Mental Health in the Emergency Department: Evolving Care Models to Meet Patient Needs

Between the lack of inpatient capacity and insufficient community resources, there is a significant impact on the overall crowding conditions of the ED. With nowhere else to go, mental health patients are utilizing the ED for their care needs which negatively effects patients that have an emergency medical condition and emergency department staff, who may not have an appropriate training or care model in place to manage this type of patient.

The emergency department will continue to be a significant receiving area for those who are seeking support for their mental health issues. Ensuring innovative facility, operational and clinical models that cater to the local mental health population are implemented in the ED is integral to the success of managing this growing population.

This white paper examines solutions that support the mental health patient in crisis, design solutions that improve care in an emergency setting for the mental health patient, and innovations on the horizon that improve emergency care of mental health patients.