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July 24, 1972

The Psychiatrist's Psyche

JAMA. 1972;221(4):410. doi:10.1001/jama.1972.03200170054023

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To the Editor.—  Dr. Earl Cohen refers to your EDITORIAL, "Psychiatrist Mind Your Psyche" in his letter in the March 27th edition of JAMA. He asks, among his comments regarding suicide among psychiatrists, "How can these self-assaultive people be identified among applicants for psychiatric training?"In the EDITORIAL appearing in JAMA, a reference is made to our exhibit, "Doctor, What is Your Emotional Image?" In this exhibit we mention that more selectivity in picking medical students who are less compulsive will probably lower the suicide level in physicians. The system of picking medical students by the medical school lends to the selection of more compulsive individuals. The more compulsive an individual, the more he will have a tendency toward depression and possibly suicide. The rate is probably higher among psychiatrists because of the lessened amount of gratification in the field of psychiatry. The gratification is less because therapy in psychiatry