Specialties and Expertise
- Adult Psychotherapy
- Mood Disorder
- Anxiety Disorder
- Provide Second Opinion
- Psychiatric Aspects of Physical Illness
- Psychopharmacology and Psychotherapy
- Psychodynamic Psychotherapy
Dr. John W. Barnhill is DeWitt Wallace Senior Scholar, Professor of Clinical Psychiatry, and Professor of Medical Ethics at Weill Cornell Medicine.
Dr. Barnhill has maintained a psychodynamically-oriented private practice throughout his career. For 15 years, Dr. Barnhill served as chief and/or departmental vice chair for consultation-liaison psychiatry at New York Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medicine. In addition to performing and supervising psychiatric consults throughout the hospital, Dr. Barnhill has specifically worked with teams from cardiology, dermatology, and rheumatology. For five years, he directed NYP/WCM's mental health services for all of its residents (physicians in training).
Dr. Barnhill's scholarly efforts have focused on the clarification and simplification of psychiatric assessment and treatment. It is a challenge to maintain simplicity when humans are complicated, and to develop clarity when people present with some combination of sadness, anxiety, stress, substance use, burnout, comorbid medical conditions, and patterns of interpersonal conflict. Similarly, it is a challenge to recommend the best treatment in a field with so many competing and overlapping psychotherapeutic, behavioral, and pharmacologic interventions.
Dr. Barnhill's six books include: Approach to the Psychiatric Patient, 2nd edition (2019), a text that includes over 100 authors from Weill Cornell or Columbia; Co-Occurring Mental Illness and Substance Use Disorders: A Guide to Diagnosis and Treatment, edited with Dr. Jonathan Avery (2017); DSM-5 Clinical Cases (2013); and Approach to the Psychiatric Patient (2008). These books have been translated into a total of 12 languages. He also edits the Anxiety, Stress, and Trauma section for the online Merck Manual; in 2019, his chapter received 1.7 million hits. He is currently working on an update to the DSM-5 Casebook that will accompany the revised DSM-5 in 2021.
Dr. Barnhill chairs the psychiatry department's Appointments and Promotions Committee as well as its Committee on Faculty Development. He has served on most of WCM's medical student education committees and on most of the psychiatry department's education and administrative committees. He has been chief of psychiatry at HSS since 2010. He has served on the NYP/WCM Ethics Committee since 2001. He has chaired the WCM General Faculty Council (the representative body for all WCM faculty) and the Payne Whitney Faculty Council (which represents all of the psychiatry faculty).
Outside of NYP/WCM, Dr. Barnhill chairs the Ethics Committee for the Psychoanalytic Center at Columbia University, where he teaches the Ethics course to advanced candidates. Between 2013 and 2019, Dr. Barnhill served on the editorial board for books published by the the American Psychiatric Association.
Since 2015, Dr. Barnhill has directed the psychiatry section of the annual Salzburg Weill Cornell Seminars, which are focused on the continuing education of young psychiatrists from developing countries, particularly in Eastern Europe. He has served on the WCM Faculty Committee for the Weill Bugando Medical College in Mwanza, Tanzania and on the International Psychoanalytic Association's and the American Psychiatric Association's Committees to the United Nations and on the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women.
Dr. Barnhill has lectured or consulted throughout the country, as well as the Middle East, Africa, Europe, and Asia.
Honors and Awards
Honors and Awards
Dr. Barnhill graduated magna cum laude from Duke University and received his medical degree from Baylor College of Medicine, where he won the Alumni Award for Service.
He is a Distinguished Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association, a Fellow of the Academy of Consultation-Liaison Psychiatry, and an elected member of the American College of Psychiatrists.
2018 Miriam G. Wallach Award for Excellence in Humanistic Medical Care, NYP/WCM
2016 Edith Sabshin Award for Teaching, American Psychoanalytic Association
2012 Nancy C.A. Roeske Certificate in Medical Student Education, American Psychiatric Association
2009 Award for Excellence in Medical Student Teaching, WCM
2008 John F. O'Connor Award for Medical Student Teaching, Columbia Psychoanalytic Center
2005 Award for Excellence in Medical Student Teaching, WCM
2003 Best Full Time Faculty Teacher, NYP/WCM Psychiatry Residents
- Psychosomatic Medicine
Clinical and Academic Positions
- Attending Psychiatrist - NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital
- Professor of Medical Ethics in Clinical Medicine - Weill Cornell Medical College, Cornell University
- DeWitt Wallace Senior Scholar - Weill Cornell Medical College, Cornell University
- Professor of Clinical Psychiatry - Weill Cornell Medical College, Cornell University
Education and Training
- M.D., Baylor College of Medicine, 1985
Insurance Plans Accepted
The following represents most of the managed care plans accepted by this physician. If your insurance carrier does not appear here please contact the physician’s office as they may have individual contracts not included on this site.
* indicates this physician is no longer accepting new patients with this insurance plan.
- Aetna - Weill Cornell - POS
- Rockefeller University - Trustmark