Vol. 112 (2021)

A Conversation with Johns Hopkins' Psychiatrist 

Dr. Karen L. Swartz on Kids & COVID




Noted Psychiatrist and Chaired Professor at Johns Hopkins Medicine Karen Swartz visited with Dusty Sang, Publisher of Stay Thirsty Magazine, earlier this year on Clubhouse for Stay Thirsty Presents: Conversations with Fascinating People and focused on the mental health of young people, especially during the COVID pandemic.


Karen Swartz received her B.A. from Princeton and her M.D. from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. She completed her psychiatry residency at Johns Hopkins Hospital, where she served as Chief Resident. She then completed clinical fellowship training in Affective Disorders and research training in Psychiatric Epidemiology at the Johns Hopkins School of Hygiene and Public Health. She is currently Vice Chair for Faculty – Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences; Director of Clinical and Educational Programs – Johns Hopkins Mood Disorders Center; and the Myra S. Meyer Professor in Mood Disorders. Her clinical expertise is in the diagnosis and treatment of mood disorders.  


Dr. Swartz is the co-founder and Director of the Adolescent Depression Awareness Program – ADAP for short – whose mission is to make the ADAP curriculum available nationally for school-based professionals to incorporate into their high school classes. Through this work, ADAP aims to increase awareness and decrease stigma about mood disorders in young people while stressing the need for evaluation and treatment.


Dr. Swartz is famous for saying: "Depression is a treatable medical illness" – which is revolutionary in its simplicity and directness in redefining "mental illness" as a "medical illness" of an organ of the body – the brain – that is, in fact, treatable.

From the ADAP website

Stay Thirsty Magazine was honored to have this opportunity to chat with Dr. Swartz, not only about her work as a psychiatrist and her work with the development of ADAP, but also about her thoughts on kids and how they are coping with the COVID pandemic.


The following is a recording of Dr. Karen Swartz's conversation with Dusty Sang.

A Conversation with Dr. Karen Swartz on Clubhouse


Dr. Karen L. Swartz

Adolescent Depression Awareness Program (ADAP)




All opinions expressed are solely those of its author and do not reflect the opinions of Stay Thirsty Media, Inc.