Psychiatrists in Hawaii

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Photo of Mariam Myers - Ohanapsych, APRN, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
Mariam Myers - Ohanapsych
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, APRN
Verified Verified
Haiku, HI 96708  (Online Only)
As a resident of Maui for the past 10 years, Mariam has focused on acute psychiatric care, correctional and addiction nursing. As a PMHNP-BC she will take care of all ages and psychiatric conditions. She will work with you to achieve the goals that are important to you.
As a resident of Maui for the past 10 years, Mariam has focused on acute psychiatric care, correctional and addiction nursing. As a PMHNP-BC she will take care of all ages and psychiatric conditions. She will work with you to achieve the goals that are important to you.
(808) 207-6319 View (808) 207-6319
Photo of Dennis D' Arcy Banks, MD, JD, Psychiatrist
Dennis D' Arcy Banks
Psychiatrist, MD, JD
Verified Verified
Wailea, HI 96753
I currently practice psychiatry in Wailea,Hawaii as Founder/Chairman of Maui Psychiatry LLC.Since 1999 I was Consulting Psychiatrist for the Greenwich,Connecticut Board of Education. I graduated Yale Medical School and completed residency training at Stanford University Hospital and the McAuley Neuropsychiatric Institute in San Francisco. My primary objective as a psychiatrist is to accurately assess whatever challenges are being faced by my patients and to address them as quickly and sympathetically as possible.I am available for Skype and FaceTime appointments and offer a Concierge Program for individuals who desire or require a more intensive therapeutic experience.
I currently practice psychiatry in Wailea,Hawaii as Founder/Chairman of Maui Psychiatry LLC.Since 1999 I was Consulting Psychiatrist for the Greenwich,Connecticut Board of Education. I graduated Yale Medical School and completed residency training at Stanford University Hospital and the McAuley Neuropsychiatric Institute in San Francisco. My primary objective as a psychiatrist is to accurately assess whatever challenges are being faced by my patients and to address them as quickly and sympathetically as possible.I am available for Skype and FaceTime appointments and offer a Concierge Program for individuals who desire or require a more intensive therapeutic experience.
(808) 670-3289 View (808) 670-3289
Photo of Tara Valenzuela, DNP, PMHNP, BC, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
Tara Valenzuela
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, DNP, PMHNP, BC
Verified Verified
Honolulu, HI 96813
Dr. Tara Valenzuela DNP, PMHNP-BC, is a mental health enthusiast, a board-certified Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner, and a professor of psychiatric nursing. She treats mental health across the lifespan. Her treatments are healing-centered, education-forward, and person-focused. This involves customized strategies for medication management. She aligns with the idea that Nursing is the facilitation of healing and works to provide intervention, education, and advocacy.
Dr. Tara Valenzuela DNP, PMHNP-BC, is a mental health enthusiast, a board-certified Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner, and a professor of psychiatric nursing. She treats mental health across the lifespan. Her treatments are healing-centered, education-forward, and person-focused. This involves customized strategies for medication management. She aligns with the idea that Nursing is the facilitation of healing and works to provide intervention, education, and advocacy.
(808) 563-4918 View (808) 563-4918
Photo of Michael Goedde, MD, Psychiatrist
Michael Goedde
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified Verified
Hilo, HI 96720
I am a board-certified psychiatrist with additional certification in addiction medicine. I offer diagnostic assessment and treatment for adults with psychiatric conditions such as depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress, substance use, and bipolar disorder.
I am a board-certified psychiatrist with additional certification in addiction medicine. I offer diagnostic assessment and treatment for adults with psychiatric conditions such as depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress, substance use, and bipolar disorder.
(808) 437-8200 View (808) 437-8200
Photo of undefined - Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy Program (KAP), MD, Psychiatrist
Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy Program (KAP)
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified Verified
1 Endorsed
Kailua, HI 96734
The Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy (KAP) program incorporates integrative psychiatry/ketamine administration with trauma healing psychotherapy. It is designed to help individuals to heal the root of their pain, to create movement where their system feels “stuck” and to find the innate internal strength that each person holds. The Ketamine program helps individuals to work through their trauma, depression, anxiety, to optimize personal/spiritual growth and relationships, and to widen their perspective, seeing life through a more expansive lens.
The Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy (KAP) program incorporates integrative psychiatry/ketamine administration with trauma healing psychotherapy. It is designed to help individuals to heal the root of their pain, to create movement where their system feels “stuck” and to find the innate internal strength that each person holds. The Ketamine program helps individuals to work through their trauma, depression, anxiety, to optimize personal/spiritual growth and relationships, and to widen their perspective, seeing life through a more expansive lens.
(808) 559-9684 View (808) 559-9684
Photo of Kate Nicholas Hamzi, PMHNP, APRN-X, IBCLC, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
Kate Nicholas Hamzi
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, PMHNP, APRN-X, IBCLC
Verified Verified
1 Endorsed
Lihue, HI 96766  (Online Only)
Hello. Thank you for taking the first steps to healing your mental health! It is an incredibly big and difficult decision, but I’m glad you are here. My goal is to empower you with various methods to manage your mental health. These tools may include medication, therapy and lifestyle changes. I use research and evidence-based practices to assist in choosing the best regimen. As your provider, I will actively listen to your concerns without any judgment and work on a holistic treatment plan with you.
Hello. Thank you for taking the first steps to healing your mental health! It is an incredibly big and difficult decision, but I’m glad you are here. My goal is to empower you with various methods to manage your mental health. These tools may include medication, therapy and lifestyle changes. I use research and evidence-based practices to assist in choosing the best regimen. As your provider, I will actively listen to your concerns without any judgment and work on a holistic treatment plan with you.
(808) 649-3118 View (808) 649-3118
Photo of undefined - Gia Lau MD, MD, Psychiatrist
Gia Lau MD
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified Verified
Wailuku, HI 96793  (Online Only)
Not accepting new clients
Aloha! I am a medical doctor specializing in psychiatry and human behavior with a holistic approach. My balanced approach is to provide assessment and information for clients to make educated choices about tools available for self improvement both pharmacological and alternative. At this time I am available for telepsychiatry appointments utilizing easy, free technology and apps accessible by smart phone, tablet, or computer from the privacy of your own location within the State of Hawaii. (I am dually licensed in Oklahoma as well.) All you need is your device and an email account.
Aloha! I am a medical doctor specializing in psychiatry and human behavior with a holistic approach. My balanced approach is to provide assessment and information for clients to make educated choices about tools available for self improvement both pharmacological and alternative. At this time I am available for telepsychiatry appointments utilizing easy, free technology and apps accessible by smart phone, tablet, or computer from the privacy of your own location within the State of Hawaii. (I am dually licensed in Oklahoma as well.) All you need is your device and an email account.
(808) 468-7107 View (808) 468-7107
Photo of Sayaka Reasoner, APRN, PMHNP, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
Sayaka Reasoner
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, APRN, PMHNP
Verified Verified
Wailuku, HI 96793
I work with the clients with variety of mental health issues including mood disorders, depression, anxiety, PTSD, ADHD, schizophrenia, and behavior problems.
I work with the clients with variety of mental health issues including mood disorders, depression, anxiety, PTSD, ADHD, schizophrenia, and behavior problems.
(808) 736-3607 View (808) 736-3607
Photo of undefined - NLT Psychiatric and Consulting Services INC, MSN, APRN-RX, PMHNPBC, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
NLT Psychiatric and Consulting Services INC
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, MSN, APRN-RX, PMHNPBC
Verified Verified
Kekaha, HI 96752  (Online Only)
Waitlist for new clients
Begin a journey to ease the struggles of mental health with personalized medication management. Together, we'll shape a path where your unique story is not just our guide but the heart of our approach, guiding us towards lasting healing. Thank you for trusting us on this path to improved mental wellness
