Gaba Telepsychiatry

Forensic Psychiatrist

When do you need a Forensic Psychiatrist or Psychiatrist Expert Witness?

You may need a forensic psychiatrist or psychiatrist expert witness in areas of law such as criminal defence, family law, undue influence, guardianship, mental health defence, fitness for duty, Sexual Offenders Registration, Fitness to work and personal injury. A psychiatrist expert witness should provide credible testimony and bridge the gap between psychiatry and law by presenting biopsychosocial factors in a manner that is legally relevant and should be taken into consideration during prosecution and sentencing.

Finding a Psychiatrist Expert Witness

Dr Gundu Reddy is a Board Certified Psychiatrist. She has trained at Kings College London, ( UMDS), Mount Sinai School of Medicine and has pursued psychodynamic psychotherapy training at the NYU Psychoanalytic Institute.

Dr Reddy has served on both the Forensic Committee and Ethics Committee at Manhattan Psychiatric Centre, and has fourteen years experience as a forensic psychiatrist expert witness, both in the private and public sector. She has made over thirty court experiences as an expert witness and is known for her clear and relevant testimony.

Dr Reddy believes in performing through evaluations, taking into account developmental factors, as well as psychiatric symptoms psychodynamic and external factors. She takes care to make sure that her evaluations are consistent with medical records, and writes a clear explanation for discrepancies and difference in opinion. She believes that her training in psychodynamic psychotherapy at the NYU psychoanalytic institute has been crucial in presenting the relevance of dynamic factors in the legal system.

Dr Gundu Reddy has a special interest in criminal defence, and parenting evaluations. She believes that all mitigating factors need to be taken into account before reaching a guilty verdict and sentencing, in order to work towards a fair justice system. Many individuals suffering from mental illness, do not receive adequate representation due to lack of psychiatric evaluation or expert witness testimony.

Dr Reddy has served as both a clinical psychiatrist and as a forensic psychiatrist at Manhattan Psychiatric Center for three years. She has made over thirty court appearances as an expert witness, and written over a three hundred psychiatric evaluations for Mental Health Court. She has also conducted psychiatric Evaluations and Risk assessment Evaluation RAI for individuals being discharged from Kirby Medical Center. She has also served in both the forensic and ethics committee at Manhattan Psychiatric Centre, and has supervised NYU residents , during their forensic psychiatry clinical rotations.

Dr Reddy can provide online psychiatric evaluations and testimony during the covid lockdown, in both the US and Canada.

Can a forensic Psychiatrist Provide a ‘Not guilty by reason of insanity defence’?

Although a psychiatric evaluation may not change a ‘guilty,’ or ‘not guilty,’ verdict, the severity of the charge and the length of sentencing can be very much depend on an expert testimony.

A clear well written expert psychiatric evaluation with or without testimony, by increasing a judge or jury’s understanding of the individual, and mitigating factors leading to the individual breaking the law, can lead to an individual being released on parole, or be granted a ‘sentence served.’ verdict.’

Factors Determining the length of sentence, and whether a person receives a jail sentence can include :

  • Whether an individual intended to commit a crime.
  • The presence of mental illness.
  • Vulnerability to coercion.
  • Presence of Medical illness and side effects to medication.
  • External mitigating factors.
  • Risk Assessment as to the individual’s likeliness to reoffend, demonstration of internal and external protective factors which would prevent an individual from reoffending.
  • Dangerousness and risk to the community – Demonstrating that an individual would not be a danger to the community of released.
  • Community Supports – demonstrating that an individual has adequate community supports to prevent relapse of mental illness or psychotic symptoms.
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Clinical Services: California, Florida, Illinois, New Jersey, New York, South Carolina, Tennessee

Forensic Psychiatry Services: All of the US and Canada

Forensic psychiatrists and forensic psychologists can both conduct clinical evaluations. However, a forensic psychiatrist is a medical doctor who has completed a psychiatry residency and is Board Certified in the field of Psychiatry and Neurology and may have completed a forensic psychiatry fellowship. A forensic psychiatrist can evaluate and also testify in court about social and biological aspects of mental illness or disorders . This includes genetic, developmental, endocrine, infectious, neoplastic, neurological, structural pharmacological and other causes of mental illness and changes in behavior. A forensic psychiatrist can recommend laboratory tests and medications if needed.

Either the individual client, the attorney, law firm, or the Court will pay the expert witness fees.

Forensic psychiatrists are held to high standards of professional ethics. They must follow the general ethics of the medical profession, including the Hippocratic Oath and the Oath of Geneva.

A forensic psychiatrist or psychiatrist expert witness must be able to differentiate the subjective from the objective.

A forensic psychiatrist or psychiatrist expert witness must perform a through psychiatric evaluation, allow the client to explain their version of events, and an explanation of charges.

A forensic psychiatrist or psychiatrist expert witness must act in the best interest of the client by presenting all relevant data that will assist the client in receiving a fair representation and not omit relevant information or cut corners.

A forensic psychiatrist must put aside their own personal bias or feelings and present all the information required for the client to have fair representation.

A forensic psychiatrist must perform a through records review, and obtain all relevant facts that will assist the client.

A forensic psychiatrist must not omit information that may not show the client in a good light, but must provide a complete explanation as to mitigating circumstances, so as to allow relevant parties to understand mitigating circumstances and explain what efforts the client has made to receive treatment and reduce future risk.

A forensic psychiatrist who says things which are not credible, not believable or not true, is likely to harm a client because the whole testimony and report will lose credibility and recommendations are unlikely to be followed. A good psychiatrist expert witness will say things which are truthful, but present all relevant data clearly that would be helpful to the client and be in the best interest of the client and the community as a whole.

The Forensic Psychiatrist provides psychiatric consultation in legal matters, and provides expert testimony in court cases. A Forensic Psychiatrist should bridge the gap between law and psychiatry Areas of law where a forensic psychiatrist may be required include:

Child Custody and Parenting Evaluations:

Civil Law and Personal Injury

  • Criminal Defense
  • Insanity Defense and Mental Health Defense
  • Ability to Work
  • Undue Influence Evaluations
  • Fitness for Duty Evaluations
  • Sex offender risk Evaluations or SORA RAI

Telepsychiatry is expanding globally due to convenience & good outcomes

How is Telepsychiatry different from an office visit?

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Telepsychiatry is the same as in a psychiatrist office visit. Precisely the same rules, regulations and standards of care apply. Psychiatrists must be licensed, insured and certified in the State where they are practicing. They must follow APA guidelines and standards of care.

Is Telepsychiatry safe?
 

Is Telepsychiatry safe?

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Telepsychiatry is as safe and private as an office visit if practiced correctly: Psychiatrists must see patients via an encrypted HIPAA compliant platform. Notes must be stored on a secure cloud-based Electronic Health Records software. The same data security rules apply for Telehealth.

Is Telepsychiatry effective?

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There is an increasing amount of research demonstrating telepsychiatry to be as effective as in-office visits and in some cases more effective. Reasons for the high efficacy of telepsychiatry include a patient having a more excellent choice in of psychiatrist or specialist treatment with less geographic limitation and higher compliance rates due to more convenient access to appointments.

Is Telepsychiatry right for me?

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Telepsychiatry is favorable for people who want to see a particular psychiatrist but are limited by location, weather conditions, access to childcare, or who need specialist treatment. If you travel for work, if you merely dislike traveling to appointments and psychiatrist waiting rooms, or you need evening or weekend appointments, telepsychiatry may be right for you.