MUSC Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences

The Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences is among the top 10 nationally ranked research departments of psychiatry in the United States. This page is not a patient forum - if you have patient-related questions or comments please contact (843) 792-9888.

Photos from MUSC Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences's post

No summer slump: Explosive growth, new age group affected in latest Tri-county COVID assessment

Did you know there has been an increase in COVID-19 infections among people age 30 and below in the tri-county area?
Michael Sweat, Ph.D., a professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, directs MUSC’s COVID-19 Epidemiology Intelligence Project. In an update on July 2nd, Dr. Sweat noted an increase in younger people showing up as new infections being diagnosed right now in Charleston, Berkeley, and Dorchester counties.

He has a theory about that. “I think older people are being more cautious because they’re more concerned about the impact of the coronavirus. Young people like to get out and interact with people. They’ve been pent-up for a long time. I think when the state reopening was approved, people just got out. And I believe a lot of younger people got infected. Now we’re seeing this wave of them coming in to be tested.”

Sweat said young people are less likely than older people to have severe symptoms. That’s good news for them. But it also means there may be even more of them in the Lowcountry who aren’t getting tested because they don’t realize they have the virus. “I anticipate we’re going to start seeing older people catching it from younger people. That’s what’s likely to happen, particularly within households. About 60% of cases diagnosed are from interhouse transmission.”

But Sweat said reinstituting a strict lockdown is not inevitable. “I have faith in people that they’re going to change their behavior. They’ll learn the seriousness from this outbreak. The main thing that historically gets people to change behavior is personal knowledge of people affected. That’s going to happen more and more as we see larger numbers.” New COVID-19 epidemiology report shows explosive growth, especially among young adults in Charleston area.

Home -

NAMI Connection and NAMI Family Support Offered Online
Social distancing does not mean that you have to go through difficult times alone. NAMI is here to help! We are offering NAMI Family Support and NAMI Connection online.

NAMI Connection Support is offered every Monday at 6PM until further notice.

NAMI Family Support Group is offered the 2nd and 4th Thursdays of the month at 6PM until further notice.

By clicking the link you can sign up to receive the meeting login information or you can email us at [email protected] or call/text 843-284-3091.

Virtual Trivia Night with PAR

Missing game night with your friends? Join PAR for online Trivia Night!

Thursday, July 30, 2020
7:00 PM – 8:30 PM EDT

People Against Rape (PAR) has provided support and services to victims of sexual violence for over 45 years in Berkeley, Charleston, and Dorchester counties. Even during this time of uncertainty. And while the work they do is serious, they also understand that joy is an act of resistance.

To that end, PAR is hosting a virtual trivia night, because we could all use some laughs, some fun, and some healthy competition.

So, grab a friend or two and play for the title of PAR Trivia Champ!

Link will be forwarded upon registration. Love trivia? Then you'll love Trivia Night with PAR!

Suzanne Thomas, Ph.D., will become the university’s Associate Provost for Educational Planning and Effectiveness effective July 1, 2020. Dr. Thomas is a tenured professor in the College of Medicine’s Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences and MUSC’s Assistant Provost for Institutional Effectiveness. Please join us in congratulating and welcoming Dr. Thomas to this important new leadership position!

Cystic fibrosis (CF) is a life-limiting genetic condition affecting respiratory, digestive, and other organs via mutations in the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) gene. People with CF and other chronic diseases are at heightened risk for anxiety, depression, and other emotional concerns. The CF Foundation (CFF) recommends that comprehensive CF care be delivered by interdisciplinary teams, including mental health providers, and that emotional wellbeing concerns should be identified and treated within this team approach.

