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Drs. Keepers, Raj and Smith are recipients of 2010 OPA Access Awards

The Oregon Psychiatric Association (OPA) Access Award recognizes people who have made a significant impact in improving access to mental health care for Oregonians.

OHSU continues to provide Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) when most hospitals have discontinued their programs. The ECT Program at OHSU has accepted referrals from outside of OHSU and has benefited countless patients over the many years the program has been in effect. ECT is at times a lifesaving treatment for severe depression and other serious psychiatric conditions. Physicians that provide ECT services are often caring for some of the most seriously mentally ill patients and these are patient who have often run out of other treatment options.

Recipients for the 2010 OPA Access Awards


Dr. George Keepers

Chair, Department of Psychiatry
Carruthers Professor of Psychiatry
Director, Complex Neuropsychiatry Clinic
Director, Adult Attention Deficit Disorder Clinic

George A. Keepers, M.D., a 1977 graduate of Baylor College of Medicine completed residency training at OHSU in 1981. Subsequent to residency training he spent two years at the Warm Springs Indian Reservation in the National Health Scholarships Corp prior to joining the OHSU faculty as a staff psychiatrist at the Portland Veteran's Administration Medical Center (PVAMC). He left the PVAMC in 1991 as Chief of Inpatient Psychiatry to take the position of Director of Residency Training in Psychiatry at OHSU. In 2001 he was asked to serve as interim chair of the department.

In 2004, Dr. Keepers was named to the Carruthers Professorship in Psychiatry and appointed department chair. Dr. Keepers' earliest research interests included the psychopharmacological treatments of schizophrenia and side effects of these treatments, acute extra-pyramidal side effects (dystonia, akathisia and parkinsonism), tardive dyskinesia, and other aspects of neuropsychiatry and neuropsychopharmacology. His current clinical and research interests continue to be in the field of neuropsychiatry. He is the director of the Complex Neuropsychiatry Clinic and director of the Adult Attention Deficit Disorder Clinic.

Pritham Raj, MD

Medical Director, OHSU Internal Medicine Practice

Dr. Pritham Raj was nominated for his contribution to teaching internal medicine colleagues and residents. He has completed residencies in both internal medicine and psychiatry and instituted an internal medicine psychiatry teaching clinic which may become a national model. By instructing internal medicine residents in psychiatric skills and knowledge Dr. Raj has pioneered an additional way of addressing urgent access to care demands for those with mental and emotional disorders.

Dr. Raj specializes in the interface between General Internal Medicine and Psychiatry. In addition to the practice of general medicine, he has developed a novel med-psych teaching clinic, working with the Internal Medicine housestaff to care for patients using a “mind-body” approach. To date, Dr. Raj has done clinical research in obesity, depression in the critically-ill and mild cognitive impairment/dementia. He relocated to Portland in 2006 after serving on the faculty at Duke University Medical Center and currently serves as Medical Director of the OHSU Internal Medicine Practice.

In his spare time, Dr. Raj enjoys spending time with his family. He is a classical trumpet player who also enjoys writing and traveling. During the fall, you can usually expect to find Dr. Raj at FedEx Field in his hometown of Washington, D.C. rooting for his beloved Redskins.

Kevin Smith, MD

Assistant Professor of Psychiatry
Director of the Geriatric Psychiatry Clinic
A native of Nebraska, Dr. Smith received his degree in medicine from the University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha. He moved to Oregon for residency training in General Adult Psychiatry at OHSU and for fellowship training in Geriatric Psychiatry at OHSU and the Portland VA Medical Center. In addition to treating outpatients and participating in the medical education program at OHSU, he maintains a private practice in the field of geriatric psychiatry, specializing in treating the neuropsychiatric complications associated with dementia. He provides electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) evaluation and treatment at OHSU to all age groups. Dr. Smith was the past Chairman of the Internal Medicine Department, Medical Director of Senior Care Services and Director of Electroconvulsive Therapy Services at Eastmoreland Hospital. He is currently the president of Geriatric Psychiatry Associates Northwest, P.C., in Portland.

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