The Clinic for Outpatient Psychiatry Education (COPE) provides outstanding outpatient psychiatric services in an educational setting, custom designed for medical student education. Staffed by experienced attending faculty, COPE seeks cases representative of primary care to train the next generation of physicians evaluate and manage their mental health needs. Begun in 2009, the Department of Psychiatry at UNMC began COPE as an initiative to redesign the medical student outpatient experience during the 3rd year clerkship. COPE provides students the opportunity to assess patients’ mental health needs most commonly seen in primary care in a collaborative, dynamic educational setting.
COPE patients are seen for initial evaluations and follow-up visits by both medical students and attending faculty. Patient visits are billed as a psychiatric service and all patient records are available in the electronic medical records system. All referring providers receive confirmation of patients’ attendance and recommendations. COPE is not a student-run “free” clinic, although some patients may be seen on a sliding scale.