Psychiatrists in Staunton City County, VA

Photo of Dr. Benjamin Pumphrey, Psychiatrist in Staunton City County, VA
Dr. Benjamin Pumphrey
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified Verified
Staunton, VA 24401  (Online Only)
Deep understanding of the nature and history of symptoms is necessary to guide treatment and generate lasting improvements. Engaging in mental health care requires patience, a curious mind, and an honest desire to make changes. I provide psychiatric medication management and psychotherapy with a psychodynamic/psychoanalytic approach. I received my medical degree from the University of Virginia and completed my psychiatry residency through the University of Pennsylvania.
Deep understanding of the nature and history of symptoms is necessary to guide treatment and generate lasting improvements. Engaging in mental health care requires patience, a curious mind, and an honest desire to make changes. I provide psychiatric medication management and psychotherapy with a psychodynamic/psychoanalytic approach. I received my medical degree from the University of Virginia and completed my psychiatry residency through the University of Pennsylvania.
(540) 516-4640 View (540) 516-4640
Photo of Sam Howard, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner in Staunton City County, VA
Sam Howard
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, MSN, PMHNP
Verified Verified
2 Endorsed
Staunton, VA 24401
As a provider, I seek to walk alongside patients as we work to achieve care goals together. This process requires openness, honesty, and trust that I hope to earn over time. We arrive at a collaborative treatment plan focusing on psychotherapy, diet, exercise, mindfulness, and medication if it is necessary. This whole-person approach hopes to achieve wellness while providing the opportunity to learn skills to live a healthy and fulfilling life.
As a provider, I seek to walk alongside patients as we work to achieve care goals together. This process requires openness, honesty, and trust that I hope to earn over time. We arrive at a collaborative treatment plan focusing on psychotherapy, diet, exercise, mindfulness, and medication if it is necessary. This whole-person approach hopes to achieve wellness while providing the opportunity to learn skills to live a healthy and fulfilling life.
(434) 533-7427 View (434) 533-7427
Photo of Couples Psychotherapy, Psychiatrist in Staunton City County, VA
Couples Psychotherapy
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified Verified
Staunton, VA 24401
Psychodynamic couples therapy is an exploratory kind of therapy. Adults carry within themselves the lessons and feelings from a lifetime of experiences. Some of these are obvious, and some are located outside of one’s awareness. All these experiences and feelings can potentially affect the situation which brings a couple to therapy. Concerns about intimacy and sexual connection can have psychodynamic underpinnings and may also be explored in this therapy. Some couples note that they are having the same quarrel over and over, and they feel stuck and unable to change this pattern. Some are unsure if they wish to stay together.
Psychodynamic couples therapy is an exploratory kind of therapy. Adults carry within themselves the lessons and feelings from a lifetime of experiences. Some of these are obvious, and some are located outside of one’s awareness. All these experiences and feelings can potentially affect the situation which brings a couple to therapy. Concerns about intimacy and sexual connection can have psychodynamic underpinnings and may also be explored in this therapy. Some couples note that they are having the same quarrel over and over, and they feel stuck and unable to change this pattern. Some are unsure if they wish to stay together.
(434) 433-8553 View (434) 433-8553
Photo of Dr. Chenhang Zou, Psychiatrist in Staunton City County, VA
Dr. Chenhang Zou
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified Verified
Staunton, VA 24401
Dr. Zou is welcoming new patients seeking specialized treatment for anxiety, depression, trauma, OCD, bipolar disorder, and other psychiatric concerns. As a holistic psychiatrist, Dr. Zou draws from a wide-ranging toolbox of treatment options - including psychotherapy, psycho-education and lifestyle adaptations in addition to medication where appropriate. Consequently, patients benefit from a well-integrated approach to care that is both systematic and thorough.
Dr. Zou is welcoming new patients seeking specialized treatment for anxiety, depression, trauma, OCD, bipolar disorder, and other psychiatric concerns. As a holistic psychiatrist, Dr. Zou draws from a wide-ranging toolbox of treatment options - including psychotherapy, psycho-education and lifestyle adaptations in addition to medication where appropriate. Consequently, patients benefit from a well-integrated approach to care that is both systematic and thorough.
View
Photo of My Wellbeing Mental Healthcare, Psychiatric Nurse in Staunton City County, VA
My Wellbeing Mental Healthcare
Psychiatric Nurse, PMHNP
Verified Verified
Staunton, VA 24401  (Online Only)
Hi there, I'm Hannah, Do you suffer from anxiety and depression? If you are suffering from anxiety and depression and struggling to keep up with your work, relationship with family and friends, I am here for you. I help high performers like you to manage depression, anxiety, and mood disorders to avoid feeling overwhelmed.
Hi there, I'm Hannah, Do you suffer from anxiety and depression? If you are suffering from anxiety and depression and struggling to keep up with your work, relationship with family and friends, I am here for you. I help high performers like you to manage depression, anxiety, and mood disorders to avoid feeling overwhelmed.
(571) 789-0145 View (571) 789-0145
Photo of Dr. Gifty Addai, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner in Staunton City County, VA
Dr. Gifty Addai
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, DNP, CRNP, PMHNP
Verified Verified
1 Endorsed
Staunton, VA 24401
Greetings! I am a nationally board certified psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner with over 12 years experience working with children, adolescents, adults and geriatrics in mental health. My approach is patient-centered and holistic, creating a partnership with each client. I advocate for patient empowerment through family and patient education, clear communication, and trust to help improve quality of life. My experience in medical and mental health allows me to make appropriate treatment plans, therapy and medication recommendations, if necessary. I believe in treating the root cause and not just treating symptoms.
Greetings! I am a nationally board certified psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner with over 12 years experience working with children, adolescents, adults and geriatrics in mental health. My approach is patient-centered and holistic, creating a partnership with each client. I advocate for patient empowerment through family and patient education, clear communication, and trust to help improve quality of life. My experience in medical and mental health allows me to make appropriate treatment plans, therapy and medication recommendations, if necessary. I believe in treating the root cause and not just treating symptoms.
(240) 743-2555 View (240) 743-2555

