Acute Psychiatry

CEP America Acute Psychiatry addresses the critical need for psychiatric care in EDs. In 2007, one in eight United States ED visits were due to either a psychiatric emergency, a substance use disorder or both. These mental health patients are often boarded in the ED between 8 and 34 hours while waiting for psychiatric care or clearance from a psychiatrist.
We work with health systems and counties to co-design and develop customized programs to improve care for psychiatric patients while improving the operational and financial performance of an ED.

Outpatient Care Models to Meet Your Hospital’s Needs

Our emergency psychiatry program provides prompt evaluation and intensive treatment with the goal of rapid stabilization. The maximum length of stay is 24 hours. Discharge planning and case management ensure a smooth transition home or to another care setting.
We work with each client to construct an emergency psychiatry model that meets the needs and regulations of the hospital, county and state. Our models are:
  • Regionally Dedicated Psychiatric Emergency Services (PES): provides 24/7 psychiatric coverage and meets EMTALA guidelines.
  • Crisis Stabilization Unit (CSU): Provides timely psychiatric care, but does not meet EMTALA guidelines, and may be more cost-effective for lower census settings.
  • Hybrid Model with Telepsychiatry: Uses telepsychiatry to support either a PES or CSU to augment in-house psychiatric coverage during saturation and/or surge, after hours, and weekends.
In addition to these outpatient care models, we offer telepsychiatry solutions to hospital emergency departments. The service connects patients with psychiatric professionals for on-demand assessments and recommendations on treatment and disposition via video teleconferencing. Our telepsychiatry solutions can help reduce ED crowding and delays in care while improving access and timeliness for psychiatric interventions.

Improving Financial and Operational Performance

Providing timely psychiatric treatment improves patient care and reduces boarding, which costs hospitals an average of $2,264 per patient. Reducing boarding allows those ED beds and staff to be re-allocated and enables hospitals to care for more patients with medical emergencies. This improves quality of care and patient satisfaction for all patients.


An Emergency Medicine-Focused Approach

Our focus is on the partnership between emergency psychiatry and emergency medicine to provide the right level of care promptly at the right setting. Led by Scott Zeller, M.D., one of the nation’s leading experts in psychiatric emergency medicine, our medical assessment-focused approach results in seamless continuity of care for patients with psychiatric emergencies.