Psychiatric/psychological consultation is indicated whenever another doctor asks for help with a patient. Consultation requests cover a wide range of topics in a variety of settings.
Most commonly, the consultation request is initiated by a physician from a hospital setting. This routine consultation may actually have life-and-death implications for a patient because the overt cause for referral may reflect a more serious problem. For example, the patient who appears withdrawn may be suicidal; an uncooperative patient with mild agitation may be delirious. Delay in the detection and diagnosis of these disorders may have dire consequences.
Commonly, requests for psychiatric/psychological consultations fall into several general categories:
Evaluation of the mental health of patients with serious medical illness, formulation of their problems and diagnosis, and organization and implementation of an effective treatment plan involve complex clinical skills that require specialized training. In addition to the usual psychiatric/psychological examination, specialized knowledge about diagnosis, medicolegal issues, and psychotherapeutic and psychopharmacological interventions is necessary. The Burrell consulting psychiatrist/psychologist is familiar with the routines of the medical/surgical environment and knowledgeable about medical and surgical illnesses. The psychiatric/psychological consultant is also aware of the effects that illnesses and drugs have on behavior, especially when they contribute to or confound the diagnosis or treatment. Furthermore, the Burrell psychiatric/psychological consultant is supportive of the patient and remains sensitive to the effects of the patient on the staff.
All Burrell providers of psychiatric/psychological consultation in the general medical setting are specifically trained and licensed physicians/psychologists.
|Terry Fithen – Burrell Behavioral Health Main Center
1300 E Bradford Parkway
Springfield, Missouri 65804