Begin a journey to ease the struggles of mental health with personalized medication management. Together, we'll shape a path where your unique story is not just our guide but the heart of our approach, guiding us towards lasting healing. Thank you for trusting us on this path to improved mental wellness
(808) 353-5101 View (808) 353-5101
Photo of undefined - Ann Cox Orchid Isle Wellness Center, DNP, PMHNP, FNP, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
Ann Cox Orchid Isle Wellness Center
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, DNP, PMHNP, FNP
Verified Verified
1 Endorsed
Hilo, HI 96720  (Online Only)
Practicing in Colorado and Hawaii via Telehealth. Dr. Cox has over 40 years experience in healthcare and is dual board certified as a Family Nurse Practitioner and Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner. She has a vision to build a healthy community of individuals and families in Colorado and the Big Island of Hawaii. By providing compassionate patient-centered care to clients across the life span, her focus is a holistic approach to your treatment plan. Psychotherapy is also provided as part of our services with the primary focus on Medication Management.
Practicing in Colorado and Hawaii via Telehealth. Dr. Cox has over 40 years experience in healthcare and is dual board certified as a Family Nurse Practitioner and Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner. She has a vision to build a healthy community of individuals and families in Colorado and the Big Island of Hawaii. By providing compassionate patient-centered care to clients across the life span, her focus is a holistic approach to your treatment plan. Psychotherapy is also provided as part of our services with the primary focus on Medication Management.
(808) 204-4388 View (808) 204-4388
Photo of Hyesu Shin, PMHNP, FNP-C, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
Hyesu Shin
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, PMHNP, FNP-C
Verified Verified
1 Endorsed
Honolulu, HI 96813
Aloha! I am Hyesu(HEY-SU), Board Certified in Psychiatry and Family Health NP in Hawaii. With over 10 years of dedicated practice, I’ve gained diverse experience, serving the underprivileged population in the Bronx, NY to Medicare Kapuna in Hawaii. I aspire to be an advocate and reduce the stigma surrounding Psychiatry. My goal is to contribute to my community by promoting serene and contented mental health, helping individuals achieve their goals, and fostering meaningful life experiences.
Aloha! I am Hyesu(HEY-SU), Board Certified in Psychiatry and Family Health NP in Hawaii. With over 10 years of dedicated practice, I’ve gained diverse experience, serving the underprivileged population in the Bronx, NY to Medicare Kapuna in Hawaii. I aspire to be an advocate and reduce the stigma surrounding Psychiatry. My goal is to contribute to my community by promoting serene and contented mental health, helping individuals achieve their goals, and fostering meaningful life experiences.
(808) 393-6566 View (808) 393-6566
Photo of Arica Keyser, PMHNP, BC, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
Arica Keyser
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, PMHNP, BC
Verified Verified
1 Endorsed
Kihei, HI 96753
I've embarked on a lifelong journey of education both through formal trainings and programs, and also acknowledge that I've learned just as much from my clients and colleagues over the years. Clients can expect to feel respected, listened to, and most importantly, that they have someone on their team working with them to meet their goals.
I've embarked on a lifelong journey of education both through formal trainings and programs, and also acknowledge that I've learned just as much from my clients and colleagues over the years. Clients can expect to feel respected, listened to, and most importantly, that they have someone on their team working with them to meet their goals.
(808) 374-5070 View (808) 374-5070
Photo of Matthew D Jenkins, MSN, APRN-RX, PMHNP, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
Matthew D Jenkins
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, MSN, APRN-RX, PMHNP
Verified Verified
1 Endorsed
Lihue, HI 96766
I am a board-certified psychiatric-mental health nurse practitioner dedicated to providing patient-centered care that prioritizes collaboration and shared decision-making. My goal is to empower my clients to take an active role in their mental health journey and provide evidence-based treatments tailored to meet their unique needs and goals. I have experience treating a wide range of mental health issues, including ADHD, addiction and substance abuse, depression, anxiety, and bipolar disorder in clients throughout their lifespan. I strive to create a safe and supportive environment where my patients can heal, and grow. Much Love.
