- •Mental health–related emergency department (ED) presentations are a growing clinical challenge.
- •EDs must be better resourced to meet this burgeoning need.
- •A nurse practitioner–led mental health liaison team has multiple benefits for patients and ED and psychiatry staff.
- •Based on 5 key principles, this model of care is transferable to a range of emergency contexts.
Responding to the growing number of people presenting to emergency departments (EDs) with mental health, substance use, and behavioral concerns is a significant clinical challenge. Traditionally, EDs have relied on segregated and in-reach models, usually funded by mental health services and focused primarily on providing EDs with “mental health assessments.” This is no longer adequate for facilitating prompt therapeutic care, reducing ED length of stay, and supporting ED staff. This brief report summarizes key findings from a multisite study conducted in New South Wales, Australia, implementing and evaluating a nurse practitioner–led mental health liaison nurse service based in the ED.
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Timothy Wand, PhD, NP is an associate professor and nurse practitioner in mental health at the Emergency Department, Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, and the Susan Wakil School of Nursing and Midwifery, Faculty of Medicine and Health, University of Sydney, Camperdown, New South Wales, Australia. Dr. Wand can be contacted at [email protected]
Published online: February 24, 2023
Funding: This work was funded by a translational research grant from the New South Wales Office of Health and Medical Research. In compliance with standard ethical guidelines, the author reports no relationships with business or industry that would pose a conflict of interest.
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