Online Psychiatrists

Photo of Julie Kim, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner in Staunton City County, VA
Julie Kim
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, PMHNP
Verified Verified
Richmond, VA 23226
Accepting new clients with immediate availability!—My journey in healthcare has shown me that a holistic approach to mental health is essential. My approach encompasses medication management, when necessary, but I am equally devoted to exploring non-pharmacological interventions that feel most comfortable for you. I advocate for lifestyle interventions as a cornerstone of mental well-being. Just as you might have a personal trainer for your body, I see my role as helping you develop and nurture your mind. Mental health is an investment in your mind, and it deserves the same attention and care as any other aspect of your health.
Accepting new clients with immediate availability!—My journey in healthcare has shown me that a holistic approach to mental health is essential. My approach encompasses medication management, when necessary, but I am equally devoted to exploring non-pharmacological interventions that feel most comfortable for you. I advocate for lifestyle interventions as a cornerstone of mental well-being. Just as you might have a personal trainer for your body, I see my role as helping you develop and nurture your mind. Mental health is an investment in your mind, and it deserves the same attention and care as any other aspect of your health.
(804) 395-5347 View (804) 395-5347
Photo of Jenny Wang, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner in Staunton City County, VA
Jenny Wang
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, PMHNP, FNP, MA
Verified Verified
Blacksburg, VA 24060
With over 10 years experience, I am a dual board-certified nurse practitioner in psychiatric mental health and Children/adult/gerontology primary care. I value holistic approach to individual’s physical, emotional, mental, social, and environmental health.
With over 10 years experience, I am a dual board-certified nurse practitioner in psychiatric mental health and Children/adult/gerontology primary care. I value holistic approach to individual’s physical, emotional, mental, social, and environmental health.
(540) 660-7746 View (540) 660-7746
Photo of Megan Zamora, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner in Staunton City County, VA
Megan Zamora
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, PMHNP
Verified Verified
1 Endorsed
Halifax, VA 24558  (Online Only)
NEW PATIENTS WELCOME. WEEKEND AVAILABILITY. Whether depression and anxiety are long-term struggles or you are experiencing your first event, or you suffer from psychosis or a personality disorder I am here to manage your medications and provide brief psychotherapy. I understand the struggle of making it through the day when you are having trouble concentrating, connecting with others or just feeling a complete lack of motivation to interact fully with the world around you. Possibly you turn to unhealthy coping skills and maybe you feel you’ve tried it all. I am here to help you live a happier, healthier life.
NEW PATIENTS WELCOME. WEEKEND AVAILABILITY. Whether depression and anxiety are long-term struggles or you are experiencing your first event, or you suffer from psychosis or a personality disorder I am here to manage your medications and provide brief psychotherapy. I understand the struggle of making it through the day when you are having trouble concentrating, connecting with others or just feeling a complete lack of motivation to interact fully with the world around you. Possibly you turn to unhealthy coping skills and maybe you feel you’ve tried it all. I am here to help you live a happier, healthier life.
(434) 885-1257 View (434) 885-1257
Photo of Maura Constance, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner in Staunton City County, VA
Maura Constance
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, MPH, PMHNP, FNP, BC
Verified Verified
Winchester, VA 22601
I am a warm, compassionate psychiatric nurse practitioner devoted to helping people overcome difficulties and thrive. I employ a humanistic approach that looks at the whole person to understand how elements in the past and factors in the present environment can contribute to your current challenges. I listen deeply and work with you to find the right mix of evidence-based therapies and medications to address your particular needs. I have a special interest in depression, anxiety, personality disorders, addiction issues, bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia.
