Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) at George Mason University offers time limited psychiatry services. Only students who are enrolled at Mason and are actively involved in individual counseling/case management at CAPS may be eligible to receive psychiatric services. On some occasions, students require more intensive/specialized psychiatric treatment that is beyond the scope of what we can provide. If this occurs, we will work with you to establish care with a psychiatric provider in the community.
Psychiatry services are provided by appointment only. There are no psychiatry appointments after hours or on weekends. If you are experiencing a psychiatric/medical emergency, call 911 or go to the nearest Emergency Room. Please note, the psychiatrist is at CAPS on a part-time basis.
If you would like to make an appointment with the psychiatrist at CAPS for an evaluation, you need to first schedule an Initial Consultation appointment with a CAPS clinician. The clinician will assess your situation and, depending on your needs, determine if a psychiatric evaluation is clinically appropriate and/or recommended, the clinician will assist you in making an appointment with the CAPS psychiatrist or with a psychiatric provider in the community.
The first appointment for a psychiatric evaluation is scheduled for 90 minutes. During the initial evaluation, the psychiatrist will review your concerns and will develop a preliminary treatment plan. If you agree with the treatment plan, then a decision about ongoing treatment, possibly involving the use of a medication, will be discussed. Subsequent appointments will then be scheduled to discuss how well the medication is working and if any modifications are needed.
You will continue to be monitored by the psychiatrist as long as you are compliant with your treatment plan, enrolled at Mason and receiving therapy/case management at CAPS. Follow-up appointments with the psychiatrist are usually 20-30 minutes in length. Once stable on a medication regimen, as deemed by the psychiatrist, you will be provided with referrals to psychiatric providers in the community for ongoing medication management.
ADHD Evaluation and/or Management
If you have been previously diagnosed with ADHD, you must provide documentation of the diagnosis from the clinician who made the diagnosis in order to be considered for medication treatment at CAPS. Documentation must be in the form of an evaluation, treatment summary and neuropsychological testing supporting the diagnosis. You will have to ask your previous provider to send us the documentation for review to determine whether it is adequate. If the documentation is deemed insufficient, then neuropsychological testing will be required prior to meeting with a CAPS psychiatrist for further evaluation. If, after the neuropsychiatric evaluation is complete, it is the opinion of the psychiatrist at CAPS that you might have ADHD, then the decision to medicate and what kind of medication to use will be made by the psychiatrist. It is our practice to choose the appropriate medication with the least potential for abuse. The psychiatric evaluation may take several weeks and is in no way a guarantee that medication management will occur. If you do not wish to wait for this evaluation, then a list of referrals for mental health providers in the community will be provided.