Walnut Creek is a city of about 70,000 thousand residents, located 25 miles east of San Francisco, and 16 miles from Berkeley and Oakland. It is known for its small-town charm, vibrant downtown, arts and parks, top notch schools, and spectacular surrounding hills. Mt. Diablo, with its unmistakable profile of two peaks, is a landmark that rises visibly over the entire Bay Area. The city itself offers urban and suburban living, adjacent to striking natural environments and bucolic rural settings. The Department of Mental Health and Addiction Medicine Recovery Services is close to freeways and the Walnut Creek BART station, allowing for an easy commute to Oakland, San Francisco, and the North Bay. It is also located within walking distance of shopping, restaurant and entertainment venues in the downtown.
Kaiser Permanente Walnut Creek Medical Center is part of the Diablo Service Area which provides comprehensive health care to 350,000 health plan members in East and Central Contra Costa County. Approximately 130,000 members access care at the Walnut Creek hospital and medical offices which employ 600 physicians and 5000 other staff members. Our patient population is represented by a broad socioeconomic, ethnic, cultural, and linguistic (Spanish, Russian, Farsi, and Mandarin/Cantonese languages are common languages spoken) spectrum. The Mental Health and Addiction Medicine services are staffed by over 100 professionals and serve all age groups with wide range of diagnoses and presenting problems.
Equity, Inclusion & Diversity
We are committed to nurturing and integrating diversity training into all aspects of our postdoctoral residency program by:
Providing residents with opportunities to work with patients who represent various aspects of diversity, including age, religion, gender, socioeconomic status, ethnicity, values, and lifestyle.
Placing a high value on residents’ willingness to engage in self-reflection, and supporting the exploration of attitudes, beliefs and therapeutic postures that could impact clinical interactions.
Maintaining a consistent focus in clinical supervision on expanding residents’ multicultural awareness and competence in the provision of psychotherapeutic services and providing guidance, training, and resources on topics such as mitigating unconscious bias, respecting every voice, and cultivating a sense of inclusion and belonging in the workplace.
Residents are encouraged to participate in the Regional Mental Health Training Program EID Committee’s advanced trainings on topics related to cultural sensitivity and competence along with a forum to reflect on and discuss their varied experiences in a safe environment. There is also opportunity to participate in an EID committee at the local clinic level.
Regularly scheduled weekly didactic seminars, formerly held at the consortium level, are now organized, and administered regionally for all KP NorCal postdoctoral residents. Residents are required to attend a two-hour weekly virtual seminar, which focuses on developing competencies and expertise in clinical areas most relevant to their day-to-day work.
Our Regional Mental Health Training Program also sponsors seminars for continuing professional development. The seminars are offered at select times during the year for all KP mental health trainees and staff at Kaiser Northern California Medical Centers. We bring in local and national experts on a variety of cutting-edge topics in mental health treatment and research. Residents are required to attend these monthly seminars. Regional seminar dates and a list of speakers and topics can be found on the Regional Mental Health Training Programs website. In addition, many of the presentations are recorded and available under the continuing education lecture library webpage.
Seminars and Meetings
- AMRS Case Consultation,
- Child/Adult Team Case Consultation
- Integrated Care Team Meetings
- Feedback Informed Care Case Consultation
- Spanish-Speaking Provider Case Consultation
- Weekly Site Training Cohort Meeting
- Monthly Diversity Seminar
- Supervision of Supervision Training Seminar
All postdoctoral residents are supervised by licensed psychologists and are assigned to a primary supervisor and a secondary supervisor. The clinical supervisors meet with their assigned resident one hour per week for individual face-to-face supervision. Thus, each resident has two hours of individual supervision per week.
The primary and secondary supervisors are responsible for overseeing the direct delivery of clinical services. The primary supervisor takes a lead role in developing the resident’s learning plan, monitoring their progress, and evaluating their training schedule. The primary supervisor is also responsible for completing the resident’s evaluation after gathering input from other supervisors and staff who may have provided supplementary supervision during rotations or while co-facilitating groups with the resident. Additionally, track specific group supervision may be required.
Community Partnership Program
Reflecting Kaiser Permanente’s core commitment to mental health and wellness in our communities, each resident will spend at least 32 hours during their training year on a Community Partnership Project that focuses on improving mental health in the local community beyond our Kaiser Permanente patient members. Recent projects have included partnerships with Dozier Libbey Medical High School in Antioch, the KP Launch Summer Internship Program, and the Trinity Center in Walnut Creek.