I am a board-certified psychiatric-mental health nurse practitioner dedicated to providing patient-centered care that prioritizes collaboration and shared decision-making. My goal is to empower my clients to take an active role in their mental health journey and provide evidence-based treatments tailored to meet their unique needs and goals. I have experience treating a wide range of mental health issues, including ADHD, addiction and substance abuse, depression, anxiety, and bipolar disorder in clients throughout their lifespan. I strive to create a safe and supportive environment where my patients can heal, and grow. Much Love.
(808) 707-5139 View (808) 707-5139
Photo of Bradley Kuo, DNP, MEd, FNP, PMHNP, CARN-AP, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
Bradley Kuo
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, DNP, MEd, FNP, PMHNP, CARN-AP
Verified Verified
3 Endorsed
Honolulu, HI 96825  (Online Only)
Looking for someone to work with who is compassionate, puts you at ease, and does not pass judgement? We will collaborate to develop an individualized plan facilitating stability and further growth and development. This includes medication management, therapy, and lifestyle modifications. We will work together to assess your goals, consider the best approaches to meet them, and continue to find ways to improve yourself, relationships, work, and overall life. We can work in a fluid and flexible fashion to enhance your life. If you already work with a therapist, we would be happy to assist with medication management.
Looking for someone to work with who is compassionate, puts you at ease, and does not pass judgement? We will collaborate to develop an individualized plan facilitating stability and further growth and development. This includes medication management, therapy, and lifestyle modifications. We will work together to assess your goals, consider the best approaches to meet them, and continue to find ways to improve yourself, relationships, work, and overall life. We can work in a fluid and flexible fashion to enhance your life. If you already work with a therapist, we would be happy to assist with medication management.
(808) 638-3661 View (808) 638-3661
Photo of Soonja Tyrrell, APRN-Rx, PMHNP, -BC, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
Soonja Tyrrell
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, APRN-Rx, PMHNP, -BC
Verified Verified
Honolulu, HI 96817
Difficulty concentrating? Problems with sleep? Anxiety attacks? Nightmares? We have appointments available in as soon as one week. Let's work together to see how we can best meet your mental wellness needs.
Difficulty concentrating? Problems with sleep? Anxiety attacks? Nightmares? We have appointments available in as soon as one week. Let's work together to see how we can best meet your mental wellness needs.
(808) 664-1104 View (808) 664-1104
Photo of Thomas Cook, MD, Psychiatrist
Thomas Cook
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified Verified
3 Endorsed
Honolulu, HI 96814
I am a board certified psychiatrist taking new patients in Honolulu. I specialize in the rapid treatment of depression, and in the transition to more effective alternatives, such as TMS, ketamine, medical cannabis, and more. Taking pills everyday is at times indicated, but often there are more sensible options. I sometimes prescribe books, and my style is upfront, down to earth, out of the box, and interactive. Please visit --> www.drcook.org.
I am a board certified psychiatrist taking new patients in Honolulu. I specialize in the rapid treatment of depression, and in the transition to more effective alternatives, such as TMS, ketamine, medical cannabis, and more. Taking pills everyday is at times indicated, but often there are more sensible options. I sometimes prescribe books, and my style is upfront, down to earth, out of the box, and interactive. Please visit --> www.drcook.org.
(808) 670-3475 View (808) 670-3475
Photo of Molly Palmer, APRN-Rx, PMHNP, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
Molly Palmer
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, APRN-Rx, PMHNP
Verified Verified
9 Endorsed
Kihei, HI 96753
As a Nurse Practitioner, Molly has experience treating Post Traumatic Stress and Trauma-Related Disorders, Depression, Anxiety, Bipolar, and Substance Use Disorders. She is a strong believer in team work and collaboration with clients and their families to help them manage symptoms, enhance functioning, and improve quality of life. She attends monthly community meetings with Maui County Police Department, networks with other mental health providers, pharmacists, and engages with public health agencies to improve access and quality of care to individuals with mental illness.