Dr. Lillian Christon, a clinical health psychologist in the Division of Biobehavioral Medicine, leads the MUSC CF Center’s Emotional Health and Wellness Program, along with the team genetic counselor Kimberly Foil, MS, CGC, and in collaboration with a number of other team members. Dr. Christon is integrated into both the pediatric and adult CF clinics and sees patients and caregivers alongside the interdisciplinary CF care teams. She directs annual mental health screening for anxiety and depression, conducts brief evidence-based psychological and behavioral assessment and prevention/intervention in clinic and on the medical inpatient units, and provides referrals for further treatment for pediatric CF patients and their caregivers, and adult CF patients. When more intensive psychological and psychiatric interventions are needed, CF patients and caregivers are referred to providers in the Behavioral Medicine Clinic at MUSC. “One of the best parts of working within CF care is the strong relationship foundation formed with patients. The teams are exceptional and get to know patients holistically - a great deal of trust is built over time, which is critical as CF can be such a tough disease to manage and cope with. Integrating mental health into this team framework has helped to normalize and destigmatize seeking services when patients need it,” shares Dr. Christon.

Dr. Christon is also a member of the MUSC’s CF Lung Transplant Transition Regional Dissemination Network improvement group, working with an interdisciplinary team to improve the lung transplant referral process for CF patients, in addition to other quality improvement initiatives within the center. She serves on the national CFF Education Committee and is a member of the CFF consensus guideline committee for post-lung transplant care for people with CF. The CF Emotional Health and Wellness Program has been a success, and Dr. Christon has been asked to develop a similar program for the MUSC Nontuberculous Mycobacteria (NTM) Program, which focuses on treating NTM-caused pulmonary infections and other manifestations with an interdisciplinary approach.

These integrated services are a wonderful example of how the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences provides support to some of the most complex chronic disease populations at MUSC. The Behavioral Medicine Clinic also offers integrated/co-located psychology services and therapy groups within cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation, bariatric surgery, transplant surgery, Hollings Cancer Center, and pain management, to name a few!

Quitting Smoking during the Pandemic

Dr. Kenneth Michael Cummings was recently interviewed about a plan to quit smoking during the pandemic and the many benefits of quitting (plus practice tips to help succeed at quitting). Dr. Cummings is a Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences he is involved in research related to tobacco use prevention and smoking cessation at MUSC.

The interview, Quitting Smoking During the Pandemic, can be accessed here: This week Bobbi Conner talks with Dr. Kenneth Michael Cummings about a plan to quit smoking during the pandemic and a look at the many benefits of quitting

Did you know that July is National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month?
Despite advances in health equity, disparities in mental health care persist. The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) reports that racial and ethnic minority groups in the U.S. are less likely to have access to mental health services, less likely to use community mental health services, more likely to use emergency departments, and more likely to receive lower quality care. Poor mental health care access and quality of care contribute to poor mental health outcomes, including suicide, among racial and ethnic minority populations.

According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and the CDC:
In 2017, 10.5% (3.5 million) of young adults age 18 to 25 had serious thoughts of suicide including 8.3% of non-Hispanic blacks and 9.2% of Hispanics.
In 2017, 7.5% (2.5 million) of young adults age 18 to 25 had a serious mental illness including 7.6% of non-Hispanic Asians, 5.7% of Hispanics and 4.6% of non-Hispanic blacks.
Feelings of anxiety and other signs of stress may become more pronounced during a global pandemic.
People in some racial and ethnic minority groups may respond more strongly to the stress of a pandemic or crisis.
During the month of July, the HHS Office of Minority Health (OMH) will continue to highlight its free and accredited e-learning program: Improving Cultural Competency for Behavioral Health Professionals. This program is part of OMH’s Think Cultural Health E-learning courses, which are developed to help health professionals develop the knowledge and skills to deliver culturally and linguistically appropriate services. OMH operates the Think Cultural Health website and provides free e-learning courses in support of the National Standards for Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services in Health and Health Care (National CLAS Standards).

During July, OMH will also highlight resources to support people’s mental and emotional wellbeing while following the social distancing guidelines established by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to stop the spread of COVID-19.

