Psychiatrists in La Jolla, CA

Photo of Mohammed Ahmed, Psychiatrist in La Jolla, CA
Mohammed Ahmed
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified
La Jolla, CA 92037
Symptoms such as depression and anxiety can be caused by chemical imbalances in a person’s brain. Medications can relieve these symptoms by changing brain chemicals that influence mood and thought patterns. Because every individual responds differently to every medication, a specialized neuropsychiatrist is the best equipped to prescribe and manage drug therapy. At Kaizen, our neuropsychiatrist considers the whole patient, including symptom and medication history. Dr. Ahmed also has a strong background with military, veteran, and active-duty patients suffering from PTSD, MDD, or Generalized Anxiety.
Symptoms such as depression and anxiety can be caused by chemical imbalances in a person’s brain. Medications can relieve these symptoms by changing brain chemicals that influence mood and thought patterns. Because every individual responds differently to every medication, a specialized neuropsychiatrist is the best equipped to prescribe and manage drug therapy. At Kaizen, our neuropsychiatrist considers the whole patient, including symptom and medication history. Dr. Ahmed also has a strong background with military, veteran, and active-duty patients suffering from PTSD, MDD, or Generalized Anxiety.
(844) 417-7209 View (844) 417-7209
Photo of Jennifer Nguyen, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner in La Jolla, CA
Jennifer Nguyen
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, PMHNP
Verified
La Jolla, CA 92037
I have a special interest in helping first-generation college students with medication management. As a first-generation American and first-generation college student, I use my experience and practice with the utmost cultural sensitivity.
I have a special interest in helping first-generation college students with medication management. As a first-generation American and first-generation college student, I use my experience and practice with the utmost cultural sensitivity.
(858) 365-8047 View (858) 365-8047
Photo of Kristin Lulich, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner in La Jolla, CA
Kristin Lulich
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, DNP, PMHNP
1 Endorsed
La Jolla, CA 92037
Kristin Lulich is a board certified psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner, providing care to children, adolescents, and adults. She received her MSN and DNP from the University of San Diego, and is an NEI Master Psychopharmacologist. Her experience has encompassed a variety of settings and specialties including inpatient, outpatient, crisis stabilization, consult-liaison psychiatry, and transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS). She has a strong belief in holistic care and creates individualized treatment plans using combinations of pharmacotherapy and individual therapy as well as complimentary and alternative approaches.
Kristin Lulich is a board certified psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner, providing care to children, adolescents, and adults. She received her MSN and DNP from the University of San Diego, and is an NEI Master Psychopharmacologist. Her experience has encompassed a variety of settings and specialties including inpatient, outpatient, crisis stabilization, consult-liaison psychiatry, and transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS). She has a strong belief in holistic care and creates individualized treatment plans using combinations of pharmacotherapy and individual therapy as well as complimentary and alternative approaches.
(858) 212-0924 View (858) 212-0924
Photo of Trenton Moyer, Psychiatrist in La Jolla, CA
Trenton Moyer
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified
La Jolla, CA 92037  (Online Only)
I have extensive experience providing medication-management to adults with psychiatric illness. Please visit my website moyermd.com for more detailed background.
I have extensive experience providing medication-management to adults with psychiatric illness. Please visit my website moyermd.com for more detailed background.
(858) 358-6938 View (858) 358-6938
Photo of Kelsey Stevens, Psychiatrist in La Jolla, CA
Kelsey Stevens
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified
La Jolla, CA 92037
I am both an adult and child trained psychiatrist, with specialized training in children and adolescents due to my passion for this age group. Our generation of youth has been faced with unimaginable stressors over the last decade and as a result has had some struggles in dealing with some of these challenges. My approach is to utilize my strong foundation in child development and then take the time to understand the unique nature of your child, appreciating their strengths and identifying the areas that have lead to their distress, in order to help them overcome this challenging time.
