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A Mobile Crisis Unit in the Psychiatric Emergency Room
Herbert Bengelsdorf; Diane Craig Alden
Psychiatric Services 1987; doi:
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The authors wish to thank the members of the mobile psychiatric crisis intervention service for their valuable contributions.

Psychiatric Institute at Westchester County Medical Center in Valhalla, New York

New York Medical College, Harlem Valley Psychiatric Center in Wingdale, New York

American Psychiatric Association

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Abstract

A mobile psychiatric crisis intervention service based in the emergency room of a county receiving hospital sends teams into the community to screen and treat patients in crisis. The teams have been able to treat 70 percent of the patients seen in the community without hospitalization. Two-thirds of those hospitalized are admitted to nonpublic community hospitals, thus relieving the load on public institutions. To augment their work with patients, the teams employ a multisystems approach to treatment that attempts to identify and resolve problems not only within the patient's family, but also with the referring therapist and agency, and even with the crisis intervention service itself. The service has ensured its survival by paying close attention to the needs of its sponsoring institutions.

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