How to Become a Member

The San Diego Psychiatric Society is a professional association in the State of California that focuses exclusively on the needs of physicians who specialize in psychiatry. The Society addresses all aspects of psychiatric care. Our membership includes public, academic, military and private practice psychiatrists, as well as psychiatric residents and fellows.

Why Belonging is Important

  • We maintain a strong voice in the California Legislature and State Regulatory agencies, advocating for the profession and our patients.
  • We provide psychiatric representation at the California Medical Association.
  • We participate and provide leadership in coalitions with other mental health professionals, patient and family groups to advocate for access to quality care to end stigma and discrimination against patients and psychiatric treatments.
  • We provide education about psychiatric disorders by working with the news media and disseminating accurate information to patients/consumers, family members and the general public.
  • We offer quality CME programs through scientific meetings.
  • We represent San Diego psychiatrists in matters before the American Psychiatric Association.
  • We are your advocate and representative in these challenging times. Without a strong and unified organization, who else will advocate for the interests of psychiatry?

Why Join SDPS and APA?

Who would be fighting now against proposed state regulations that give medical authority to psychologists and allow other medical professionals to practice without physician oversight? No one.

What collective voice for psychiatry would work with the new Congress and administration as a new national health care plan is drafted? None.

What organization would give us a national presence on such diverse topics as patient rights, medical ethics, unbiased research, medical education and evidence-based treatment guidelines? None.

Without the San Diego Psychiatric Society and the American Psychiatric Association, who would manage members’ concerns, engage residents, assist psychiatrists early in their careers, and lobby local and state lawmakers on matters critical to our community's mental health care system? Who would serve as the conduit to our state and national organizations? That's right, no one!

If you agree that we need an APA, a CPA and a SDPS to do all of the above, who should pay for these professional societies? Just some of us? Or do all psychiatrists have a duty to chip in and pull their own weight?

All psychiatrists, regardless of their practice settings, benefit from the advocacy of our national, state and local organizations. As individuals, we have little power to affect society or its government. However, as a collective body, we have a dramatic impact.

There is power in numbers and we need every psychiatrist in our community to participate. It is unfair that some who decline to join the APA enjoy the fruits of the labor and financial sacrifices of those who are members. Moreover, every member we lose weakens organized psychiatry. If you are not a member, please join. If you are a member, please continue your membership and encourage a colleague to join.

Click here to join

Qualifications for Membership

The San Diego Psychiatric Society and American Psychiatric Society are organizations composed of medical specialists who are qualified, or in the process of becoming qualified, as psychiatrists.

The basic eligibility requirement is completion of a residency program (or currently enrolled in an accredited residency training program) in psychiatry, accredited by the Residency Review Committee for Psychiatry of the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME), the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (RCPS) or the American Osteopathic Association (AOA).

Applicants for membership must also hold a valid medical license. The exception for a valid medical license is if you hold an academic, research or governmental position that does not require licensure.

The APA has a dual membership requirement whereby APA members must also be members of the district branch within whose jurisdiction they reside or practice. Likewise, to be an SDPS member, you must also be a member of the APA.

For more information on becoming a member, please click here.

How to Apply

If you wish to apply for membership in the San Diego Psychiatric Society and American Psychiatric Society, or would like more information, please contact us at:

San Diego Psychiatric Society
7770 Regents Rd #113, PMB 386
San Diego, CA 92122
Phone:  858-279-4586
Fax:  858-228-9783

Executive Director


Call the APA Office of Membership at (703) 907-7300.