I am both an adult and child trained psychiatrist, with specialized training in children and adolescents due to my passion for this age group. Our generation of youth has been faced with unimaginable stressors over the last decade and as a result has had some struggles in dealing with some of these challenges. My approach is to utilize my strong foundation in child development and then take the time to understand the unique nature of your child, appreciating their strengths and identifying the areas that have lead to their distress, in order to help them overcome this challenging time.
(858) 504-6898 View (858) 504-6898
Photo of Donna Kashani, Psychiatrist in La Jolla, CA
Donna Kashani
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified
1 Endorsed
La Jolla, CA 92037
Donna Kashani, M.D. is a board-certified child, adolescent and adult psychiatrist who has worked with healthy and high functioning individuals in a private practice setting for over twenty-five years. Dr. Kashani has enjoyed providing a concierge model of care to her clients for the entirety of her practice. She works with individuals to identify their core competencies, with the focus being on recognizing patterns of behavior leading to personal bests in wellness, career and health. She has been ranked by Healthgrades as the #1 child and adolescent psychiatrist in the country since 2016.
Donna Kashani, M.D. is a board-certified child, adolescent and adult psychiatrist who has worked with healthy and high functioning individuals in a private practice setting for over twenty-five years. Dr. Kashani has enjoyed providing a concierge model of care to her clients for the entirety of her practice. She works with individuals to identify their core competencies, with the focus being on recognizing patterns of behavior leading to personal bests in wellness, career and health. She has been ranked by Healthgrades as the #1 child and adolescent psychiatrist in the country since 2016.
(480) 618-1130 View (480) 618-1130
Photo of Jason H Bennett, Psychiatrist in La Jolla, CA
Jason H Bennett
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified
La Jolla, CA 92037  (Online Only)
My practice as a psychiatrist and psychotherapist is influenced by an appreciation of the unique biological, psychological and social aspects that contribute to emotional well being and/or suffering of an individual person. Biological treatments like medications can be part of a solution but must be used rationally and carefully and are rarely "cures." Insight into the psychology of the individual, especially unexpressed thoughts, feelings and behaviors can be invaluable, even if hard won in psychotherapy. Attending to one's social environment in concert with the above areas is the final part of effective treatment.
My practice as a psychiatrist and psychotherapist is influenced by an appreciation of the unique biological, psychological and social aspects that contribute to emotional well being and/or suffering of an individual person. Biological treatments like medications can be part of a solution but must be used rationally and carefully and are rarely "cures." Insight into the psychology of the individual, especially unexpressed thoughts, feelings and behaviors can be invaluable, even if hard won in psychotherapy. Attending to one's social environment in concert with the above areas is the final part of effective treatment.
(858) 391-4937 View (858) 391-4937
Photo of Dr. Monica Federoff, Psychiatrist in La Jolla, CA
Dr. Monica Federoff
Psychiatrist, MD, PhD
Verified
La Jolla, CA 92037
Thank you for your interest in my practice. I am a board-certified adult psychiatrist practicing at the CalPsychiatry San Diego La Jolla office. I am passionate about treating patients holistically with a variety of psychiatric disorders including mood and anxiety disorders, women’s reproductive mental health, sleep disorders, OCD and ADHD. I value a personalized yet integrative approach to patient care and wellness, including both behavioral and pharmacologic based treatments. I obtained my MD from UC Irvine, PhD in Neurogenetics from University College London and completed my Psychiatry residency training at UC San Diego.
Thank you for your interest in my practice. I am a board-certified adult psychiatrist practicing at the CalPsychiatry San Diego La Jolla office. I am passionate about treating patients holistically with a variety of psychiatric disorders including mood and anxiety disorders, women’s reproductive mental health, sleep disorders, OCD and ADHD. I value a personalized yet integrative approach to patient care and wellness, including both behavioral and pharmacologic based treatments. I obtained my MD from UC Irvine, PhD in Neurogenetics from University College London and completed my Psychiatry residency training at UC San Diego.
