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Nancy Downs

Title(s)Clinical Professor, Psychiatry
SchoolHealth Sciences
Phone858-246-1780
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    Collapse Biography 
    Collapse Education and Training
    UC San DiegoChief Resident Outpatient Psychiatry1990Psychiatry
    UC San DiegoResidency1988Psychiatry
    Mercy Medical CenterMedical Internship with Honors1986Primary Care
    UC San DiegoMD with Honors1985School of Medicine
    Stanford UniversityA.B. with Distinction1980Human Biology
    Collapse Awards and Honors
    American Psychiatric Association2018Distinguished Fellow
    Private Donor2015  - 2020Joseph E. Edelman College Mental Health Fund
    American Psychiatric Association2013Fellow
    UC San Diego2013Ten Year Service Award
    Peter F. Drucker1997 Nonprofit Innovation
    Dept of Psychiatry, UCSD1990Chairman's Research Prize
    Psychiatry Residency In-service Training Exam1989Top One Percentile
    UC San Diego House-staff1988Finalist, Teaching Award
    Medical class, preclinical courses1983Top Ten Percentile
    National Institutes of Health1981Pre-doctoral training grant
    Stanford University1980Graduated w/ Distinction (top 10%)

    Collapse Overview 
    Collapse Overview
    Dr. Nancy Swerdlow Downs was born in Lawrence, KS and raised throughout the United States. She is an H.S. Clinical Professor of Psychiatry, and Section Chief of College Mental Health for UC San Diego Health System. Her clinical and academic work focuses on integrative treatments for depression and anxiety in primary care settings, and novel interventions for suicide prevention.

    Currently, as the Section Chief of College Mental Health, Dr. Downs and her team provide consultation-liaison services to staff and faculty, and cost-effective mental health care for approximately 39,000 UC San Diego undergraduate, graduate and professional students. She is a Distinguished Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association, a reviewer for several academic journals and has provided leadership to the UC Office of the President Psychiatrist Task Force and National Network of Depression Centers (NNDC) College Mental Health Task Force. With over 17 years of full time equivalent academic experience, spanning 30 years, Dr. Downs continues to appreciate working with patients, educating trainees, harnessing technology, contributing to the academic literature and creating innovative, data based programs, which enhance our community.

    Dr. Downs’ academic creative work centers around developing, funding and executing inaugural clinical and teaching programs which continue to flourish: 1) the UCSD Psychiatry Internship Program including multidisciplinary sites in internal medicine and neurology; 2) the UCSD Combined Family Medicine and Psychiatry Residency Program, based at St. Vincent De Paul Village; 3) UCSD Psychiatry Services on-campus, integrated for both the Student Health and Counseling Services and capitalizing on EMR technology to track at-risk students and assist primary care providers with mental health algorithms; and 4) Healer Education Assessment and Referral (HEAR) program, which utilizes an anonymous web-based screening assessment tool to detect burnout, depression, and suicidal thoughts/behaviors in health care providers.

