Published online by Cambridge University Press: 22 July 2021
One out of every twenty emergency department (ED) visits in the United States is due to a psychiatric issue. Providing a gateway between the community and the mental health system, psychiatry emergency clinicians are responsible for assessing and managing a wide array of clinical presentations and conditions. Among emergency mental health-related visits, substance-related disorders, mood disorders, anxiety disorders, psychosis, and suicide attempts are among the most prevalent presentations. Although urgent conditions are common, increasing numbers of patients who present to the emergency department seek treatment for routine or non-acute psychiatric symptoms. Some patients self-refer to the emergency department, while others may be referred by family, friends, outpatient treatment providers, public agencies, or representatives of the law enforcement system.