Mental Health Telephone Triage: Managing Psychiatric Crisis and Emergency

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PURPOSE:The study aims to identify and articulate how mental health telephone triage (MHTT) clinicians manage psychiatric crisis and emergency via the telephone.DESIGN AND METHODS:An observational design was employed in the study. Wireless headsets were used to observe 197 occasions of MHTT.FINDINGS:Clinicians use a range of practical strategies, therapeutic skills, and psychosocial interventions to manage psychiatric crises and emergencies via the telephone.PRACTICE IMPLICATIONS:The evidence base for managing psychiatric crisis/emergency in MHTT is minimal. These findings contribute to the MHTT knowledge base and provide evidence-based strategies for high-quality emergency mental health care.

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