(858) 901-8386 View (858) 901-8386
Photo of Dina Lim, Psychiatrist in La Jolla, CA
Dina Lim
Psychiatrist, DO
Verified
La Jolla, CA 92037
My practice is designed for individuals who have been struggling and frustrated by an inability to achieve their goals in life. Together, we will work on recovery, growth, and flourishing. I have advanced training in biological psychiatry and psychotherapy. My philosophy on psychopharmacology is a thoughtful and minimalistic approach. We will use medications to enhance your own mind and body’s own healing powers to reassert themselves.
My practice is designed for individuals who have been struggling and frustrated by an inability to achieve their goals in life. Together, we will work on recovery, growth, and flourishing. I have advanced training in biological psychiatry and psychotherapy. My philosophy on psychopharmacology is a thoughtful and minimalistic approach. We will use medications to enhance your own mind and body’s own healing powers to reassert themselves.
(858) 293-8124 View (858) 293-8124
Photo of Sonya Hintz, Psychiatrist in La Jolla, CA
Sonya Hintz
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified
La Jolla, CA 92037
As a psychodynamic psychiatrist, I am committed to help my patients find relief from their suffering and work toward their unique goals. I find that the psychodynamic perspective informs both short-term and long-term treatment collaborations, and encourages respect for the individual. I emphasize the "talk" part of therapy, and I integrate the use of medication where this seems helpful.
As a psychodynamic psychiatrist, I am committed to help my patients find relief from their suffering and work toward their unique goals. I find that the psychodynamic perspective informs both short-term and long-term treatment collaborations, and encourages respect for the individual. I emphasize the "talk" part of therapy, and I integrate the use of medication where this seems helpful.
(858) 240-4467 View (858) 240-4467
Photo of Megan Gotiangco, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner in La Jolla, CA
Megan Gotiangco
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, PMHNP, DNP
Verified
La Jolla, CA 92037
Dr. Megan Gotiangco is a Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner in California who has been practicing since 2019. She has a Doctoral degree in Psychiatric Nursing Practice from Oregon Health & Science University and a Bachelor in Nursing Science from the University of Pittsburgh. Dr. Gotiangco has experience working with a wide range of mental health disorders in various settings, including inpatient, outpatient, and emergency care. She is able to provide diagnostic clarity for patients initially seeking care and medication management supported by the latest research in the medical field.
Dr. Megan Gotiangco is a Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner in California who has been practicing since 2019. She has a Doctoral degree in Psychiatric Nursing Practice from Oregon Health & Science University and a Bachelor in Nursing Science from the University of Pittsburgh. Dr. Gotiangco has experience working with a wide range of mental health disorders in various settings, including inpatient, outpatient, and emergency care. She is able to provide diagnostic clarity for patients initially seeking care and medication management supported by the latest research in the medical field.
(858) 463-6790 View (858) 463-6790
Photo of Lauren Chow, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner in La Jolla, CA
Lauren Chow
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, PMHNP
Verified
La Jolla, CA 92037
I am a board-certified psychiatric-mental health nurse practitioner and help with anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, career counseling, domestic violence, hoarding, life transitions, self-esteem, school-related issues, trauma, and women’s issues. I also provide gender-affirming mental health care to members of the LGBTQIA+ community.
I am a board-certified psychiatric-mental health nurse practitioner and help with anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, career counseling, domestic violence, hoarding, life transitions, self-esteem, school-related issues, trauma, and women’s issues. I also provide gender-affirming mental health care to members of the LGBTQIA+ community.
(858) 365-8047 View (858) 365-8047
Photo of Rawan Alshaikh, Psychiatrist in La Jolla, CA
Rawan Alshaikh
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified
La Jolla, CA 92037
