As behavioural health disorders become more prevalent, the number of patients presenting to the ED with one or more behavioural health conditions is increasing. The increase in patients with behavioural health conditions is a challenge for EDs because organisations do not always have the right resources or staff to meet their care needs—often resulting in longer ED or inpatient stays. In turn, delayed behavioural health treatment in the ED impacts overall patient care quality and health care experience.
One way to ensure emergency departments have the resources and staffing to provide care to behavioural health patients is through telepsychiatry. By offering telepsychiatry in the ED, organisations can provide more services to behavioural health patients without clinicians on site. In this publication, we detail how Oxford Health National Health Services (NHS) Trust in Oxford, UK successfully embedded telepsychiatry in their ED and improved both clinical and experience patient outcomes.