    Collapse ORNG Applications 
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    Collapse Bibliographic 
    Collapse Publications
    Publications listed below are automatically derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing publications. Researchers can login to make corrections and additions, or contact us for help.
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    1. Pospos S, Tal I, Iglewicz A, Newton IG, Tai-Seale M, Downs N, Jong P, Lee D, Davidson JE, Lee SY, Rubanovich CK, Ho EV, Sanchez C, Zisook S. Gender differences among medical students, house staff, and faculty physicians at high risk for suicide: A HEAR report. Depress Anxiety. 2019 May 17. PMID: 31102314.
      View in: PubMed
    2. Downs N, Galles E, Skehan B, Lipson SK. Be True to Our Schools-Models of Care in College Mental Health. Curr Psychiatry Rep. 2018 Aug 09; 20(9):72. PMID: 30094519.
      View in: PubMed
    3. Downs N, Alderman T, Bhakta S, Greenwood TA. Implementing a college mental health program - an overview of the first twelve months. J Am Coll Health. 2019 Jan; 67(1):27-31. PMID: 29601286.
      View in: PubMed
    4. Pospos S, Young IT, Downs N, Iglewicz A, Depp C, Chen JY, Newton I, Lee K, Light GA, Zisook S. Web-Based Tools and Mobile Applications To Mitigate Burnout, Depression, and Suicidality Among Healthcare Students and Professionals: a Systematic Review. Acad Psychiatry. 2018 Feb; 42(1):109-120. PMID: 29256033.
      View in: PubMed
    5. Downs NS, Alderman T, Schneiber K, Swerdlow NR. Treat and Teach Our Students Well: College Mental Health and Collaborative Campus Communities. Psychiatr Serv. 2016 09 01; 67(9):957-63. PMID: 27181737.
      View in: PubMed
    6. Martinez S, Tal I, Norcross W, Newton IG, Downs N, Seay K, McGuire T, Kirby B, Chidley B, Tiamson-Kassab M, Lee D, Hadley A, Doran N, Jong P, Lee K, Moutier C, Norman M, Zisook S. Alcohol use in an academic medical school environment: A UC San Diego Healer Education Assessment and Referral (HEAR) Report. Ann Clin Psychiatry. 2016 05; 28(2):85-94. PMID: 27285389.
      View in: PubMed
    7. Sidney Zisook, Ilanit Young, Neal Doran, Nancy Downs, Allison Hadley, Brittany Kirby, Tara McGuire, Christine Moutier, William Norcross, Maria Tiamson-Kassab.Suicidal Ideation Among Students and Physicians at a U.S. Medical School A Healer Education, Assessment and Referral (HEAR) Program Report. Omega Journal of Death and Dying. 2015.
    8. Downs N, Feng W, Kirby B, McGuire T, Moutier C, Norcross W, Norman M, Young I, Zisook S. Listening to depression and suicide risk in medical students: the Healer Education Assessment and Referral (HEAR) Program. Acad Psychiatry. 2014 Oct; 38(5):547-53. PMID: 24705825.
      View in: PubMed
    9. McGuire T, Moutier C, Downs N, Zisook S. In response to "Details on suicide among US physicians: data from the National Violent Death Reporting System". Gen Hosp Psychiatry. 2013 Jul-Aug; 35(4):448. PMID: 23567072.
      View in: PubMed
    10. Zisook S, Downs N, Moutier C, Clayton P. College students and suicide risk: prevention and the role of academic psychiatry. Acad Psychiatry. 2012 Jan 01; 36(1):1-6. PMID: 22362428.
      View in: PubMed
    11. 4. Zisook S, Downs N. Death dying and bereavement. Baltimore, Williams and Wilkins Co, 2000, p. 1963- 1981.Kaplan HI, Sadock BJ (eds) Comprehensive Textbook of Psychiatry VII,. 2000.
    12. Zisook S, Downs NS. Diagnosis and treatment of depression in late life. J Clin Psychiatry. 1998; 59 Suppl 4:80-91. PMID: 9554325.
      View in: PubMed
    13. Downs NS, McCahill ME. Psychiatry's future. Am J Psychiatry. 1997 Sep; 154(9):1325-6. PMID: 9286213.
      View in: PubMed
    14. Shuchter S, Downs N, Zisook S. .Biologically Informed Psychotherapy of Depression. 1996.
    15. Downs NS, Zisook S, Swerdlow N. Annals Clin Psychiatry 1992, 4:87-94.The relationship of affective illness and personality disorder in psychiatric outpatients: a retrospective study. Annals of Clinical Psychiatry. 1992; (4):87-94.
    16. Downs NS, Britton KT, Gibbs DM, Koob GF, Swerdlow NR. Supersensitive endocrine response to physostigmine in dopamine-depleted rats: a model of depression? Biol Psychiatry. 1986 Jul; 21(8-9):775-86. PMID: 3015269.
      View in: PubMed