I strive to provide the time, respect, and support necessary for my patients to safely share and explore their concerns. As a professional in the healthcare field, I firmly believe that the approach taken towards caring for the patient has an integral role to play in patient outcomes. As such, I take an integrative approach to care; one that is patient-centered, healing oriented, and appreciative of the unique set of biological, psychological, social, and spiritual circumstances that contribute to an individual's life and experiences.
I strive to provide the time, respect, and support necessary for my patients to safely share and explore their concerns. As a professional in the healthcare field, I firmly believe that the approach taken towards caring for the patient has an integral role to play in patient outcomes. As such, I take an integrative approach to care; one that is patient-centered, healing oriented, and appreciative of the unique set of biological, psychological, social, and spiritual circumstances that contribute to an individual's life and experiences.
(858) 682-7248 View (858) 682-7248
Photo of Kris Ancho, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner in La Jolla, CA
Kris Ancho
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, PMHNP, BC
Verified
La Jolla, CA 92037
Kristoffer A. Ancho is a board-certified Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP-BC) by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC). He is a master’s prepared nurse practitioner with 10 years of experience as a psychiatric nurse. He has extensive experience caring for geriatrics, adults, adolescents, and children suffering from mental illness at Sharp Mesa Vista Hospital. He also provided care for veterans at the VA San Diego’s Neuromodulation Clinic. He is experienced with repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (rTMS), Esketamine (Spravato), and IV Ketamine infusion.
Kristoffer A. Ancho is a board-certified Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP-BC) by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC). He is a master’s prepared nurse practitioner with 10 years of experience as a psychiatric nurse. He has extensive experience caring for geriatrics, adults, adolescents, and children suffering from mental illness at Sharp Mesa Vista Hospital. He also provided care for veterans at the VA San Diego’s Neuromodulation Clinic. He is experienced with repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (rTMS), Esketamine (Spravato), and IV Ketamine infusion.
(858) 293-1562 View (858) 293-1562
Photo of Dr. Cuneyt Tegin, Psychiatrist in La Jolla, CA
Dr. Cuneyt Tegin
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified
La Jolla, CA 92037
I am a double board certified (in Psychiatry and Addiction Medicine) adult psychiatrist with strong psychopharmacology and psychotherapy(CBT, Psychodynamic Psychotherapy, Motivational Interviewing and Couples Therapy) background. I treat adult patients with variety of mental illnesses and substance use problems. I see patients in person and via video teleconferencing.
I am a double board certified (in Psychiatry and Addiction Medicine) adult psychiatrist with strong psychopharmacology and psychotherapy(CBT, Psychodynamic Psychotherapy, Motivational Interviewing and Couples Therapy) background. I treat adult patients with variety of mental illnesses and substance use problems. I see patients in person and via video teleconferencing.
(858) 834-1264 View (858) 834-1264
Photo of Bryan Hyler, Psychiatrist in La Jolla, CA
Bryan Hyler
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified
La Jolla, CA 92037
My working philosophy is simple, the patient comes first. That said, my approach to medicine is personalized, cordial, with a collaborative relationship and a touch of professional know how. My experience encompasses child, community, veteran and county mental health clinics. I also provide coverage for crisis houses, inpatient units, psychiatric emergency rooms and detention centers. I am a military veteran, UCLA alumni and Clinical Assistant Professor at University of California, Riverside. Call today for a free phone consultation for medication management of opiate addiction, manic, depressive, anxiety, psychotic and cognitive disorders.
My working philosophy is simple, the patient comes first. That said, my approach to medicine is personalized, cordial, with a collaborative relationship and a touch of professional know how. My experience encompasses child, community, veteran and county mental health clinics. I also provide coverage for crisis houses, inpatient units, psychiatric emergency rooms and detention centers. I am a military veteran, UCLA alumni and Clinical Assistant Professor at University of California, Riverside. Call today for a free phone consultation for medication management of opiate addiction, manic, depressive, anxiety, psychotic and cognitive disorders.
