Under the leadership of Dr. Igor Galynker, M.D., Ph.D., The Richard and Cynthia Zirinsky Center for Bipolar Disorder is a unique partnership of mental health professionals who are deeply committed to providing family-oriented care to individuals with bipolar illness and their loved ones. Our dynamic team of Bipolar Specialists works together to provide tailored treatment that fits the unique and individual needs of each one of our clients.
Igor Galynker, MD, PhD., Director
I cannot imagine my life without seeing patients and without helping them and their families. I also enjoy doing research and teaching, I write scientific papers and books, and I talk to media; but it is my clinical work that gives my life its meaning. Over the course of my career, I have probably evaluated and treated 30,000 people, and yet all patients that I see are unique and fascinating, and every family is fascinating and different. Being a family psychiatrist is a privilege I want to keep.
Dr. Galynker is Associate Chairman of Psychiatry, Director of Richard and Cynthia Zirinsky Center for Bipolar Disorder and Director of Suicide Research Laboratory at Mount Sinai Beth Israel Hospital. He specializes in Affective Disorders and in suicide risk assessment and suicide prevention. Dr. Galynker was Board Certified by the American Board of Psychiatry & Neurology, Psychiatry in 1993 and attended Medical School at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine. He completed his residency training in psychiatry at Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York City and is a Professor of Psychiatry at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. Dr. Galynker is the author of the richly acclaimed books Talking to Families About Mental Illness: What Clinicians Need to Know and The Suicidal Crisis. Clinical Guide to the Assessment of Imminent Suicide Risk.
Gaiane Kazariants, Ph.D
Here at the Zirinsky Bipolar Center, I am excited about having an opportunity to offer my patients the most progressive, transformation-driven, and strength-oriented forms of psychotherapy. The ones that allow people to tap into their true nature and connect with their potential for happiness and emotional wellness. I fight for my patients, and because of my international background and broad clinical experience, no issue or circumstance is too dire for me. My expertise and focus lie equally in treating individuals, couples, and families. In my work, time after time I find myself moved and inspired watching the transformative power of healed relationships and revived love bonds. Working together we will tailor your treatment to your unique individual needs, build on your strengths, and make sure you are happy with the direction your life is heading.
Dr. Kazariants is a Clinical Psychologist with expertise in individual, couples’, and family therapy. Her therapeutic strategies are rooted in the latest advances in Experiential Psychodynamic Therapies such as Emotionally Focused Therapy (https://iceeft.com/ and https://nyceft.org/), Accelerated Experiential Dynamic Psychotherapy (https://aedpinstitute.org/) and Brief Relational Therapy. She has a broad range of clinical experiences working with issues like Bipolar Disorder, anxiety, relationship problems, identity issues, and life transitions. Dr. Kazariants is a strong believer in the power of Couples’ and Family Therapy to repair and revive relationships and restore each family member’s potential for growth and love. As an Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at Icahn School of Medicine and a faculty at Mount Sinai Beth Israel she is directly involved in training of psychology externs and interns, and psychiatry residents in the areas of psychotherapy and psychiatric assessment. In addition to Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology she holds MA in Literature and Linguistics from St.Petersburg University in Russia and MA in Behavioral Science from Stockholm University.
To learn more visit https://dr-gaianekazariants.com.
Konstantin Nikiforov, MD
My immediate goal is to achieve a substantial symptom relief with a contingent treatment plan as soon as possible. My style is supportive, friendly and respectful of the patient’s wishes. I am proactive about utilizing various treatment modalities. I will help you to develop the right treatment and to feel well again.
Dr. Nikiforov is an Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. Dr. Nikiforov was Board Certified by the American Board of Psychiatry & Neurology, Psychiatry in 2005 and Geriatric Psychiatry in 2008. He graduated Pirogov’s Russian National Research Medical University in Moscow. His residency training in psychiatry was at Mount Sinai Beth Israel Medical Center in New York City. He further advanced his training during a fellowship in geriatric psychiatry at the same institution. Dr. Nikiforov held a position teaching and supervising mental health professionals as a Chief of Inpatient Unit and a Director of ECT Program at Mount Sinai St. Luke’s Medical Center. He also had an extensive experience of working in Consultation Liaison, Geriatric, Emergency and Outpatient Psychiatry. He prides himself as a hands-on caring clinician with experience working with a broad spectrum of psychiatric conditions in various
Shira Barzilay, PhD
Every person has a unique voice, life experience, approach to the world and understanding of what is troubling him on one hand and what is or may be helpful to him on the other hand. I see my role as to use my wide professional knowledge and experience to carefully listen to all these and work together with the patient to tailor the unique set of methods and pathways towards change, relief and well-being.