I am a warm, compassionate psychiatric nurse practitioner devoted to helping people overcome difficulties and thrive. I employ a humanistic approach that looks at the whole person to understand how elements in the past and factors in the present environment can contribute to your current challenges. I listen deeply and work with you to find the right mix of evidence-based therapies and medications to address your particular needs. I have a special interest in depression, anxiety, personality disorders, addiction issues, bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia.
(301) 392-7120 View (301) 392-7120
Photo of AB Psychiatry, Psychiatrist in Staunton City County, VA
AB Psychiatry
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified Verified
Salem, VA 24153
We are accepting new patients, offering both in person and online appointments. Call today to speak with one of our representatives or visit ABPsychiatry.com to schedule an appointment.
We are accepting new patients, offering both in person and online appointments. Call today to speak with one of our representatives or visit ABPsychiatry.com to schedule an appointment.
(540) 352-4755 View (540) 352-4755
Photo of Alla Lerner-Brandon, Psychiatrist in Staunton City County, VA
Alla Lerner-Brandon
Psychiatrist, MD
Verified Verified
Glen Allen, VA 23060
I am a board certified General Adult Psychiatrist who has been actively practicing in both inpatient and outpatient settings (majority outpatient) for the last eighteen 18 yrs since I graduated as a Chief Resident from MCV/VCU in 2005. I started my own private practice in June 2023 (Living Your Best, LLC) and am currently accepting new patients, ages 18-65. I consider myself to not only have consistent active listening skills, but pride myself in my all-inclusive, biopsychosocial approach to help you with your struggles and reach your highest potential, all while maintaining an empathetic and sincere nature.
I am a board certified General Adult Psychiatrist who has been actively practicing in both inpatient and outpatient settings (majority outpatient) for the last eighteen 18 yrs since I graduated as a Chief Resident from MCV/VCU in 2005. I started my own private practice in June 2023 (Living Your Best, LLC) and am currently accepting new patients, ages 18-65. I consider myself to not only have consistent active listening skills, but pride myself in my all-inclusive, biopsychosocial approach to help you with your struggles and reach your highest potential, all while maintaining an empathetic and sincere nature.
(804) 538-4839 View (804) 538-4839
Photo of Jonathan David Yoder, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner in Staunton City County, VA
Jonathan David Yoder
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, MSN, PMHNP
Verified Verified
1 Endorsed
Henrico, VA 23228
Are you accumulating more and more diagnoses and medication, but not getting better? Are you tired of feeling like you are just throwing medications against a wall and seeing what sticks? Are you not making progress despite doing 'the right things'? Together we will systematically assess where you're at, what is working, what is not, and create a plan to get started on the path to feeling better. I am focused on helping people struggling with depression, bipolar disorder, OCD, PTSD, and borderline personality disorder recover.
Are you accumulating more and more diagnoses and medication, but not getting better? Are you tired of feeling like you are just throwing medications against a wall and seeing what sticks? Are you not making progress despite doing 'the right things'? Together we will systematically assess where you're at, what is working, what is not, and create a plan to get started on the path to feeling better. I am focused on helping people struggling with depression, bipolar disorder, OCD, PTSD, and borderline personality disorder recover.
(804) 532-4945 View (804) 532-4945
Photo of Joseph W. Iskandar, Psychiatrist in Staunton City County, VA
Joseph W. Iskandar
Psychiatrist, DO, FAPA
Verified Verified
Roanoke, VA 24018
Dr. Iskandar is a diplomate of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology. He is a fellow of the American Psychiatric Association. He is also a member of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, the American Psychiatric Association, the American Osteopathic Association, and the Psychiatric Society of Virginia.