The goal of this project is to provide outreach to underserved populations to promote health and advancement. Anchors for this project include developing alliances with individuals and/or systems to improve the lives of those served; providing education and training based on the empirical literature; and presenting relevant outcomes data to partnership stakeholders. Residents will meet with the Community Partnership supervisor to assist with placement and developing a project.
Residents complete neuropsychological assessments for adults and children and ADHD evaluations for adults during their training year. Residents also attend a psychological assessment seminar to consult on cases and receive supervision.
Each resident is required to undertake a program evaluation project during their training year. The project is selected based upon the resident’s interests and skill set and should fall within the regular scope of departmental services.
It may involve collecting and analyzing data to improve administrative operations, or a quality improvement project aimed at improving or assessing a treatment program or process. Examples include developing and evaluating a treatment group, intake procedure or other new programming; evaluating factors associated with treatment outcomes; or a needs assessment of a service that may be enriched by psychological consultation. Residents meet with the program evaluation supervisor as a group regularly over the course of the training year to review progress on their projects.
Tracks and Rotations
Eating Disorder Treatment Track
This specialty mental health track is focused on the highest level of eating disorder outpatient treatment using exposure-based and family-based therapy for teens and exposure-based therapy for adults.
The main interventions are group-based, with the opportunity to follow individual patients in weekly case management. There is opportunity for multidisciplinary collaboration with adolescent medicine specialists, physicians and registered dieticians; as well as shadowing hospital-based clinicians on the inpatient adolescent eating disorders unit. Multicultural competency and sensitivity in the milieu and in provision of care is emphasized. Residents in this track will also have opportunity to specialize in another area of clinical work, based on their preference and clinical staff availability.
Intensive Outpatient Program - SPMI Track
The Intensive Outpatient Program is for adult patients who are at-risk of hospitalization or who have recently been hospitalized due to suicidality or homicidality. Group therapies form the structure of the two-week program which includes Dialectical Behavior Therapy and process components and individual weekly case management to assist in the transition to next level of care.
Consultation and collaboration with psychiatrists and therapists across treatment teams is widely used by the IOP team and enriches patient care at our multispecialty site. There is an opportunity to shadow hospital-based therapists who conduct 5150 evaluations at Walnut Creek Medical Center. Residents in this track will also have opportunity to specialize in another area of clinical work, based on their preference and clinical staff availability.
Addiction Medicine & Recovery Services Track
The programs in our AMRS track span outpatient treatment through intensive day treatment, which is the highest level of care in this service. Patients are in varying points of the recovery process. The main interventions are group based, with the opportunity to follow individual patients in weekly case management appointments.
Residents participate in a wide range of treatment modalities in a multidisciplinary integrated medical team. Residents in this track will also have the opportunity specialize in another area of clinical work, based on their preference and clinical staff availability.
Pediatric Health Psychology Track
The programs in this health psychology track take place in a Pediatric Medical Clinic, with pediatricians as the main referral source. Residents provide short term (1-3 session) interventions focused on parent training, anxiety, depression, or adjustment concerns.
Brief assessments are conducted in order to refer patients to other levels of care when needed or to connect patients to resources. Residents participate in medical department meetings and are integrated into the multidisciplinary team. Residents in this track may also have opportunity to serve as liaisons with specialty child psychiatry services.
Child Mental Health Track
The clinical work within this mental health track takes place on the Child Generalist Outpatient team. The work includes assessing for child ADHD, facilitating parent, teen, and child groups, and carrying an individual caseload.
The main treatments provided are Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy, Parent Training, Mindfulness, and process support. Available specialties are Transgender, Addiction Medicine, Intensive Outpatient, Teen Eating Disorder Outpatient, and Autism Care Coordination.
Trauma & Adult Mental Health Track
The programs within this mental health track include trauma recovery and adult generalist work. Trauma Recovery track work is consistent with the STAIR model and culminates in CPT or EMDR for the patient.
Residents will build on their trauma training by co-facilitating groups and engaging in individual therapy with a small caseload for a time limited period. Additional clinical work will be available with the Adult Generalist Outpatient team and may include the Depression Care Pathway, Anxiety Pathway, or carrying an individual therapy caseload.
40 hour weekly schedule. No overtime, nights or weekends required.
