Mental Health ED Helps Thousands
Every year thousands come to the BryanLGH Mental Health ED, seeking a safe haven from personal chaos.
David Miers, PhD, says the Mental Health ED at BryanLGH West is a valuable starting point to successful treatment.
This program - housed in the emergency department at BryanLGH West and coordinated by mental health services - provides emergency care for all ages, as well as crisis assessment for deciding if hospitalization is needed.
It's available every day, around the clock, at 2300 S. 16th St. A mental health nurse assesses each patient, then consults with an emergency room physician and an on-call psychiatrist to plan the next step. During a typical month, they have more than 500 visits.
"This is a component of the emergency department, although we provide care for everyone presenting to the hospital with possible mental health needs," explained Larry Widman, MD, medical director for adult mental health and the Independence Center at BryanLGH. "In the Mental Health ED we determine the level of evaluation needed, and our goal is to triage each person to determine if they should be hospitalized."
Dr. Widman and four other psychiatric hospitalists from the BryanLGH Heartland Psychiatry group join local psychiatrists in providing follow-up help for those admitted as inpatients.
BryanLGH has provided a full range of mental health services in Lincoln for more than 70 years, and manager David Miers, PhD, says the Mental Health ED and related programs for emergency and trauma patients are examples of BryanLGH's commitment to continuing this legacy.
"Our staff is very active in suicide prevention issues, and we also worked with our Trauma Center team to develop a screening tool to detect post traumatic stress," Dr. Miers added.
"Trauma medical director Dr. Reginald Burton was instrumental in helping us get this started. Patients go to our specialty clinic for screening and then could be referred to the Counseling Center. It's all part of the larger picture of patient care at BryanLGH."
Dr. Miers notes that mental health issues touch every area of a medical center, from trauma to heart patients and women's and children's health.
That means practically any patient might someday need the Mental Health ED.
"These hospital-based programs are so important because they add to the full array of care offered at BryanLGH," he said.
For more information about mental health services, please call the Counseling Center at (402) 481-5991.