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Pediatric Psychology Clinic and Consultation Service (PPCS) Postdoctoral Training in Professional Psychology

The Pediatric Psychology Clinic and Consultation Service (PPCS) Program provides postdoctoral fellowship training in pediatric psychology. The fellowship provides advanced training in the provision of behavioral, cognitive-behavioral and psychological services to children and adolescents with health conditions requiring ongoing medical care, procedures, and disease management regimens. Services are provided to children/adolescents and their families to facilitate treatment adherence, behavioral and psychological coping and adjustment, pain and anxiety management, and optimize behavioral health outcomes. Fellows gain clinical experience in comprehensive behavioral assessment, as well as provision of behavioral and cognitive-behavioral interventions during individual therapy, parent training, family therapy, and consultation with medical and allied health care professionals. Common referral concerns include desensitization and behavioral training for medical procedures, addressing barriers to coping with new diagnoses, improving regimen adherence and disease self-management, and shaping functional behavior in child and adolescent rehabilitation patients (with or without intellectual and development disabilities). Commonly seen medical conditions include: traumatic brain injury, spinal cord injury, rehabilitation form CNS tumor or infection, chronic pain (e.g., CRPS, migraine), orthopedic injuries and surgeries, cerebral palsy, epilepsy, spina bifida, sickle cell disease, cystic fibrosis, pulmonary and sleep disorders, diabetes, obesity, and mental health conditions associated with these medical conditions.  Fellows work closely with faculty mentors and interdisciplinary teams in the care of patients with rare and/or highly complex medical, developmental and mental health presentations.

The PPCS training program prepares postdoctoral fellows to function as psychologists in a wide range of health care settings and across a treatment continuum including: the acute medical hospital (e.g., PICU, school-aged and adolescent units), inpatient rehabilitation hospital, outpatient rehabilitation day program, multiple pediatric subspecialty clinics, and the PPCS outpatient clinic. Fellowship is designed to increase both depth and scope of pediatric psychology experiences and skills before embarking on independent careers in the field on a trajectory toward leadership.   The fellowship provides in-depth and multifaceted training and experience in the context of a busy and specialized team of pediatric psychologists, doctoral interns, pre-doctoral externs, and interdisciplinary colleagues, with attention paid to the special training interests and needs of the fellow (i.e., interest in particular patient populations, settings, units, clinics, etc.).  Each fellow receives at least 2 hours of scheduled licensed supervision per week, as well as ongoing, “open-door” and as-needed supervision and case management from licensed psychologists. In addition, fellows participate in both group and “tiered” supervision as they provide peer review and mentoring to interns.

Key components of fellowship include:

  • Developing an emerging leadership role in a designated pediatric subspecialty unit or clinic (coordination of psychology services, administrative duties, related clinical research, mentoring of interns) while also participating in a range of other specialty clinics throughout the year.  Current primary clinics include: Johns Hopkins Hospital (JHH) Sickle Cell Disease Adolescent Transition, JHH Cystic Fibrosis, JHH Diabetes, JHH Pulmonary Sleep, KKI Neurodevelopmental Sleep, KKI Pain, KKI Rehabilitation, and KKI Concussion. Other opportunities may be available within the rehabilitation clinic or day treatment program, the JHH Weight Management, KKI Continence, and KKI Spina Bifida clinics.
  • Fellows also help to provide inpatient consultation-liaison services to JHH (acute medical) and KKI (interdisciplinary rehabilitation) inpatient children’s hospital units as primary therapist and may assist faculty psychologists with service administration and mentoring doctoral interns. 
  • Fellows maintain an outpatient caseload of diverse medical patients at two locations (main hospital campus and a busy satellite office location).
  • Depending on interest, opportunities are available to collaborate on scholarly research activities, administrative and systems-level activities, continuing education of interdisciplinary colleagues and outreach to disease-related family support groups.