Dr. Iskandar is a diplomate of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology. He is a fellow of the American Psychiatric Association. He is also a member of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, the American Psychiatric Association, the American Osteopathic Association, and the Psychiatric Society of Virginia.
(540) 324-2992 View (540) 324-2992
Photo of Lisa Clement-DeFalco, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner in Staunton City County, VA
Lisa Clement-DeFalco
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, MA, MSN, PMHNPBC
Verified Verified
Lynchburg, VA 24503  (Online Only)
Many years of providing mental health care to families, children and adults in community health centers, outpatient clinics and inpatient mental health units have given me vast experience with various mental health diagnoses and treatment modalities. I have appreciated working with clients with depression, anxiety/trauma, Bipolar, and Schizophrenia. I also appreciate the struggles that people diagnosed with personality disorders (truly a relational experience) especially Borderline and Antisocial Personality Disorders. Further, the influences of mind-altering substances on mental health must always be considered and address
Many years of providing mental health care to families, children and adults in community health centers, outpatient clinics and inpatient mental health units have given me vast experience with various mental health diagnoses and treatment modalities. I have appreciated working with clients with depression, anxiety/trauma, Bipolar, and Schizophrenia. I also appreciate the struggles that people diagnosed with personality disorders (truly a relational experience) especially Borderline and Antisocial Personality Disorders. Further, the influences of mind-altering substances on mental health must always be considered and address
(434) 830-5306 View (434) 830-5306
Photo of Focus Psychiatry and Wellness, Psychiatric Nurse in Staunton City County, VA
Focus Psychiatry and Wellness
Psychiatric Nurse, PMHNP
Verified Verified
Bedford, VA 24523
Mental Health issues can make life difficult. At Focus Psychiatry, we want to help you get your life back on track and feeling better as soon as possible. You don't have to leave your home to see your mental health provider. Beth will come to you, virtually. All you need is an internet connection and a device with a camera and speaker. It can be as simple as your smartphone! ​ No sitter - no transportation? No problem! See your provider on your lunch break? YES! ​ Simply just don't want to fight traffic or leave home? It's easy! You can schedule online anytime at www.focuspsychiatryandwellness.com
Mental Health issues can make life difficult. At Focus Psychiatry, we want to help you get your life back on track and feeling better as soon as possible. You don't have to leave your home to see your mental health provider. Beth will come to you, virtually. All you need is an internet connection and a device with a camera and speaker. It can be as simple as your smartphone! ​ No sitter - no transportation? No problem! See your provider on your lunch break? YES! ​ Simply just don't want to fight traffic or leave home? It's easy! You can schedule online anytime at www.focuspsychiatryandwellness.com
(540) 305-3623 View (540) 305-3623
Photo of Redbud Behavioral Health, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner in Staunton City County, VA
Redbud Behavioral Health
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, PhD, MSN, PMHNP, FNP
Verified Verified
1 Endorsed
Are you accumulating more and more diagnoses and medication, but not getting better? Are you tired of feeling like you are just throwing medications against a wall and seeing what sticks? Are you not making progress despite doing 'the right things'? Together we will systematically assess where you're at, what is working, what is not, and create a plan to get started on the path to feeling better. I am focused on helping people struggling with depression, bipolar disorder, OCD, PTSD, and borderline personality disorder recover.
Are you accumulating more and more diagnoses and medication, but not getting better? Are you tired of feeling like you are just throwing medications against a wall and seeing what sticks? Are you not making progress despite doing 'the right things'? Together we will systematically assess where you're at, what is working, what is not, and create a plan to get started on the path to feeling better. I am focused on helping people struggling with depression, bipolar disorder, OCD, PTSD, and borderline personality disorder recover.
