This is an everyday issue for us here in the Bronx as well. We have an excellent child and
adolescent crisis team, but there is only so much they can do. Many of our patients need
hospitalization, but the number of peds psych beds is limited, and always gets worse around this
time of year. We are trying to find space in our hospital for these kids to be watched, but space
and staffing are limited. We have had a child in our ED for the past 3 days who has no insurance,
and there are no city hospital beds available. I'm sorry I don't have any advice to offer, but
know that you are not alone. I'll be interested in seeing any solutions posted here.
Peter Zang, MD
"[log in to unmask]" wrote:
> ------- Forwarded message follows -------
> From: [log in to unmask]
> Date sent: Mon, 15 May 2000 15:16:54 EDT
> Subject: Pediatric psychiatric pt in the ER
> To: [log in to unmask], [log in to unmask]
> Hello. I am an admin supervisor of a 400+bed level 2 hosp on the
> southcoast of Mass. We seem to have had an influx of pedi psych cases
> in our busy ER (70,000+ visists per yr). We've had children age 5-14
> waiting 24-36 hrs for a pedi psych in-pt bed at another facility. We
> have an adult locked psych unit but are not licensed for under 16 yrs
> old. These kids have created an unique problem for our ER staff. We
> need to keep them safe but we are not set up to hold pts for days to
> await placement. You can imagine a holiday weekend waiting for a
> pedi psych bed to open. What a nightmare. We are being told by the
> Crisis Center and Pysch Triage that there are so few pedi/adol beds
> in our area.
> Are other parts of the country seeing the same influx?? How are they
> handling it in their ER's. Do you have any suggestions??? These kids
> present with violent behaviors, suicidal plans with serious attempts.
> Unlike their adult counterparts, they don't have alcohol or
> polysubstance related attempts. These kids seem to have straight
> forward psychiatric problems. Thanks for any input.
> Jan DeValles, RN, CEN, BA 1 Hedge ST Fairhaven, Ma 02719 Admin
> Supervisor Southcoast Hosp Groups 101 Page St New Bedford, Ma 02740 -
> [log in to unmask]
> ------ End of forwarded message -------
> Isabelle Melese-d'Hospital, Ph.D.
> Research Specialist
> Emergency Medical Services for Children National Resource Center
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> phone: (301) 650-8059 fax: (301) 650-8045
> email: [log in to unmask] website: www.ems-c.org
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