Omair Abbasi

Program Director's Welcome

Thank you for your interest in the Psychiatry Residency Program at Memorial Healthcare System. Our program welcomed our first class of residents in 2019 and, under the leadership of Dr. Jorge Luis Sotelo, we have celebrated many successes including the graduation of our inaugural class in June 2023. As a testament to the training environment, I would like to point out that two of our graduating residents have chosen to stay with Memorial and have joined as full-time faculty.

Along with the success of the residency program, we have also seen immense growth in our psychiatry department with the expansion of our outpatient community behavioral health center into a 17,000 sq ft multi-purpose space and the establishment of a well-appointed resident psychiatry clinic. In addition, we have almost doubled the number of faculty over the last three years with the arrival of several well-trained psychiatrists who are dedicated to teaching residents and creating highly skilled physicians for the future.

In 2021, I joined Memorial as the associate program director for the Psychiatry Residency Program. I gravitated towards Memorial due to its reputation in the region, the incredibly collegial work environment that valued its physicians, and a shared vision to take care of our community in a holistic manner. I was impressed by what Dr. Sotelo had developed in such a short amount of time and went to work building upon it. Dr. Sotelo and I made a great team and worked well with each other in the subsequent years.

In 2023, as we enter our next chapter of residency development, Dr. Sotelo and I decided to switch roles with myself becoming program director and Dr. Sotelo becoming associate program director. This would allow Dr. Sotelo to continue his work as the medical director of our rapidly expanding department while I could continue to navigate the program forward. Dr. Sotelo will continue to be a major figure in our department and I am truly honored to be given the privilege to take the reins.

We have been very fortunate over the years to recruit smart, curious, affable and kind residents who have demonstrated a dedication to help develop and shape the training program. We pride ourselves in the open level of communication we have with our residents and continue to regularly obtain input and implement changes every year. We are also very fortunate to have dynamic individuals on our faculty and staff who strive to create a formative training environment so that our residents may flourish and hone their skills.

Please navigate our residency website to learn more about our program and the many clinical and educational experiences it provides to ensure our residents are well prepared for a bright future in any clinical environment.

Omair Abbasi, MD, FAPA, FACLP

About Our Psychiatry Residency Program

Learn about the Psychiatry Residency Program at Memorial Healthcare System.

The Psychiatry Residency Program at Memorial Healthcare System reflects the motto of the overall institution which is to “heal the mind, body, and spirit of those we touch.” Our strongest asset are our colleagues and the communities we serve.

Our small program size allows us to invest in each of our trainees and help them develop into astute, caring, well-rounded psychiatrists while pursuing their individual interests. Our teaching faculty consists of well-trained physicians from diverse backgrounds who are invested in educating our residents. The work environment is warm, friendly, and collegial. The GME programs at Memorial Health System are strongly supported by the institution at large and residents are treated as an integral part of the healthcare system.

In addition to graduate medical education, we are a community-based university-affiliated program and residents are involved with teaching medical students throughout the year. We are affiliated with Florida Atlantic University, Florida International University, and the University of Miami.

  • We are a Community-Based University Affiliated Program. The program is sponsored by the Memorial Healthcare System. The System trains hundreds of medical students each year and is affiliated with Florida Atlantic University (FAU), Florida International University (FIU), and Nova Southeastern University College Of Osteopathic Medicine.
  • The Psychiatry Residency Program is based at Memorial Regional Hospital, the flagship hospital of the Memorial Healthcare System. It consists of rotations in Memorial Regional Hospital’s Center for Behavioral Health (CBH) and the Outpatient Behavioral Health Center (OBHC).
  • Memorial Regional Hospital’s CBH has three adult inpatient psychiatry units (a total of 53 beds) and one child and adolescent psychiatry inpatient unit (a total of 12 beds) and residents will rotate through all of these sites.
  • The OBHC provides many opportunities for residents to be exposed to outpatient opportunities, such as medication management clinics, intensive outpatient programs, dialectical behavioral therapy, a drop-in center, and an integrated primary care clinic, just to name a few.
  • Residents will have exposure to cutting-edge programs, including: an esketamine clinic for the treatment of refractory depressive disorders, Long-Acting Therapy (LAT) program to treat individuals with severe chronic mental illness with long-acting depot psychotropic medications, and the Mothers in Recovery (MIR), Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT), and Behavioral Health Transitions (BHT) programs to treat individuals with opioid use disorders.
  • Great patient diversity and a wide range of psychopathology, which rivals that of any large inner city hospital.
  • Memorial Healthcare system has an Office of Human Research with its own Institutional Review Board (IRB). Dr. Candice Sareli, our Chief Medical Research Officer, and her team will assist residents with the development of their research and with their submission to the IRB. Participation in some form of scholarly activity is mandatory for graduation from the program. In addition, residents will be trained in the basic concepts of quality improvement and patient safety and will have the opportunity to participate in quality improvement projects during their training.
  • Our small program allows us to get to know each of our residents on a personal level and to provide a learning environment rich with camaraderie and with the opportunity to develop one-on-one relationships with colleagues, faculty and mentors.

