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January 20, 1989

Psychiatric House Calls

JAMA. 1989;261(3):452-453. doi:10.1001/jama.1989.03420030126047

Are house calls the province only of primary-care physicians—family physicians, general practitioners, internists, and/or pediatricians? The answer to this question is "No," according to Psychiatric House Calls, edited by John A. Talbott, MD, and Alan Z. A. Manevitz, MD. Of interest is the dust jacket, where "House Calls" is printed in large capitals, while above it "Psychiatric" appears in much smaller type. Is this mute evidence, common in psychiatry, of a simultaneous divorce from and reentry into the field of medicine?

Psychiatric House Calls is an entertaining and lively compendium of anecdotal experiences of many physicians, most of whom are psychiatrists, with many of the authors making house calls early in their training or shortly after beginning practice. It is of more than passing interest to note that at the University of Maryland Medical School a program to teach house calls to fourth-year medical students is included in the curriculum