Michael Fitzgerald was the Henry Marsh Professor of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at Trinity College, Dublin. He was the first Professor of Child Psychiatry in Ireland in 1996. A Clinical and Research Consultant to the Irish Society for Autism and an Honorary member of the Northern Ireland Institute of Human Relations. He has a doctorate in the area of autism and has been a researcher in this area since 1973. He trained at St. Patrick’s Hospital Dublin, Chicago Medical School, and The Maudsley Hospital and the National Hospital for Nervous Diseases in London. He has clinically diagnosed over 2600 individuals with Autism and Asperger’s syndrome and has served on the Government Task Force on Autism and the family as well as similar task forces for the Department of Health in Northern Ireland. He has contributed to National and International Journals on autism another relevant topics. He has written, co –written, edited or co-edited 25 books.
Michael undertook his internship at the Chicago Medical School U.S.A. in 1970 and worked as a junior doctor at St. Patrick’s Hospital Dublin from 1972 onwards. Then he worked at the Bethlem Royal and Maudsley Hospital London and the National Hospital for Nervous Diseases, Queen’s Square, London from 1975 to 1978. Then in 1979 he was a senior registrar in Psychiatry at King’s College Hospital, London and the Hospital for Sick Childrens Group in London. He has been a consultant psychiatrist for the National Children’s Hospital Dublin (and later incorporated into the Adelaide and Meath Hospital), Our Lady’s Hospital for Sick Children Dublin, and the South Western Area Health Board in Dublin. He received an M.B. from the University College Galway and an M.D. from T.C.D. He is a member of the the Royal College of Surgeons in England.
He became an associate member of the British Psychoanalytic Society and the International Psychoanalytic Association in 1980 and was the first to practice here with this recognition. He is a member of the British Institute of Psychoanalysis.
He initiated the first Masters programme in Adult Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy in the 1980’s. In the 1990’s he developed with Dr. Mary Smith a Masters programme in Child and Adolescent Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy at Trinity College Dublin and with Nessa Childers, Ross Skelton, Ann Murphy and others a Masters programme in Adult Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy at Trinity College Dublin. He founded the Journal the Irish Forum for Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy and the Irish Journal for Child Psychotherapy. He founded the Irish Standing Conference on Psychotherapy. He has been a tutor in Psychotherapy Queens University Belfast. He has supervised staff in training in psychotherapy at St. Ita’s Hospital, St. Loman’s Hospital, Artane Day Centre, Vergemount Hospital and St. Patrick’s Hospital Dublin.
He had a long period of experience to an Inpatient Unit for child and adolescent psychiatric problems as well as Autism and Learning Disability in Dublin. He also consults to two Mental Health Organisations and previously consulted to another health organisation for over 25 years. He also consulted to two Paediatric Hospitals in Dublin. He is on the Editorial Advisory Board of the European Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Journal, Journal of the Irish Psychiatric Association, the Irish Journal of Psychological Medicine and the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders. He is a past chairman of the Child Psychiatry Section and Psychotherapy Section of the Irish Division Royal College of Psychiatrists. He has been a member of the Royal College of Psychiatrists in London Psychotherapy Section, Psychotherapy Training (PTSAC) Committee, Learning Disability Executive and Child Psychiatry Executive of the Royal College of Psychiatrists and is currently a member of the academic faculty executive of the Royal college of Psychiatrists in London. He was also a founding member of the European Association of Psychotherapy (EAP) in Holland. He was involved in the early stages with the development of the European Federation of Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy.
He has worked in the field of autism since 1973. His other special interest is Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. He is a member of the Royal College of Surgeons in England.
He is a fellow of the Royal College of Psychiatrists in London. He is an honorary member of the Northern Ireland Association for the study of Psychoanalysis. He is also an honorary foundation member of the Northern Ireland Institute of Human Relations. He was appointed to the Government Commission on the Family and also the Eastern Regional Health Authority Review Group on Autism as well as the Department of Education and Science Task Force on Autism. He is a life member of the Irish Byron Society. He has been a director of the Gheel Autism Services (for persons with autism), chairperson of the Irish Association of Suicidology and Panda Foundation in Clare. He has published contributions to the literature including books, peer reviewed papers, abstracts and letters to the editor of Peer Reviewed Journals. He has written, co-written, edited or co-edited 25 books. He has been involved in research collaborations in 18 countries. He has been chairman of the Board of Management of two Schools for children with autism Ballyowen Meadows and Setanta for over 21 years. He has contributed to the media on over 250 occasions and presented six programmes on adolescence for RTE TV. He was a judge at the Aer Lingus Young Scientists and later the ESAT exhibition. His book “Autism and Creativity – Is There a Link Between Autism in Men and Exceptional Ability”, Brunner Routledge Hove (2004) was described as the best book on Autism by Simon Baron-Cohen in Cambridge and as a ‘must read’ by nature. He has been an External Examiner at the University of London, Queens University Belfast and University College Dublin. He is on the (Adult) Psychiatry Specialist Medical Register and Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Specialist Medical Register of the Irish Medical Council.
He has been involved in research collaborations with Mount Sinai Hospital New York, Institute of Psychiatry London, Universities of Birmingham, Manchester, and Wales College of Medicine etc.
He was the first Psychoanalyst recognised by the International Psychoanalytic Association founded by Sigmund Freud to work in the Republic of Ireland.