Community Sites and Services

Memorial Healthcare System has been a Broward county staple for community health since its establishment in 1951. The Psychiatry Residency program is based at Memorial Regional Hospital, the flagship hospital of the Memorial Healthcare System and the third largest public hospital in the United States. Within the hospital exists the Center for Behavioral Health – a 65 bed inpatient psychiatry unit consisting of 3 adult units (53 beds) and one child and adolescent unit (12 beds). Here, residents have the opportunity to encounter a variety of psychiatric disorders in a diverse array of patients which rivals that of any large metropolitan hospital.

In addition to the Center for Behavioral Health, Memorial Healthcare System also has the Outpatient Behavioral Health Center. This center provides many opportunities for residents to be exposed to outpatient opportunities, such as medication management clinics, intensive outpatient programs, dialectical behavioral therapy, a community drop-in center, and an integrated primary care clinic, just to name a few.

Residents will also have exposure to cutting-edge programs, including:

  • Long-Acting Therapy (LAT): Program treats individuals with severe chronic mental illness with long-acting depot psychotropic medications.
  • Esketamine Clinic: For the treatment of individuals with refractory depressive disorder.
  • Mothers in Recovery (MIR): Helps mother and baby safely withdraw from substances and supports mom meet recovery goals.
  • Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT): Treatment for people with severe substance use disorders.
  • Behavioral Health Transitions (BHT): Services designed to reduce readmissions/adverse events for patients with behavioral health conditions treated in the ER or inpatient.

Meet The Artists Of the Rebel's Drop-In Center

Meet some of the artists at Rebel's Drop-In Center

Memorial Outpatient Behavioral Health Services

Our mental health professionals diagnosis and treat mental illnesses, psychiatric disorders, and substance abuse issues, including crisis support and intervention.
Memorial Regional Hospital exterior

About Memorial Regional Hospital

Memorial Regional Hospital (MRH) is the flagship facility of MHS and one of the largest hospitals in Florida. Our 797-bed facility offers extensive and diverse health care services and is one of only seven American College of Surgeons designated Level 1 Trauma Centers in the entire state of Florida.

Among its renowned programs are:

See awards given to Memorial Healthcare System.

Center for Behavioral Health (CBH) at Memorial Regional Hospital

  • Inpatient Psychiatric Admissions in Fiscal Year 2017: 2,526 Adults and 729 Children and Adolescents
  • Patients seen in the psychiatric emergency department in a recent 12-month cycle: 5,376
  • Patients seen in the Behavioral Health Unit and either admitted to a medical floor or discharged home in a recent 12-month cycle: 972

Outpatient Behavioral Health Center (OBHC)

Clinicians in the OBHC offer a wide range of outpatient behavioral health services for adults including:

  • Addiction consultation
  • Ambulatory detoxification program
  • Diagnostic evaluation
  • Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT)
  • Group therapies for trauma resolution and chronic pain
  • Family support services
  • Individual psychotherapy
  • Mental health and substance abuse services for persons with HIV/AIDS
  • Mood and anxiety disorders treatment (Choices Program)
  • Outpatient detoxification
  • Outpatient treatment of alcohol and drug abuse
  • Peer mentoring/recovery support (Rebel’s Drop-In Center)
  • Psychopharmacology consultation
  • Second opinion and consultative psychiatric services
  • Trauma information and resolution therapy

Psychotherapy Services

Our team of licensed psychotherapists, mental health counselors and certified peer specialists provide effective psychotherapy services to assist individuals with a variety of issues including:

  • Anger management
  • Anxiety (including social anxiety)
  • Coping with stress
  • Depression
  • Emotional distress
  • Grief and loss
  • Interpersonal conflict
  • Low self-esteem
  • Relationship problems
  • Stress management/coping with stress

Our licensed and expertly trained psychotherapists offer a variety of treatment strategies and programs including:

  • Cognitive behavioral therapy
  • Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT)
  • Family therapy
  • Group therapy
  • Individual psychotherapy
  • Motivational interviewing
  • Solution-focused techniques
  • Trauma information and resolution therapy

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