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AAP Position Statement on US Presidential Executive Order on Immigration

Amin Azzam, MD, 7/7/2017

Date: February 7, 2017

From: Association for Academic Psychiatry (AAP) Executive Board

Subject: Position Statement on US Presidential Executive Order on Immigration

The Association for Academic Psychiatry (AAP) focuses on education in psychiatry at every level from the beginning of medical school through lifelong learning for psychiatrists and other physicians. We seek to help psychiatrists who are interested in careers in academic psychiatry develop the skills and knowledge in teaching, research, and career development required to succeed.

In serving our core mission we rely on a diverse workforce of academically-oriented psychiatrists dedicated to educating future generations of psychiatrists, primary care physicians, and trainees across several other health professions. In turn, our trainees are entrusted with serving the diverse mental health needs of people residing or visiting   both Canada and the United States. The inherent diversity of illnesses, associated needs, and life circumstances of the patients we are honored to serve necessitates a         diverse workforce with broad, culturally-competent perspectives. This includes academic psychiatrists who practice a variety of faith traditions, as well as those who lawfully wish to migrate to the United States to practice academic psychiatry.

Consequently, the Association for Academic Psychiatry is deeply concerned about the Executive Order titled “Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States,” issued on January 27, 2017.  We recognize the importance of ensuring national security. At the same time, International Medical Graduates (IMGs) often serve the mental health needs of the most vulnerable populations, including those in rural and low-income communities.  The executive order jeopardizes the IMGs who have been granted visas and wish to serve as psychiatrists in teaching hospitals that serve these populations. We join other health care organizations in encouraging the administration to mitigate any negative impact this executive order may have on the supply of academic psychiatrists, and any subsequent detrimental consequences to the mental health of the United States population.

Amin Azzam, MD, MA President On behalf of the Association for Academic Psychiatry Executive Board

​For questions or comments, please contact Lisa Hedrick, Administrative Director, Association for Academic Psychiatry​.