As a Nurse Practitioner, Molly has experience treating Post Traumatic Stress and Trauma-Related Disorders, Depression, Anxiety, Bipolar, and Substance Use Disorders. She is a strong believer in team work and collaboration with clients and their families to help them manage symptoms, enhance functioning, and improve quality of life. She attends monthly community meetings with Maui County Police Department, networks with other mental health providers, pharmacists, and engages with public health agencies to improve access and quality of care to individuals with mental illness.
(808) 518-4819 View (808) 518-4819
Photo of Colleen Sanders Alford, MSN, APRN-Rx, PMHNP, PMH-C, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
Colleen Sanders Alford
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, MSN, APRN-Rx, PMHNP, PMH-C
Verified Verified
Honolulu, HI 96813
Are you struggling with mental health issues related to periods, menopause or getting pregnant, pregnancy and postpartum? There comes a time when we need some help from a certified professional to help cope with many of these life changes. I’m a Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner in Honolulu,with an additional certification in perinatal mental health through postpartum support international
Are you struggling with mental health issues related to periods, menopause or getting pregnant, pregnancy and postpartum? There comes a time when we need some help from a certified professional to help cope with many of these life changes. I’m a Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner in Honolulu,with an additional certification in perinatal mental health through postpartum support international
(808) 500-7620 View (808) 500-7620
Photo of undefined - Maui Mind Care, MD, Psychiatrist
Maui Mind Care
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified Verified
Kahului, HI 96732
Aloha! Welcome to Maui Mind Care, where we are pleased to bring the latest and most advanced psychiatric treatments to the Valley Isle. Whether you are struggling with mild anxieties, or profound mood or thought disorders, we are here to help. We are the first and only center on Maui to offer transcranial magnetic stimulation, or TMS therapy. We also offer expertise in psychopharmacology, both in person and via tele-medicine to other islands. Our staff is caring and well qualified, with years of experience in psychiatric treatment, research, and teaching. Contact us today. Let us bring you peace of mind.
Aloha! Welcome to Maui Mind Care, where we are pleased to bring the latest and most advanced psychiatric treatments to the Valley Isle. Whether you are struggling with mild anxieties, or profound mood or thought disorders, we are here to help. We are the first and only center on Maui to offer transcranial magnetic stimulation, or TMS therapy. We also offer expertise in psychopharmacology, both in person and via tele-medicine to other islands. Our staff is caring and well qualified, with years of experience in psychiatric treatment, research, and teaching. Contact us today. Let us bring you peace of mind.
(808) 379-3798 View (808) 379-3798
Photo of undefined - Satori Mental Health, MSN, PMHNP, FNP, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
Satori Mental Health
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, MSN, PMHNP, FNP
Verified Verified
Kailua, HI 96734  (Online Only)
Aloha kākou. My name is Marquita Granda and I am dually certified as a psychiatric mental health and family nurse practitioner. I see emotional, physical, mental and spiritual health as interdependent and while I emphasize the importance of a healthy lifestyle and social connection, I understand that psychotropic medications can serve an important role in facilitating mental wellness and in treating chemical dependency.
Aloha kākou. My name is Marquita Granda and I am dually certified as a psychiatric mental health and family nurse practitioner. I see emotional, physical, mental and spiritual health as interdependent and while I emphasize the importance of a healthy lifestyle and social connection, I understand that psychotropic medications can serve an important role in facilitating mental wellness and in treating chemical dependency.
(808) 736-1003 View (808) 736-1003

How does your Psychiatrist compare?

Average cost per session

$225

Psychiatrists in Hawaii who prioritize treating:

95% Anxiety
94% Depression
88% Medication Management
81% Bipolar Disorder
71% Trauma and PTSD
68% ADHD
68% Obsessive-Compulsive (OCD)

Average years in practice

12 Years

Top 3 insurances accepted

72% Hawaii Medical Services Association
68% BlueCross and BlueShield
51% University Health Alliance

How Psychiatrists in Hawaii see their clients

54% In Person and Online
46% Online Only

Gender breakdown

66% Female
34% Male
FAQs - About Psychiatrists and Psychiatric Nurses

How can I find a psychiatrist in Hawaii?

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.