Duke Health Provider question
I partner with the patient and the family in trying to keep the patient as safe, happy, and healthy as possible.
– Richard J. O'Brien, MD, PhD

Richard J. O'Brien, MD, PhD

Neurologist

Duke Health Provider question
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Board Certified
American Board of Psychiatry/Neurology, Psychiatry, Neurology
American Board of Internal Med, Internal Medicine
Where I See Patients
Duke Neurological Disorders Clinic at Morreene Road - Durham, NC
I partner with the patient and the family in trying to keep the patient as safe, happy, and healthy as possible.
– Richard J. O'Brien, MD, PhD

My Locations

Use My Current Location to calculate the distance to this facility.
This location is currently 5.5 miles from your current location.

About Me

I see patients with memory disorders, such as Alzheimer’s disease or other forms of dementia. In almost every encounter, I feel like I see two patients: the person with the disease and the person taking care of the person with the disease. The caregiver often needs as much attention as the patient because they are under a lot of stress, so I offer helpful tips, advice, encouragement, and resources. These diseases don’t have cures, so I spend a lot of time talking with caregivers, diagnosing the disease, and helping families cope. There are some medicines we use for these diseases, but their effect is fairly limited, so we also try to treat side effects, such as depression or behavioral problems. It’s a partnership between the doctor, the patient, and the family trying to keep the patient as safe, happy, and healthy as possible. I am also involved in research projects and enjoy both seeing patients and studying their diseases in the lab.

Languages I Speak
English

Call for an Appointment

Ratings and Reviews

The Patient Rating score is an average of all responses to care provider related questions on our nationally-recognized Press Ganey Patient Satisfaction Survey. Learn more about our survey process. Responses are measured on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being the best score.

Overall Provider Rating
4.86 out of 5
91 ratings, 14 reviews

Training and Education

Board Certification
American Board of Psychiatry/Neurology, Psychiatry, Neurology
American Board of Internal Med, Internal Medicine
Fellowship
Neuromuscular Diseases, Johns Hopkins Hospital (Maryland), 1992-1993
Residency
Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital, 1985-1988
Neurology, Johns Hopkins Hospital (Maryland), 1989-1992
Education
MD, Harvard University (Massachusetts), 1985
PhD, Pharmacology, Harvard University (Massachusetts), 1985

Clinical Focus and Research

Publications
View my publications on PubMed

Insurance Accepted

Duke Health contracts with most major health insurance carriers and transplant networks, including the ones listed below.

    • Aetna Choice POS, Aetna Choice POS II
    • Aetna Elect Choice HMO, Aetna Open Access Elect Choice
    • Aetna Health Network Only, Aetna Health Network Option
    • Aetna HMO
    • Aetna Limited Benefit Insurance PPO
    • Aetna Managed Choice POS
    • Aetna Medicare HMO Open Access
    • Aetna Medicare Plan (HMO, PPO)
    • Aetna Medicare Premier Plan (PPO)
    • Aetna Medicare Prime Plan (HMO, PPO)
    • Aetna Open Access HMO, Open Access Aetna Select, Aetna Open Access Managed Choice
    • Aetna Open Choice PPO
    • Aetna PCP Coordinated POS Plan
    • Aetna Quality Point of Service (QPOS)
    • Aetna Select HMO
    • Aetna Traditional Choice
    • Aetna Voluntary Indemnity Group Plan
    • Aetna Whole Health – Duke WakeMed WKCC
    • Ambetter of North Carolina
    • Blue Advantage
    • Blue Medicare (HMO, PPO)*
    • Blue Options (123, PPO, HSA)
    • Blue Select
    • NC State Employees Health Plan
    • *Duke HomeCare and Hospice does not participate in the plan.

    • Cigna Choice Plus
    • Cigna Behavioral Health (*Limited eligibility)
    • Cigna Open Access
    • Cigna Open Access Plus
    • *Please call Cigna Behavioral Heath to see if the provider is participating in your plan.

    • Duke Basic
    • Duke Select
    • Experience Health Medicare Advantage (HMO) Plan
  • First Health
  • Gateway Health Alliance
    • Gateway Health Medicare Assured Prime (HMO)
    • Gateway Health Medicare Assured Select (HMO)
  • Halifax Physician-Hospital Organization
  • Healthgram
    • Humana Choice (PPO)
    • Humana ChoiceCare (PPO)
    • Humana Gold Choice (PFFS)
    • Humana Gold Plus (HMO)
  • MedCost
    • First Medicare Direct*
    • Medicare Part A
    • Medicare Part B
    • *This is for Wake County only.

  • MultiPlan / Private Healthcare Systems
    • NC Medicaid*
    • *Not all Duke locations and doctors participate in this plan. Please contact the location you will be visiting to determine what is accepted.

  • OneNet PPO
    • FAMIS*
    • Optima Family Care (Medicaid HMO in VA)*
    • Optima Individual & Family (On & Off Exchange Plans)
    • Optima Plus (PPO)
    • Optima Vantage (HMO)
    • *Duke Primary Care, Duke University Hospital, Duke Regional Hospital, and Duke Raleigh Hospital are not participating with this plan.

    • TRICARE Prime*
    • TRICARE Prime Remote*
    • TRICARE Select*
    • *Duke Primary Care is considered an authorized, non-network participating provider.

    • AARP Medicare Complete (HMO, PPO)*
    • AARP Medicare Complete Essential (HMO)*
    • All Savers Alternate Funding
    • All Savers Fully Insured
    • State Employee Health Plan (for retirees)
    • United Healthcare (HMO, PPO, POS)
    • United Healthcare Charter/Charter Balance/Charter Plus
    • United Healthcare Choice/Choice Plus
    • United Healthcare Core/Core Essential
    • United Healthcare Navigate/Navigate Plus/Navigate Balanced
    • United Healthcare of the River Valley
    • United Healthcare Option PPO
    • United Healthcare Options PPO with Harvard Pilgrim
    • United Healthcare Passport Connect Choice/Choice Plus
    • United Healthcare Passport Connect Options PPO
    • United Healthcare Select/Select Plus
    • United Medical Resources (UMR)
    • *Duke HomeCare and Hospice does not participate with the plan.

Before scheduling your appointment, we strongly recommend you contact your insurance company to verify that the Duke Health location or provider you plan to visit is included in your network. Your insurance company will also be able to inform you of any co-payments, co–insurances, or deductibles that will be your responsibility. If you proceed in scheduling an appointment and your health insurance benefits do not participate with Duke, your out of pocket liability may be higher. We will contact you regarding your coverage and patient liability. If you are uninsured, learn more about our financial assistance policy.

External Relationships

Duke requires faculty members to report certain relationships outside of their employment in order to ensure potential conflicts can be addressed. This faculty member has reported no outside activities that relate to their Duke responsibilities.