Heather-Walter-MD

Heather Walter, MD, MPH

Senior Associate in Psychiatry

Senior Lecturer on Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School

    Contact: 617-355-1553

Medical Services

Departments

  • Psychiatry

Languages

  • English
To schedule an appointment: Call 617-355-1553
Heather-Walter-MD

 

My professional life has been guided by my quest to bring the highest quality care to society’s most vulnerable yet most promising citizens – its children. Over the past decade, under my leadership the Committee on Quality Issues of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (AACAP) has developed and published over 25 clinical practice guidelines pertaining to the field of child and adolescent psychiatry. Over the next decade, our committee will be revising previously published treatment-focused guidelines (e.g., for depression, anxiety, bipolar, PTSD, ADHD, disruptive behavior, substance use) in accordance with new standards for guideline development promulgated by the Institute of Medicine. We also will continue to develop and publish AACAP best principles addressing the behavioral health needs of specific populations of children and adolescents, including youth in school, foster care, pediatric primary care, and juvenile justice settings; youth identifying with cultural, sexual, and gender minority groups; youth exposed to disasters; and youth coping with chronic physical illness. I am grateful to have been afforded the opportunity throughout my career to help our children build happy, healthy, and successful lives.

Experience and Education

Education

Medical School

Loma Linda University, 1974 (MD)

Loma Linda, CA

Internship

Loma Linda University Medical Center, 1975

Loma Linda, CA

Graduate School

University of California Los Angeles, 1981 (MPH, Epidemiology)

Los Angeles, CA

Residency (Preventive Medicine)

University of California at Los Angeles Medical Center, 1981

Los Angeles, CA

Residency (General Psychiatry)

New York University Medical Center/Bellvue Hospital Center, 1986

New York, NY

Fellowship

Columbia-Presbyterian Medical Center/New York State Psychiatric Institute, 1988

New York, NY

Certifications

  • Child and Adolescent Psychiatry

  • Preventive Medicine

  • Public Health

Professional History

My early career as a federally-funded researcher in preventive medicine/public health focused on the development, implementation, and evaluation of school-based preventive interventions targeted at pediatric risk factors (hypercholesterolemia, hypertension, obesity, poor physical fitness, cigarette smoking) for the adult development of cardiovascular disease and cancer, and at risk factors (early, unprotected sexual activity) for the development of sexually transmitted diseases including HIV/AIDS. Later, I expanded my community-based work to include the development, implementation, and evaluation of stepped clinical interventions targeted at the assessment and management of child and adolescent psychiatric disorders in school and pediatric primary care settings. I currently lead the BCH Department of Psychiatry’s (DoP) initiatives in pediatric integrated behavioral health care, serving as Harvard Medical School course director for the Pediatric Physicians’ Organization at Children’s Behavioral Health Learning Community, DoP team medical director for the statewide Massachusetts Child Psychiatry Access Project, and consultant to the DoP Children’s Hospital Neighborhood Partnerships program. In addition to my research and clinical interests, I have over 20 years of administrative experience in child and adolescent psychiatry, having served as medical director of psychiatric outpatient services at Children’s Memorial Hospital in Chicago and chief of child and adolescent psychiatry at Boston Medical Center. I also achieved the rank of Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine and Professor of Psychiatry and Pediatrics at Boston University School of Medicine. I also achieved the rank of Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine and Professor of Psychiatry and Pediatrics at Boston University School of Medicine.

