David N. Osser, MD, completed his psychiatric residency in 1976 at Massachusetts Mental Health Center in Boston, Massachusetts. He is Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and an author of 50 academic products, including journal articles, software, monographs, book chapters, and refereed abstracts. He has worked in various positions for the Massachusetts Department of Mental Health and Taunton State Hospital for the past 23 years. He is also on the staff of the Brockton VA Medical Center, where he is the psychiatrist for the domiciliary program for homeless veterans, and he maintains affiliations with Boston's Beth Israel /Deaconess and Faulkner Hospitals.
For the past 15 years, Dr. Osser has been focusing on the development of systematic, comprehensive algorithmic approaches to the psychopharmacologic treatment of psychiatric disorders. In collaboration with Robert Patterson, MD, Dr. Osser developed his first computerized algorithm in 1991. Entitled "The Neuroleptic-Resistant Psychosis Psychopharmacology Consultant," it gave an interactive consultation on certain difficult-to-manage patients. This issue of Psychiatric Annals describes the present state of this and other algorithms, and of Internet-based computer applications that use them.
Dr. Osser is active as a teacher. In the past several years, he has received awards for outstanding teaching from the senior classes of two Harvard psychiatry residency training programs, from the Massachusetts Psychiatric Society, and from the Alliance for the Mentally Hl of Massachusetts. He has chaired symposia at the past four American Psychiatric Association annual meetings on the subject of pharmacotherapy algorithms, and has presented his computer programs at media sessions during the past eight meetings.
Dr. Osser is a member of the Depression Algorithm Group of the International Psychopharmacology Algorithm Project. This organization, headed by Ken Jobson, MD, sponsored a series of Internet web conferences in 1997 in which the members collaborated in the production of consensus algorithms for depression and schizophrenia.1 In 1998, Dr. Osser went to Japan at the invitation of the Japanese Psychopharmacology Algorithm Project (JPAP) to present his schizophrenia algorithm. He also was one of six international psychiatrists invited to comment in closed session on drafts of algorithms prepared by members of the JPAP for use in Japan.
1. Trivedi MH, DeBattista C, Fawcett J, Nelson JC, Osser DN, Stein D, Jobson K. Developing treatment algorithms for unipolar depression in cyberspace: Internationa] Psychopharmacology Algorithm Project. Psychopharmacology Bull. 1998;34: 355-359.