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Wellness Initiatives

Our Commitment to Wellness

The Psychiatry Residency Program and Rush University Medical Center prioritize the wellness and resiliency of its residents. Collaborating with its psychiatry residents, the Psychiatry Residency Program leadership has generated multiple opportunities for its residents to engage in emotional, social, physical, and occupational wellness, on both an individual and group level. 

Residents have two retreats annually, as well as two half-day mindfulness sessions. These are planned by residents and for residents only.  In the last two years, the Psychiatry Residency program has developed and supported a resident-initiated and led Wellness program. Led by the Wellness Committee, comprised of representatives from all classes, the wellness program has developed a junior/senior class buddy system, free lunches supported by the department, wellness afternoons with a variety of wellness activities for all residents to enjoy together, and other initiatives aimed at supporting our hardworking and talented residents.


Residents at a pumpkin patch
Residents at a pumpkin patch


All psychiatry residents are encouraged to take part in a bi-monthly processing group. The processing group is only open to Rush psychiatry residents, is completely confidential, and is led by a highly experienced psychiatrist whose sole commitment to the Department of Psychiatry is through this processing group.

The residents meet with the department chair of psychiatry, program director, and associate program director on a monthly basis. Each residency class also meets with the program director and associate program director on a monthly basis over a complementary lunch. The purpose of these meetings is for residents and faculty members to check in with each other, be able to offer feedback about the program, and to trouble shoot any issues in real time.

On an individual basis, the program leadership also performs wellness check-ins during each resident’s semi-annual evaluations. During these check-ins, the leadership reviews and gives feedback on the residents’ wellness plans. The program leaders’ “doors” are always open to residents.

The program leadership encourages our residents to establish care and meet with health providers (i.e. primary care, mental health, dental, and other specialists). Recognizing that it is often challenging to obtain evening/weekend appointments with providers, we work with our faculty members to ensure that residents can protect time out of their workday to attend health appointments including their own psychotherapy.

In order to help prepare our residents for life after residency, the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences arranges lectures on such life skills as financial preparedness (e.g. loan forgiveness plans and saving for retirement), job interviewing, and contract negotiations.

The Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences holds monthly "GABA rounds" for residents, faculty, and staff to meet and relax with a favorite beverage or bar-menu appetizer.

The house staff lounge offers free coffee and fresh fruit/snacks and is a pleasant work environment promoting collegiality between residents of all specialties.

Rush University Medical Center offers mindfulness meditation on a weekly basis plus opportunities to participate in a mindfulness-based stress reduction course. There is a fitness center located on campus. Rush also has massage therapists on campus. The Medical Center maintains a private, staff/employee only outdoor garden on the 9th floor of the main hospital tower. The garden offers a gorgeous view of the Chicago skyline.

Residents with pumpkins on their heads
Residents on a boat tour
Residents on a boat tour


A resident running in the Chicago marathon
Residents spectating the Chicago marathon
Residents eating lunch
Contact Us

2150 W. Harrison St.
Chicago, IL 60612
Phone: (312) 563-1212

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