Skip to main content

Transforming the understanding
and treatment of mental illnesses.

Celebrating 75 Years! Learn More >>

Office of the Clinical Director


The National Institute of Mental Health Division of Intramural Research Program (NIMH IRP) conducts extensive research into the mechanisms of and treatments for a range of mental illnesses including schizophrenia, affective disorders, anxiety disorders, childhood psychotic and affective disorders, as well as genetic studies, therapeutics and basic laboratory research. The IRP conducts clinical trials that are designed to expedite the exchange of information between scientists and clinicians so that basic findings can be moved quickly from the laboratory setting to the treatment of patients at the bedside. Clinical trials are of primary importance to the research mission of the NIMH. The clinical research portion of the program comprises tenured and tenure-track clinical investigators, staff clinicians, and fellows in more than a dozen clinical Branches and free-standing Sections. There are approximately 120 NIMH protocols, which accounted for approximately 7,500 inpatient days and 6,500 outpatient visits in FY12.

The mission of the Office of the Clinical Director (OCD) is to ensure that subjects participating in NIMH protocols receive the highest quality clinical care. This is accomplished by the activities of the Human Subjects Protection Unit, the Combined Neuroscience Institutional Review Board (IRB), Clinical Fellowship Training activities, and the Psychiatric Consultation Liaison Service. The overall responsibilities of the office include the following: oversight of the clinical care provided to our research subjects, management of the NIMH protocol review process, administration of the quality assurance program, authorization of medical staff credentials, and allocation of Clinical Center (CC) resources.

The Office of the Clinical Director:

  • Is fully aligned to the NIMH Mission and Strategic Plan
  • Supports Clinical Research in Mental Health in the IRP
  • Ensures that subjects participating in NIMH protocols receive the highest quality clinical care
  • Facilitates intramural/extramural collaboration

Clinical Fellowships

NIMH is committed to the training and mentorship experience of medical staff fellows. For psychiatry residents interested in an ACGME accredited fourth year of psychiatry residency training or additional clinical research training, please contact Lisa Cullins, M.D., NIMH Clinical Fellowship Training Program Director.

Current clinical fellows can contact Dr. Cullins with any training issues. The Office is located in 6–5340 (SE). The telephone number to contact a staff member is 301-496-1338.