Last updated on November 2019

A Virtual Navigation Intervention to Reduce Behavioral Health Admissions From Rural Emergency Departments


Brief description of study

This research project is a pragmatic, randomized evaluation of a quality improvement initiative which seeks to evaluate the effects of standardizing the use of a BH-VPN program among patients with a telepsychiatric consult. The outcomes evaluation of this intervention has been designed to integrate with routine care and minimize frontline staff burden by deploying an evaluation in a real-world setting.

Detailed Study Description

Hospital admissions are common amongst those with mental illness. Significant morbidity exists for patients who are being admitted to a psychiatric hospital from the Emergency Department (ED).Additionally, commitment to a hospital setting may have adverse effects on patients psychologically, degrade relationships with therapists, and disrupt continuity of care. ED providers often decide to admit to a psychiatric hospital because of limited availability of behavioral health resources. To better enhance transitions of care for those with mental illness, Atrium Health has designed a behavioral health virtual patient navigation (BH-VPN)program that helps coordinate services and follow-up care, while facilitating the safe discharge of patients. Patients presenting to an ED that have a tele psychiatric consult who are recommended for discharge are eligible for services. The Behavioral health Service line is expanding the program to additional rural emergency departments. Using an outcomes evaluation, the investigators will inform Atrium Health on the effect of the BH-VPN program to reduce hospital admissions among patients with a tele psychiatric consult in the ED. The proposed hypothesis is that by having the BH-VPN program available in an ED, more patients will be discharged from the ED than admitted.

Clinical Study Identifier: NCT04148521

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Columbus Regional Hospital

Whiteville, NC United States
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