2110 Overland Ave, STE 108, Billings MT 59106


Ph: 406-702-0795

Svetlana Yakov, MD, PhD is a psychiatrist who has a combined background in neurology, psychiatry and medicine. She was trained during her psychiatry residency at one of the biggest NIH clinical research fields on treatment resistant depression at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Since the beginning of her training in 2012, she was managing inpatient unit psychiatric patients who received (as a part of NIH research) in ER Ketamine for their suicidal ideations. She observed the powerful and rapid anti-suicidal effect of Ketamine on her patients. In 2015-2016, Dr Yakov helped to monitor patients who received endonasal s-ketamine (as a part of another NIH clinical trial). Principal investigator of all clinical trials on Ketamine, professor Richard Shelton, MD, PhD, was also clinical and research mentor for Dr. Yakov during her PGY-3 –PGY-4 of psychiatry residency. After successful graduation from residency Dr Yakov worked as Assistant Professor at the same Department of Psychiatry and then in outpatient practice in Alabama and in Montana. 

Since moving to outpatient practice in Billings Clinic in 2020, psychiatrist,  Dr. Yakov has been concerned about high level of Montanans with advanced depression complicated by suicidal behavior and with one of the highest suicidal death rates in USA that our Montana state has.  She provided leadership in the development of Ketamine Clinic in Billings in order to improve access of the most vulnerable (rural patients, veterans) to the best evidence of FDA approved practices. Dr. Yakov opened this Non-profit Ketamine Clinic with a goal to increase access of underserved people due to shortage of psychiatrist’s population to the innovative anti-suicidal outpatient treatment. Increasing access to Ketamine treatment will decrease the number of ER visits, psychiatric admissions and number of disabilities,  and it will increase the quality of life of many people with treatment resistant mental illness. Most importantly, it will save many Montanans’ lives for themselves and their family. Dr Yakov currently research grants and works on involving local organizations, public health to participate and contribute to this initiative. 

Psychiatrist, Dr. Yakov’ s past clinical research interests included movement disorders, Parkinson’s disease, Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS). She defended dissertation on neurological and neuropsychological efficacy of DBS in Parkinson’s disease and received PhD in medical sciences for this project.  As a results, DBS for Parkinson’s disease was implemented in many hospitals of her country. She also published many articles, book chapters, participated in international and USA conferences (2001-2004).

Since she moved to the USA, her  clinical research interests included problems with smell, taste and hormonal changes. During her psychiatry pre-residency training, she volunteered as clinical and research assistant to neuropsychiatrist professor Alan Hirsch at his Smell and Taste Research foundation in Chicago, IL (2009-20011). Dr. Yakov published many psychiatry abstracts and presented posters at USA conferences together with Dr. Hirsch.

During her psychiatry residency (2012-2016) she learned about modern mechanisms of depression (inflammatory, hormonal, metabolic, genetic), modern approach to management of treatment resistant depression including IV ketamine and endonasal s-ketamine. During her last years of residency, she saw her patients with Professor Richard Shelton who was her attending and research mentor. Dr Yakov also had leadership on quality improvement project on improvement of sensory milieu (smell, taste, visual, audio, proprioception stimulation) on  high acuity psychiatric unit. This project allowed statistically significantly decrease violence on this psychiatric unit and decrease number of physical restraints to the patients; this project was awarded 1st place among other projects for safety at the UAB Hospital. The sensory reduction project was “rolled” to other psychiatric units of UAB hospital since it was very successful. Dr Yakov also published a journal article with the results of this study.