(540) 501-5268 View (540) 501-5268
Photo of Peggy Doyle, Advanced Practice Psychiatric Nurse, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner in Staunton City County, VA
Peggy Doyle, Advanced Practice Psychiatric Nurse
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, PMH, CNS, BC
Verified Verified
Warrenton, VA 20186
During the 50+ years I have been serving the community as a nurse and mental health therapist I have learned that you who come to me for help have your own answers locked inside. My work is to share my skills and experience to help you unravel your confusion and ease your emotional pain. Couples with relationship issues learn to listen. Individuals learn to deal with loss and grief. Anxiety dissipates with insight and learned skills. Children and Adolescents improve self esteem and confidence. Changing the way you look at your world will change the way you feel and act.
During the 50+ years I have been serving the community as a nurse and mental health therapist I have learned that you who come to me for help have your own answers locked inside. My work is to share my skills and experience to help you unravel your confusion and ease your emotional pain. Couples with relationship issues learn to listen. Individuals learn to deal with loss and grief. Anxiety dissipates with insight and learned skills. Children and Adolescents improve self esteem and confidence. Changing the way you look at your world will change the way you feel and act.
(540) 736-8887 View (540) 736-8887
Photo of Camille Brenke, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner in Staunton City County, VA
Camille Brenke
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, PMHNP
Verified Verified
Midlothian, VA 23114  (Online Only)
Camille Brenke is a board certified Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP-BC) who has experience working with children and adults seeking help with depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, personality disorders, psychosis, and dementia. Camille has a special interest in perinatal mood and anxiety disorders as well as alternative and complementary medicines.
Camille Brenke is a board certified Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP-BC) who has experience working with children and adults seeking help with depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, personality disorders, psychosis, and dementia. Camille has a special interest in perinatal mood and anxiety disorders as well as alternative and complementary medicines.
(804) 575-7191 View (804) 575-7191
Photo of Leanne Hyler, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner in Staunton City County, VA
Leanne Hyler
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, NP
Verified Verified
Richmond, VA 23225  (Online Only)
Hi! I'm Leanne and I am passionate about helping people manage mental health issues with medications, diet, exercise, and self-care. I can help you overcome and better manage your symptoms and improve your quality of life. Seeking help can be scary but you're making the right choice. You deserve to be the best version of yourself that you can be.
Hi! I'm Leanne and I am passionate about helping people manage mental health issues with medications, diet, exercise, and self-care. I can help you overcome and better manage your symptoms and improve your quality of life. Seeking help can be scary but you're making the right choice. You deserve to be the best version of yourself that you can be.
(804) 376-8795 View (804) 376-8795

See more therapy options for Staunton City County

How does your Psychiatrist compare?

Number of Psychiatrists in Staunton City County, VA

< 10

Psychiatrists in Staunton City County, VA who prioritize treating:

83% Depression
83% Anxiety
83% Obsessive-Compulsive (OCD)
83% Trauma and PTSD
83% Bipolar Disorder
67% Relationship Issues
67% Stress

Average years in practice

10 Years

Top 3 insurances accepted

75% Aetna
75% BlueCross and BlueShield
75% Medicare

How Psychiatrists in Staunton City County, VA see their clients

67% In Person and Online
33% Online Only

Gender breakdown

60% Female
40% Male

FAQs - About Psychiatrists and Psychiatric Nurses

How can I find a psychiatrist in Staunton City County?

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.