Doris F. Chang, PhD

    Associate Professor, Silver School of Social Work, New York University
    Co-Investigator, New York State Psychiatric Institute’s Center for Excellence in Cultural Competence

    Please click here to read Dr. Chang’s CV. 

    Doris F. Chang is an Associate Professor at NYU Silver School of Social Work. She completed her Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the University of California, Los Angeles and an NIMH postdoctoral fellowship in medical anthropology at the Department of Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School. At NYU, she teaches didactic and practicum courses on race, ethnicity, culture and mental health. She is also a licensed psychologist who maintains a private practice in New York City.

    Dr. Chang’s research seeks to improve the well-being of racial and ethnic minorities by a) clarifying the role of race, ethnicity, language and culture in shaping mental health and quality of care, b) identifying strategies for improving interracial processes and outcomes, and c) developing inclusive, culturally-grounded interventions for clinical and educational contexts that integrate mindfulness and other contemplative traditions. She has particular expertise in Asian American mental health and diversity, equity, and inclusion practices in education.  In 2018, she was awarded a PEACE grant from the Mind and Life Institute to develop and pilot a mindfulness-based critical consciousness training program for K-5 teachers. Her work with the Center of Excellence for Cultural Competence aims at developing a web-based model of bilingual health communication that trains interpreters to act as cultural brokers to facilitate cultural understanding and communication between providers and patients with limited English proficiency.

    Previously, Dr. Chang was Director of Clinical Training and Associate Professor of Psychology at the New School for Social Research. She is a Fellow of the Asian American Psychological Association and is a member of the Executive Committee of the APA’s Society for the Psychological Study of Culture, Ethnicity, and Race. In 2006, she received the Early Career Award from the Asian American Psychological Association.

        Pablo Méndez-Bustos, PhD

        Pablo Méndez-Bustos is a clinical/health psychologist and Assistant Professor at the Universidad Católica del Maule in Chile. In 2014, he obtained a Ph.D. of Clinical and Health Psychology from the Autonomous University of Madrid in Spain. He also obtained a Master of Social Research and Development from the Universidad de Concepción in Chile (2007) and a Master of Research Design and Applications in Psychology and Health from the University of Granada in Spain (2011). His thesis was on the “Analysis of Suicidal Behavior in Risk Sub-populations”. His research interests involve developing effective prevention strategies for and in understanding the nature/treatment of suicidal behavior and various psychiatric disorders. Pablo participates in a Center’s project to develop a financial wellness intervention to reduce psychological distress and suicide risk.

            Ivan C. Balán, PhD

            Associate Professor of Clinical Medical Psychology, Department of Psychiatry at Columbia University’s College of Physicians and Surgeons

            Please click here to read Dr. Balan’s CV.

            Dr. Ivan Balán focuses his research on global HIV prevention, Latino mental health, LGBT mental health, and motivational interviewing interventions.

            Dr. Balán is a graduate of Rutgers University (undergraduate) and the California School of Professional Psychology (graduate). Over his 25 years at the Columbia University Medical Center, he has worked as a clinician and researcher.  His research has been published in over 60 professional journals and he has developed numerous intervention manuals including Options in HIV Prevention:  A Participant-Centered Counseling Approach for women in Sub-Saharan Africa using the Dapivarine vaginal ring for HIV prevention, Participant-Centered Adherence Counseling to support adherence to novel biomedical HIV prevention approaches among men who have sex with men,  Substance Use Comorbidity Care: Evidence-Based Stepped Care Strategies for Depression, Motivational Behavioral Activation Therapy for Depression, Integrated Treatment for Problem Gambling, and Motivational Enhancement Therapy for Psychiatric Referral.

            He is a member of the American Psychological Association and of the Motivational Interviewing Network of Trainers (MINT) organization and served as the Chair of the MINT International Advisory Committee.

                Ravi DeSilva, MD, MA

                Assistant Professor of Psychiatry, Columbia University Irving Medical Center /New York State Psychiatric Institute

                Ravi DeSilva, MD, MA is the former Unit Chief of inpatient psychiatry at Columbia University Irving Medical Center and serves in the United States Navy Medical Corps.  His work and research interests include acute care psychiatry, systems and group therapy, medical education, and cultural and visual anthropology.

                He received his MD from the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry and his MA in Cultural Anthropology from the University of Kansas. He completed two years of general surgery training before joining and completing his Psychiatry residency at Columbia University/New York State Psychiatric Institute.

                Dr. DeSilva is certified by ABPN in psychiatry and his research has received grant funding from the Research Foundation for Mental Health, the Levy Foundation, and the New York State Office of Mental Health, where he received an OMH Policy Scholar Award grant to further the development of a web based teaching module for cultural psychiatry.

                He has worked with the American Psychiatric Association, American Group Psychotherapy Association, Eastern Group Psychotherapy Association, and the Society for the Study of Psychiatry and Culture. His research has been published in Ethnicity & Health, Culture, Medicine, and Psychiatry, and the Journal of Medical Humanities. Dr. DeSilva is also a contributor to the fifth edition (2013) of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.

                Dr. DeSilva continues to be involved in visual media and ethnographic film. Most recently his photographic work appeared as part of a group exhibit at the Museum of the City of New York, Rising Waters 2.0: More Photographs of Sandy.

                    Sapana Patel, PhD

                    Assistant Professor of Clinical Psychology, Department of Psychiatry at Columbia University’s College of Physicians and Surgeons
                    Research Associate, Anxiety Disorders Clinic of the New York State Psychiatric Institute

                    Dr. Sapana Patel, PhD focuses her research on the development and implementation of quality improvement initiatives for mental health care delivery in primary and specialty care settings, with an emphasis in patient-centered care to improve the delivery and quality of mental health services through treatment preferences and shared decision-making, where patients and providers combine efforts as active participants in treatment choices.

                    She has completed two NIMH research fellowships and was the recipient of a Mentored Patient Oriented Research Career Development Award to develop and test a decision aid for depressed African Americans and Hispanics at a Federally Qualified Health Centers in New York City. Her implementation research efforts focus on the dissemination and implementation of collaborative care models and e-health interventions to improve access to care for mental illness.

                    Dr. Patel is a graduate of Boston University and Yeshiva University in New York, where she earned her PhD in 2004.

                      Are you interested in learning more about the research we perform here at the CECC? Please see the CECC Research Initiatives page to learn more.