Publications

Publications powered by Harvard Catalyst Profiles
  1. Soria-Saucedo R, Walter HJ, Cabral H, England MJ, Kazis LE. Receipt of Evidence-Based Pharmacotherapy and Psychotherapy Among Children and Adolescents With New Diagnoses of Depression. Psychiatr Serv. 2016 Mar; 67(3):316-23.
  2. Lee T, Fouras G, Brown R. Practice parameter for the assessment and management of youth involved with the child welfare system. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2015 Jun; 54(6):502-17.
  3. Lock J, La Via MC. Practice parameter for the assessment and treatment of children and adolescents with eating disorders. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2015 May; 54(5):412-25.
  4. Silverstein M, Hironaka LK, Walter HJ, Feinberg E, Sandler J, Pellicer M, Chen N, Cabral H. Collaborative care for children with ADHD symptoms: a randomized comparative effectiveness trial. Pediatrics. 2015 Apr; 135(4):e858-67.
  5. Volkmar F, Siegel M, Woodbury-Smith M, King B, McCracken J, State M. Practice parameter for the assessment and treatment of children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorder. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2014 Feb; 53(2):237-57.
  6. Murphy TK, Lewin AB, Storch EA, Stock S. Practice parameter for the assessment and treatment of children and adolescents with tic disorders. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2013 Dec; 52(12):1341-59.
  7. Pfefferbaum B, Shaw JA. Practice parameter on disaster preparedness. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2013 Nov; 52(11):1224-38.
  8. Pumariega AJ, Rothe E, Mian A, Carlisle L, Toppelberg C, Harris T, Gogineni RR, Webb S, Smith J. Practice parameter for cultural competence in child and adolescent psychiatric practice. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2013 Oct; 52(10):1101-15.
  9. McClellan J, Stock S. Practice parameter for the assessment and treatment of children and adolescents with schizophrenia. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2013 Sep; 52(9):976-90.
  10. Adelson SL. Practice parameter on gay, lesbian, or bisexual sexual orientation, gender nonconformity, and gender discordance in children and adolescents. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2012 Sep; 51(9):957-74.
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  12. Kernberg PF, Ritvo R, Keable H. Practice Parameter for psychodynamic psychotherapy with children. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2012 May; 51(5):541-57.
  13. Practice parameter for the assessment and treatment of children and adolescents with obsessive-compulsive disorder. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2012 Jan; 51(1):98-113.
  14. Kraus LJ, Thomas CR, Bukstein OG, Walter HJ, Benson RS, Chrisman A, Farchione TR, Hamilton J, Keable H, Kinlan J, Schoettle U, Siegel M, Stock S, Ptakowski KK, Medicus J. Practice parameter for child and adolescent forensic evaluations. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2011 Dec; 50(12):1299-312.
  15. Walter HJ, Gouze K, Cicchetti C, Arend R, Mehta T, Schmidt J, Skvarla M. A pilot demonstration of comprehensive mental health services in inner-city public schools. J Sch Health. 2011 Apr; 81(4):185-93.
  16. Cohen JA, Bukstein O, Walter H, Benson SR, Chrisman A, Farchione TR, Hamilton J, Keable H, Kinlan J, Schoettle U, Siegel M, Stock S, Medicus J. Practice parameter for the assessment and treatment of children and adolescents with posttraumatic stress disorder. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2010 Apr; 49(4):414-30.
  17. Practice parameter on the use of psychotropic medication in children and adolescents. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2009 Sep; 48(9):961-73.
  18. DeMaso DR, Martini DR, Cahen LA, Bukstein O, Walter HJ, Benson S, Chrisman A, Farchione T, Hamilton J, Keable H, Kinlan J, Schoettle U, Siegel M, Stock S, Ptakowski KK, Medicus J. Practice parameter for the psychiatric assessment and management of physically ill children and adolescents. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2009 Feb; 48(2):213-33.
  19. Myers K, Cain S. Practice parameter for telepsychiatry with children and adolescents. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2008 Dec; 47(12):1468-83.
  20. Birmaher B, Brent D, Bernet W, Bukstein O, Walter H, Benson RS, Chrisman A, Farchione T, Greenhill L, Hamilton J, Keable H, Kinlan J, Schoettle U, Stock S, Ptakowski KK, Medicus J. Practice parameter for the assessment and treatment of children and adolescents with depressive disorders. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2007 Nov; 46(11):1503-26.
  21. Pliszka S. Practice parameter for the assessment and treatment of children and adolescents with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2007 Jul; 46(7):894-921.
  22. Josephson AM. Practice parameter for the assessment of the family. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2007 Jul; 46(7):922-37.
  23. Connolly SD, Bernstein GA. Practice parameter for the assessment and treatment of children and adolescents with anxiety disorders. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2007 Feb; 46(2):267-83.
  24. Winters NC, Pumariga A. Practice parameter on child and adolescent mental health care in community systems of care. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2007 Feb; 46(2):284-99.
  25. McClellan J, Kowatch R, Findling RL. Practice parameter for the assessment and treatment of children and adolescents with bipolar disorder. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2007 Jan; 46(1):107-25.
  26. Steiner H, Remsing L. Practice parameter for the assessment and treatment of children and adolescents with oppositional defiant disorder. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2007 Jan; 46(1):126-41.
  27. Walter HJ, Gouze K, Lim KG. Teachers' beliefs about mental health needs in inner city elementary schools. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2006 Jan; 45(1):61-8.