OMH encourages all of its partners to join in educating communities about the importance of mental healthcare and treatment and to help break down barriers, such as negative perceptions about mental illness

Photos from MUSC Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences's post

The following resource provides MUSC Health lab and testing options pertaining to COVID-19. Included on this page is information regarding drive-thru and “pop-up” mobile COVID testing locations, antibody or serology tests, drive-in lab and nurse visits, and original/classic lab testing.,%20Mobile,%20and%20External%20Testing%20Sites.aspx

Alcohol Consumption during Stressful Times (Including the Pandemic)

Dr. Josh Smith was recently interviewed about the increase in risk for developing an alcohol problem during stressful times and provided tips for reducing alcohol consumption. Dr. Smith is an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences and he is the Clinical Director of the Center for Drug and Alcohol Programs at MUSC. This week Bobbi Conner talks with Dr. Josh Smith about the increase in risk for developing an alcohol problem during stressful times, and tips for reducing

Please welcome Mack Shieder as our new Director of Nursing for the MH ICCE! Many of you may know Mack from his days on 2North. He is currently the Director of Psychiatric Nursing at Trident Medical Center and we are excited to welcome him back to MUSC!

Please join us in welcoming Nicole Scruggs as our new HR Manager! She will be helping us improve many of our workflows and we’re excited for her to get started. Nicole moved to Charleston about four and a half years ago and has been with MUSC for three and a half years. She enjoys going to the beach and working out at OrangeTheory in her free time.

[07/09/20]   Congratulations to the winners of Innovation Week’s Shark Tank!!!

Poster 23-C: Listening to Women (LTW) – A Mental Health and Substance Use Screening and Treatment Program for Pregnant & Postpartum Women
Constance Guille, Lauren Shipley, Erin Quigley, Nicole Dietrich, Lizmarie Maldonado, Annie Simpson, Anna Kerr, Rubin Aujla, Ryan Kruis, Tomoko Goddard, Kathryn King

Poster 6-E: Care and Safety Resource (CSR) Avatar
Brittany Meibers, Lindsey De Jesus, Natasha Smalls, Kai Jenkins, Heather Toeppner, April Roscoe, Corrie Scharrenberg, Elizabeth Glover, David G. Bundy

Poster 4-R: The Future Preprocedural Planning for Aortic Valve Disease
Andres F. Abadia, Jeremy R. Burt, Brian C. Dean, Richard Bayer, U. Joseph Schoepf

Ask Congress to Extend Medicare Telehealth Flexibilities

Telehealth is helping to ensure that Medicare patients receive timely and crucial mental health services. Older Americans are especially reliant on this telehealth expansion as it allows for audio-only services, treatment of beneficiaries in their homes and removes restrictions of care due to location. Many Medicare patients are isolated at home or in nursing facilities and living in rural areas without adequate provider networks or reliable broadband service. Clinical psychologists have shared heart-wrenching stories with the Psychology Advocacy Network about how important these services are to their patients.

Because need for telehealth and audio-only services access will remain long after the COVID-19 emergency period, the Psychology Advocacy Network is urging a 12-month extension of telehealth coverage of psychological services to continue providing flexibility to patients, and to give Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and Congress time to collect and evaluate data and potentially make some telehealth expansions permanent.

Whether or not you are a Medicare provider, we urge you to contact your members of Congress. We strongly encourage you to put this message into your own words as much as possible, and to include an example or two from your own practice about the importance of telehealth services coverage. Thank you for taking part in the more than 21,700 messages sent asking for audio-only telehealth services coverage in Medicare.  Through your messages you and your colleagues convinced the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to...

Suzanne Thomas, Ph.D., will become the university’s Associate Provost for Educational Planning and Effectiveness effective July 1, 2020. Dr. Thomas is a tenured professor in the College of Medicine’s Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences and MUSC’s Assistant Provost for Institutional Effectiveness. Please join us in congratulating and welcoming Dr. Thomas to this important new leadership position!

June 17, 2020 marked five years since the Mother Emanuel AME Church shooting occurred in Charleston, in which the lives of five clergy and four church members were mercilessly taken during Bible study. The lives lost became collectively known as the Emanuel 9.

In June 2016, the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Science’s National Crime Victims Research and Treatment Center (NCVC) was awarded a grant in the amount of $3.6 million from the National Office of Victims of Crime (OVC) to fund treatment and related services for persons significantly impacted by the June 17, 2015 fatal shooting.

