PIRC-What to Expect in the Emergency Room


  • Registration staff will ask for the reason you have come to the ER, as well as, other basic information.
  • A Nurse will assess the patient’s needs and urgency of treatment.

Treatment Room

  • The patient and caregiver will move to a secured and safe treatment room in the ER.
  • A Clinical Associate (CA) will remove all patient belongings and place in a locker for safety.
  • The patient is placed in paper scrubs and scanned for safety reasons.
  • At least one family member or caregiver is required to stay with the patient at all times.
  • No one is allowed to have electronics or personal items in the room for safety reasons. Phones are available for loved ones to use.
  • A Nurse and/or a CA will check vital signs and the Nurse may administer medication, as needed.

Medical Exam

  • The patient will be assessed by an Attending ER Physician and determined if medically stable.
  • If cleared medically, the patient is seen by the Mental Health Team.

Psychiatric Exam

  • An intake assessment will be conducted by a Licensed Clinical Social Worker or Licensed Professional Counselor, Nurse Practitioner, or Fellow doctor all under the supervision of the Attending Psychiatrist. The assessment includes reasons for the ER visit, a history of mental health issues past or present, past or presents treatments, family history, and a mental status exam.
  • An evaluation will be conducted by the Attending Psychiatrist, which includes a review of the history and physical exam.

Treatment Plan/Admission or Transfer/Discharge from ER

The Mental Health Team will consult with the Attending Psychiatrist, Attending Physician, and family and/or caregiver to determine the best treatment for the patient. If your child or teen is admitted for inpatient stabilization, a team member will facilitate admission or transfer to the hospital. If your child or teen is discharged from the ER, a team member will refer you back to your mental health provider or give you a list of outpatient providers for follow up.