  28. Walter HJ, Berkovitz IH. Practice parameter for psychiatric consultation to schools. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2005 Oct; 44(10):1068-83.
  29. Walter HJ. School-based prevention of problem behaviors. Child Adolesc Psychiatr Clin N Am. 2001 Jan; 10(1):117-27, ix.
  30. Vaughan RD, McCarthy JF, Walter HJ, Resnicow K, Waterman PD, Armstrong B, Tiezzi L. The development, reliability, and validity of a risk factor screening survey for urban minority junior high school students. J Adolesc Health. 1996 Sep; 19(3):171-8.
  31. Walter HJ, Vaughan RD, Armstrong B, Krakoff RY, Tiezzi L, McCarthy JF. Characteristics of users and nonusers of health clinics in inner-city junior high schools. J Adolesc Health. 1996 May; 18(5):344-8.
  32. Vaughan RD, McCarthy JF, Armstrong B, Walter HJ, Waterman PD, Tiezzi L. Carrying and using weapons: A survey of minority junior high school students in New York City. Am J Public Health. 1996 Apr; 86(4):568-72.
  33. Walter HJ, Vaughan RD, Armstrong B, Krakoff RY, Tiezzi L, McCarthy JF. School-based health care for urban minority junior high school students. Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 1995 Nov; 149(11):1221-5.
  34. Walter HJ, Vaughan RD, Armstrong B, Krakoff RY, Maldonado LM, Tiezzi L, McCarthy JF. Sexual, assaultive, and suicidal behaviors among urban minority junior high school students. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 1995 Jan; 34(1):73-80.
  35. Walter HJ, Vaughan RD, Ragin DF, Cohall AT, Kasen S. Prevalence and correlates of AIDS-related behavioral intentions among urban minority high school students. AIDS Educ Prev. 1994 Aug; 6(4):339-50.
  36. Walter HJ, Vaughan RD, Ragin DF, Cohall AT, Kasen S, Fullilove RE. Prevalence and correlates of AIDS-risk behaviors among urban minority high school students. Prev Med. 1993 Nov; 22(6):813-24.
  37. Walter HJ, Vaughan RD, Cohall AT. Comparison of three theoretical models of substance use among urban minority high school students. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 1993 Sep; 32(5):975-81.
  38. Walter HJ, Vaughan RD. AIDS risk reduction among a multiethnic sample of urban high school students. JAMA. 1993 Aug 11; 270(6):725-30.
  39. Walter HJ, Vaughan RD, Gladis MM, Ragin DF, Kasen S, Cohall AT. Factors associated with AIDS-related behavioral intentions among high school students in an AIDS epicenter. Health Educ Q. 1993; 20(3):409-20.
  40. Walter HJ, Vaughan RD, Gladis MM, Ragin DF, Kasen S, Cohall AT. Factors associated with AIDS risk behaviors among high school students in an AIDS epicenter. Am J Public Health. 1992 Apr; 82(4):528-32.
  41. Kasen S, Vaughan RD, Walter HJ. Self-efficacy for AIDS preventive behaviors among tenth grade students. Health Educ Q. 1992; 19(2):187-202.
  42. Gladis MM, Michela JL, Walter HJ, Vaughan RD. High school students' perceptions of AIDS risk: realistic appraisal or motivated denial? Health Psychol. 1992; 11(5):307-16.
  43. Walter HJ, Vaughan RD, Cohall AT. Psychosocial influences on acquired immunodeficiency syndrome-risk behaviors among high school students. Pediatrics. 1991 Oct; 88(4):846-52.
  44. Walter HJ, Vaughan RD, Cohall AT. Risk factors for substance use among high school students: implications for prevention. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 1991 Jul; 30(4):556-62.
  45. Vaughan RD, Walter HJ, Gladis MM. Steroid use among adolescents: another look. AIDS. 1991 Jan; 5(1):112-3.
  46. Hofman A, Walter HJ. The association between physical fitness and cardiovascular disease risk factors in children in a five-year follow-up study. Int J Epidemiol. 1989 Dec; 18(4):830-5.
  47. Walter HJ, Vaughan RD, Wynder EL. Primary prevention of cancer among children: changes in cigarette smoking and diet after six years of intervention. J Natl Cancer Inst. 1989 Jul 5; 81(13):995-9.
  48. Bush PJ, Zuckerman AE, Theiss PK, Taggart VS, Horowitz C, Sheridan MJ, Walter HJ. Cardiovascular risk factor prevention in black schoolchildren: two-year results of the "Know Your Body" program. Am J Epidemiol. 1989 Mar; 129(3):466-82.
  49. Walter HJ. Primary prevention of chronic disease among children: the school-based "Know Your Body" intervention trials. Health Educ Q. 1989; 16(2):201-14.
  50. Walter HJ, Wynder EL. The development, implementation, evaluation, and future directions of a chronic disease prevention program for children: the "Know Your Body" studies. Prev Med. 1989 Jan; 18(1):59-71.
  51. Zuckerman AE, Olevsky-Peleg E, Bush PJ, Horowitz C, Davidson FR, Brown DG, Walter HJ. Cardiovascular risk factors among black schoolchildren: comparisons among four Know Your Body studies. Prev Med. 1989 Jan; 18(1):113-32.
  52. Walter HJ, Hofman A, Vaughan RD, Wynder EL. Modification of risk factors for coronary heart disease. Five-year results of a school-based intervention trial. N Engl J Med. 1988 Apr 28; 318(17):1093-100.
  53. Walter HJ, Hofman A. Socioeconomic status, ethnic origin, and risk factors for coronary heart disease in children. Am Heart J. 1987 Mar; 113(3):812-8.
  54. Hofman A, Walter HJ, Connelly PA, Vaughan RD. Blood pressure and physical fitness in children. Hypertension. 1987 Feb; 9(2):188-91.
  55. Walter HJ, Hofman A, Connelly PA, Barrett LT, Kost KL. Coronary heart disease prevention in childhood: one-year results of a randomized intervention study. Am J Prev Med. 1986 Jul-Aug; 2(4):239-45.
  56. Walter HJ, Hofman A, Connelly PA, Barrett LT, Kost KL. Primary prevention of chronic disease in childhood: changes in risk factors after one year of intervention. Am J Epidemiol. 1985 Nov; 122(5):772-81.
  57. Walter HJ, Connelly PA. Screening for risk factors as a component of a chronic disease prevention program for youth. J Sch Health. 1985 May; 55(5):183-8.
To schedule an appointment: Call 617-355-1553

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