This week, we remember the victims and their families, survivors, the Mother Emanuel congregation, first responders, and others within the community who were adversely impacted by this tragedy.

Helping Pregnant Women & New Moms with Mental Health Issues during the Pandemic

Dr. Connie Guille’s MUSC Public Radio interview is being broadcast throughout this week on SC Public Radio stations and is also available as a podcast. The interview, Helping Pregnant Women & New Moms with Mental Health Issues during the Pandemic, can be accessed here. This week Bobbi Conner talks with Dr. Connie Guille about helping pregnant women and new moms manage mental health problems during the pandemic. Dr. Guille

Families cope with grief during 'emotional and spiritual' coronavirus crisis

Dr. Alyssa Rheingold was interviewed by The Post and Courier for an article titled, Families Cope with Grief During ‘Emotional and Spiritual’ Coronavirus Crisis. The article can be accessed here. The reasons for our collective grief are obvious: a pandemic, economic upheaval, widespread uncertainty, persistent and devastating racism, police brutality.

NIMH » Men and Mental Health

While mental illness affects both men and women, men are less likely to seek mental health treatment. However, men are more likely to die by suicide than women, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Recognizing the signs that you or someone you love may have a mental health condition is the first step toward getting treatment. The earlier that treatment begins, the more effective it can be.

Want your school to be the top-listed School/college in Charleston?

Click here to claim your Sponsored Listing.

Videos (show all)

Sip a Little, Change a Latte




67 President St
Charleston, SC
Other Charleston schools & colleges (show all)
Charleston PJ Library and PJ Our Way Charleston PJ Library and PJ Our Way
176 Croghan Spur, Ste 100
Charleston, 29407

PJ Library sends Jewish-content books monthly to children from 6 months to 8-years-old for FREE! Sign up at

Westminster Presbyterian Preschool in Charleston, SC Westminster Presbyterian Preschool in Charleston, SC
1157 Sam Rittenberg Blvd
Charleston, 29407

Westminster Presbyterian Preschool in Charleston enrolls approximately 100 students. We accept children from 18 months to 4K.

Citadel (Charleston) Citadel (Charleston)
Charleston, 29403

Zero Xcuses Podcast Zero Xcuses Podcast
Charleston, 29414

Building discipline so you can regain control over your time, build wealth, improve your health and form meaningful connections.

Cultural Arts Center Charleston Cultural Arts Center Charleston
2070 Sam Rittenberg Blvd. Suite 112
Charleston, 29407

Bridging Charleston to Broadway with quality musical productions, unparalleled training and performing experiences for youth and adults. We are an artful space for everyone in the community!

Wellness Five Wellness Five
14 Lockwood Drive
Charleston, 29401

Don't Be Perfect, Just Be Better... It's the premise of everything we do at Wellness Five to help our clients thrive, not just survive.

Harbor View Elementary School PTA (Parent Teacher Association) Harbor View Elementary School PTA (Parent Teacher Association)
1576 Harbor View Rd
Charleston, 29412

The Harbor View PTA is comprised of parents and teachers devoted to the educational success of our children.

Another Church in Charleston - House Church Another Church in Charleston - House Church
Charleston, 29414

House church open to all, centered around community, conversations, and giving.

Stono Park Elementary Stono Park Elementary
1699 Garden St
Charleston, 29407

Welcome to Stono Park Elementary's page! We are a public elementary school in Charleston, SC educating students in the West Ashley region.

College of Charleston Visual Arts Club College of Charleston Visual Arts Club
54 Saint Philip St
Charleston, 29424

A community for visual artists, arts managers, art historians and art enthusiasts at the College of Charleston, promoting artistic talent and encouraging fellowship and collaboration among arts students.

GrantsNet of Charleston GrantsNet of Charleston
727 E Bay St
Charleston, 29403

GrantsNet Of Charleston is a non profit organization specializing in aiding individuals and businesses connect the pieces in their lives.