Dr. Eric Plakun Running for APA Area 1 Trustee



Eric M. Plakun, MD, DLFAPA, FACPsych, Associate Medical Director and Director of AdmissionsThe Austen Riggs Center stands for an integrated biopsychosocial model in the broader mental health field, in clinical practice, in teaching, in research, in advocacy, and in organized psychiatry as well as in psychoanalysis. Several Riggs clinicians represent that biopsychosocial approach in their work beyond the Riggs campus. 

One important example is the work of Associate Medical Director and Director of Biopsychosocial Advocacy Eric Plakun, MD, whose ongoing leadership and involvement in the American Psychiatric Association (APA) now finds him running for APA Area 1 Trustee. Area 1 covers all of New England and Eastern Canada.

According to Dr. Plakun, “As the field drifts toward a biomedical model, with 15-minute med checks becoming a frequent practice model, I hope to bring a solid biopsychosocial perspective to the Board of Trustees, representing Area 1, born out of my training, practice, and senior leadership roles at Riggs over the past 30 years, as well as my ongoing involvement and leadership in the APA and organized psychiatry.”

The Area 1 Trustee is charged with tending to the best interests of the APA as a representative sent to the Board of Trustees by APA members from Area 1. According to the APA website, the Board of Trustees “determines the priorities, policies, and budgets of the APA.”

Dr. Plakun serves on the APA Assembly Executive Committee, chairs the APA Assembly Committee of Representatives of Subspecialties and Sections, is the founder and leader of the APA Psychotherapy Caucus, and is a Distinguished Life Fellow of the APA. In his home state of Massachusetts, in 2003 Dr. Plakun was named the Outstanding Psychiatrist in Clinical Psychiatry.

In his biopsychosocial advocacy work, Dr. Plakun speaks of the Four Freedoms owed to patients struggling with mental disorders:

  • Freedom from stigma 
  • Freedom from dehumanizing treatment
  • Freedom to pursue meaning in life and in treatment
  • Freedom of choice in access to medically necessary and effective treatment

Riggs Medical Director/CEO Dr. Andrew J. Gerber says of his work, “Eric’s dedication to a biopsychosocial approach to care for those struggling with mental illness has been unwavering throughout his career; his voice is an important one that the field of psychiatry and the APA need.”

To learn more about Dr. Plakun, why he is running for Area 1 Trustee, and what he stands for, please visit his website: www.ericplakun4area1trustee.org.  


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