Dr Barzilay is a clinical and research postdoctoral fellow at Zirinsky Center for Bipolar Disorders and Suicide Research Laboratory at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. She specializes in mood disorders, self-harm behaviors and in suicide assessment and prevention.
Dr Barzilay was board certified by the Israel Ministry of Health as a clinical psychologist. She holds a PhD in clinical psychology from Bar Ilan University, 2014. She practiced with a variety of patient populations including adult, children and adolescents in outpatient and inpatient settings. Her therapeutic orientation integrates deep psychodynamic understanding of mental life with evidence-based, goal oriented contemporary approaches. Dr Barzilay specializes with issues and challenges related with adolescence and young adulthood, as well as their family members. She has authored multiple journal papers and book chapters in the field of suicide research and self-harm behaviors, and presented her work in international professional conferences.
Raffaella Calati, PhD
"I am fortunate to have I deep passion and love for what I do in all its forms. Whether it be the clinical work with patients, theoretical reflection, writing, collaboration with colleagues. And I am grateful to your country because it allows me to continue doing it".
Dr. Raffaella Calati is currently post doc fellow at Beth Israel Medical Center.Her main focus are mood and personality disorders and suicide prevention.She is a psychologist and a psychoanalytic psychotherapist. She obtained her Ph.D. in Human Psychobiology in 2009, in Italy. She has an extensive international experience, with multiple collaborations and with a long experience (3 years and half) in France. She is author of more than 100 scientific papers published in peer-reviewed journals (h-index: 25 according to Scopus) and reviewer for more than 50 international journals.
Sarah Bloch-Elkouby, PhD
Understanding the human mind and using my knowledge and clinical skills to help people have always been my passion. Throughout the years I have been trained in a variety of clinical orientations that allow me to tailor my work to my patients’ needs and preferences in a fully transparent way. My work with patients also brings up many questions about human functioning and change that I investigate in my research. In return, my research provides me with insights into the therapeutic process that make my clinical work more effective.
Dr. Bloch-Elkouby is a post-doctoral psychology fellow at the Richard and Cynthia Zirinsky Center for Bipolar Disorder and the Brief Psychotherapy Research program at Mount Sinai Beth Israel Hospital. She turned to psychology as a second career after a degree in law. She holds a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from Adelphi University where she was mentored by J. Christopher Muran, an internationally renowned psychotherapy researcher. She completed her doctoral internship at Mount Sinai Beth Israel Hospital where she has been an active member of the Brief Psychotherapy Research Program since 2012. Her doctoral research focused on the evaluation of psychotherapy outcome and treatment failure and yielded several convention papers and peer-reviewed papers currently under review. Dr. Bloch-Elkouby’s clinical work and research are intertwined and enrich each other. Her clinical orientation follows a flexible mindset that integrates several evidence-based treatment approaches. She presented her clinical work at international conferences and in a peer-reviewed article published in the Journal of Psychotherapy Integration. Dr. Bloch-Elkouby is the proud mother of three children whose love is a continual source of inspiration.
Irina Kopeykina is the Clinical Research Manager at the Zirinsky Center for Bipolar. She oversees the day-to-day administrative functioning of the Family Center, as well as its numerous research projects and volunteers. Irina holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from the College of Staten Island.
Krystel Assounga is the Program Co-ordinator at the Zirinsky Center for Bipolar. Krystel manages all the evaluation and appointment scheduling as well as the medical billing for the Zirinsky Center. Krystel holds a Masters’ degree in Clinical Psychology from the University of Cape Town, South Africa.
Volunteers The Zirinsky Center offers a unique and multi-faceted education opportunity for both undergraduate and graduate volunteers. Our volunteers take a leadership role in many of our ongoing research projects, attend classes and lectures that take place in the Department of Psychiatry, and receive real-life experience of working in the rich and rewarding field of mental health.
For those interested in volunteering in the Zirinsky Center, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.