(760) 840-5284 View (760) 840-5284
Photo of Jack Perlov, Psychiatrist in La Jolla, CA
Jack Perlov
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified
La Jolla, CA 92037
Jack Perlov, M.D. is a board certified psychiatrist with over 30 years of experience as a University professor, psychotherapist and treating all ages and most conditions. He attended medical school at The University of Manitoba and went on to complete his psychiatric residency at the McMaster University Medical Center and University of Toronto in Ontario, Canada. Dr. Perlov completed his Child and Adolescent fellowship at the University of Toronto, where he also served as a Chief Resident at the Hospital for Sick Children.
Jack Perlov, M.D. is a board certified psychiatrist with over 30 years of experience as a University professor, psychotherapist and treating all ages and most conditions. He attended medical school at The University of Manitoba and went on to complete his psychiatric residency at the McMaster University Medical Center and University of Toronto in Ontario, Canada. Dr. Perlov completed his Child and Adolescent fellowship at the University of Toronto, where he also served as a Chief Resident at the Hospital for Sick Children.
(855) 743-2006 View (855) 743-2006
Photo of Katherine Lais, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner in La Jolla, CA
Katherine Lais
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, DNP, PMHNP
Verified
La Jolla, CA 92037
Dr. Lais is a board-certified Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP) treating all people, from children and adolescents to adults and older adults. Dr. Lais primarily worked with patients in community/public health clinics before working with the dedicated team at Mind Bloom La Jolla. She has extensive experience in treating PTSD, depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and addiction disorders. She has over 14 years of experience in the mental health field.
Dr. Lais is a board-certified Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP) treating all people, from children and adolescents to adults and older adults. Dr. Lais primarily worked with patients in community/public health clinics before working with the dedicated team at Mind Bloom La Jolla. She has extensive experience in treating PTSD, depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and addiction disorders. She has over 14 years of experience in the mental health field.
(858) 221-9759 View (858) 221-9759
Kaizen Brain Center
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified
La Jolla, CA 92037
Kaizen Brain Center was established to help patients with traumatic brain injury (TBI) and concussion who weren’t receiving proper medical care and were at risk of developing progressive neurological conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease, chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or Parkinson’s disease. Over the years, we’ve grown and now treat many more brain-related neurological and psychological conditions.
Kaizen Brain Center was established to help patients with traumatic brain injury (TBI) and concussion who weren’t receiving proper medical care and were at risk of developing progressive neurological conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease, chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or Parkinson’s disease. Over the years, we’ve grown and now treat many more brain-related neurological and psychological conditions.
(858) 371-7124 View (858) 371-7124
Photo of Dr. Sylvia Cartwright, Psychiatrist in La Jolla, CA
Dr. Sylvia Cartwright
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified
La Jolla, CA 92037  (Online Only)
I am here to help you on your journey to mental wellness and utilize both modern science and traditional healing to achieve your goals. Because you are an integrated body and mind, I use a holistic, i.e. integrative approach. We will proceed through a comprehensive evaluation, followed by a focused, solution-oriented treatment approach which combines therapy and, when appropriate, medications. I have experience working with patients from a variety of cultural and socio-economic backgrounds. All want to get better to live fuller lives. All are welcome.
I am here to help you on your journey to mental wellness and utilize both modern science and traditional healing to achieve your goals. Because you are an integrated body and mind, I use a holistic, i.e. integrative approach. We will proceed through a comprehensive evaluation, followed by a focused, solution-oriented treatment approach which combines therapy and, when appropriate, medications. I have experience working with patients from a variety of cultural and socio-economic backgrounds. All want to get better to live fuller lives. All are welcome.
(858) 251-1053 View (858) 251-1053