Hybrid schedule for all rotations, 9:00am – 5:30pm or similar MOB hours. Hours vary slightly by track with some early evening hours offered in some tracks. Flexible.
- 20 – 23 hours direct patient care,
- 2 – 4 hours didactic training,
- 2 hours individual supervision plus
- 3 – 4 hours group supervision,
- 1 – 2 hour program evaluation time, remaining time for documentation and indirect patient care
|Graduate||University/Institute||Track/Specialty Rotation||Current Position, Specialty & Location|
|Fabiola Estebanez||Addiction Medicine||Psychological Assistant with AMRS team at Kaiser Permanente Walnut Creek|
|Jennifer Raju||Eating Disorder & Addiction Medicine||Psychological Assistant with Eating Disorder team at Kaiser Permanente Walnut Creek|
|Victoria Torres||Adult Mental Health||Psychological Assistant with Behavioral Medicine team at Kaiser Permanente Walnut Creek|
|Child/Family Mental Health||Child, Family|
|Trauma & Adult Mental Health||Adult, Trauma|
|Pediatric Health Psychology||Pediatric Health Psychology|
|Intensive Outpatient & Adult Mental Health||Adult, Intensive Outpatient Services (IOP)|
|Addiction Medicine & Adult Mental Health||Addiction Medicine, Adult|
|Eating Disorder & Adult Mental Health||Adult, Eating Disorders|
I would highly recommend the postdoctoral residency program at Kaiser Walnut Creek. Through the program I received a wide range of opportunities to grow as clinician and professional in the field. The types of adult patients you can see are highly diverse in their presenting problems and backgrounds (ethnicity, social economic status, age, etc.). You will leave the program feeling prepared for anything. Additionally, the supervisors are so kind, supportive, and caring. I truly felt that they were invested in my professional and personal growth. The weekly group supervision provided a valuable space to connect with and learn from residents at other locations in the East Bay. The educational benefits for EPPP and CPLEE preparation reduced my financial burdens and allowed me to focus on also completing all my licensure requirements during the training year. I feel very grateful to have been able to complete my last training year at Kaiser Walnut Creek.
Postdoctoral Resident 2018-2019
I have found the postdoctoral program at Kaiser Walnut Creek to be the perfect balance of receiving support and protection as a trainee with the respect of being treated as a colleague. I felt embedded and included within two different teams and the staff were reliably warm and competent. It has been a busy, rewarding, and challenging year.
Postdoctoral Resident 2018-2019
This post-doctoral residency training program is well-coordinated, highly supportive, and an incredible forum for professional growth. I am constantly grateful for the supervised experienced I received and continue to encourage others to apply.
Postdoctoral Resident 2018-2019
I was a child postdoctoral resident at Walnut Creek. I really enjoyed my training and feel that the experience I gained throughout my year there has helped me immeasurably as a clinician. I appreciated the diversity of training, which included exposure to various clinical presentations, working with people of different ethnic, racial, and socio-economic statuses, facilitating groups, completing a program evaluation project, and conducting neuropsychological testing. These training experiences helped expand my understanding of the field and hone my diagnostic and clinical skills. In addition to the training, the people at Kaiser were wonderful to work with. I was welcomed and included by the staff and felt that my input and opinions were valued. The supervisors were supportive and flexible, providing a level of guidance that felt nurturing and allowed me to become increasingly independent over the year. All-in-all, I believe that Kaiser was a great place to round out my training.
Postdoctoral Resident 2017-2018
- East Bay ConsortiumAccredited by the American Psychological Association (APA)
- Questions related to the program’s accredited status should be directed to the Commission on Accreditation: Office of Program Consultation and Accreditation American Psychological Association 750 1st Street, NE, Washington, DC 20002 Phone: (202) 336-5979 / E-mail: email@example.com Web: www.apa.org/ed/accreditation
Walnut Creek Mental Health & Addiction Medicine Department: Integrated Outpatient Mental Health, EDO & Addiction Medicine. Full spectrum of mental health services for members of all ages
710 South Broadway
Walnut Creek, CA 94596
Walnut Creek Medical Offices Building: OBGYN & Pediatrics Outpatient Departments
1425 S. Main Street
Walnut Creek, CA 94596
Margot Green, PhD
Ana Zdravkovic Simo, PhD
Training Program Director
Member of the Association of Psychology Postdoctoral and Internship Centers (APPIC)