequences of the opiate epidemic.

As chair, Himelhoch will establish junior faculty mentoring opportunities, increase research efforts, and explore telepsychiatry services. He will also establish the Division of Substance Abuse Treatment, an administrative resource for all substance use clinical services at UK that will drive the growth of treatment delivery models.

In coordination with the Office of the EVPHA and institutions throughout the commonwealth, Himelhoch will develop a fully integrated system of care for patients with behavioral health and substance use disorders across the enterprise.

As substance use and addiction disorders remain a leading concern for Kentucky, Himelhoch and his department will partner with behavioral science, the Center on Drug and Alcohol Research, Eastern State Hospital and others to establish a Center on Mental Health and Substance Use with the goal of further developing research activities across the university.