See more therapy options for La Jolla

How does your Psychiatrist compare?

Number of Psychiatrists in La Jolla, CA

90+

Average cost per session

$200

Psychiatrists in La Jolla, CA who prioritize treating:

100% Depression
98% Anxiety
76% ADHD
75% Bipolar Disorder
73% Medication Management
72% Trauma and PTSD
69% Obsessive-Compulsive (OCD)

Average years in practice

13 Years

Top 3 insurances accepted

92% Cigna and Evernorth
89% Aetna
85% UnitedHealthcare UHC | UBH

How Psychiatrists in La Jolla, CA see their clients

61% In Person and Online
39% Online Only

Gender breakdown

64% Female
36% Male

FAQs - About Psychiatrists and Psychiatric Nurses

How can I find a psychiatrist in La Jolla?

The Psychology Today Directory enables you to search specifically for psychiatrists, using the drop down provider menu in the navigation bar, by city or zip code, or by the name of the psychiatrist. Search results provide detailed profiles of professionals, including their treatment approach and areas of expertise. In addition, listings provide important information about each psychiatrist’s credentials, fees, payment options, and insurance affiliations. Directory users can select psychiatrists who meet an array of personally-desired criteria, such as familiarity with a specific community or condition.

What is the difference between a psychiatrist and a psychologist?

Psychiatrists are medical specialists who focus on understanding, diagnosing, and treating diseases of the brain and disorders of the mind and behavior. As physicians, psychiatrists are trained to recognize the often-subtle biological causes of mental disorders and to monitor the effects of mental disturbances on physical conditions, such as heart disease. Psychologists are especially attuned to the influence of early experience on development and behavior, emotional and cognitive processes, the nature of personality, and social functioning. They are also trained to deploy an array of psychological tests—IQ tests, personality tests, behavioral assessments—to gauge a person’s functioning.

What is a psychiatric nurse practitioner?

A psychiatric nurse practitioner, also known as a mental health nurse practitioner, is a registered nurse who completes advanced training in psychiatric care, earning either a master’s or doctoral degree in psychiatric nursing, and in the U.S., passes a national certification exam. Like psychiatrists, psychiatric nurse practitioners are trained to assess, diagnose, and treat mental health conditions. In some locales, psychiatric nurse practitioners can offer the full range of psychiatric care, including prescribing and managing medication. In other places, they must work in collaboration with a physician.

Is everyone in the Psychology Today Therapy Directory a licensed psychiatrist?

The Psychology Today directory lists providers who offer legitimate mental health services to the public, including psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers, and counselors. All psychiatrists listed in the directory have a valid license issued by the state(s) in which they practice and are certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology. Providers whose license or primary credential has been verified by Psychology Today are signified by a “Verified” symbol. Some individuals or organizations provide services for which their state or country does not offer licenses, such as pastoral counseling. They may be selectively included without the “Verified” seal.

Can a psychiatrist prescribe medication?

Psychiatrists are licensed medical doctors who are trained to recognize the many ways body processes affect the functioning of the brain and mind. As physicians, they can prescribe medication. Patients who are prescribed medications will typically need to continue to see a psychiatrist so that the effects of the medication can be monitored. For many psychiatric conditions, including common disorders such as anxiety and depression, the preferred treatment is combination therapy—medication accompanied by psychotherapy.

Do psychiatrists offer therapy?

Psychiatrists are generally trained in a number of treatment modalities, including psychotherapy, pharmacotherapy, and, increasingly, somatic therapies. Typically, psychiatrists make a diagnosis and determine a course of treatment based on chemical or biological factors, using lab tests, brain scans and physical and psychological evaluations. While psychotherapy may be used in the first session to aid in diagnosis, it is not typically utilized in subsequent visits. In fact, after the introductory session, most sessions with a psychiatrist may only be 15-20 minutes in length and are largely focused on medication management. Many psychiatrists who do not offer psychotherapy work collaboratively with psychologists and other mental health clinicians and can refer clients seeking talk therapy to those providers.

How do I know if I need a psychiatrist or a therapist?

It is not always easy to know which type of mental health practitioner to choose. Many people are unaware of the root of their mental or behavioral problem. One way many people learn which type of care is best for them is by seeing their primary care provider first. Depending on the nature and severity of the symptoms, the physician may review their medical history or perform medical tests to determine whether biological factors are involved before making a referral. It is not necessary for a person to know precisely what type of care they need in order to seek help. Many psychiatrists and psychologists refer clients to each other depending on client needs.

Do I need a referral to see a psychiatrist?

A referral to a psychiatrist is often not required. However, seeing your primary care physician first can be helpful and actually prove to be a shortcut to getting what you need. Your PCP may have a clear idea whether psychiatric help is needed and/or which kind of mental health care would be most beneficial and refer you to the right type of practitioner. For that reason alone, some psychiatrists require a referral. Further, many insurance plans require a referral from a PCP if they cover all of part of the cost of seeing a specialist; if, however, you are paying out of pocket, you may not need a referral. In any case, a referral may speed the process of securing an appointment with a psychiatrist, especially in areas where there is a shortage of mental health specialists and new patients face long waits for appointments.