IMHPAC: Adult Inpatient Sub Committee Minutes October 25, 2021


Meeting of the Adult Inpatient Sub Committee

October 25, 2021

  1. Approval of minutes from last meeting.
  2. Attendees:
    • Dennis Hopkins
    • Shirley Davis
    • Mike Davis
    • Sidney Weissman
  3. Question of interest in filling the vacant subcommittee co-chair position: interest expressed by Shirley Davis.
  4. Discussion: The topic again is the availability of mental health beds in the community. In an attempt to make available mental health beds known to providers, it is necessary to make bed availability known to providers (i.e., hospital emergency rooms, crisis care workers, etc.).
    • With the establishment of 988, it is imperative for reliable listings of mental health bed availability throughout the state be readily accessible. In using medical bed availably as a comparative measure, it is necessary to have some understanding of the quality and type of services provided at each inpatient facility. For instance, when a patient comes to an ER with a cancer diagnosis, many hospitals may merely stabilize the patient and refer to patient's physician. The patient does not need to be transported to facility where the patient is receiving cancer chemotherapy. However, if a patient comes into an ER demonstrating symptoms of an aneurism, the ER staff needs to know the closest hospital handling such issues so transfer usually by helicopter will take place immediately.
    • One major issue for inpatient mental health providers is staffing patterns. Can the inpatient unit handle the severity of the client's symptomatology? That is, does the client need protection and medications, or just a quiet and safe place to be for a few days? However, all available beds cannot be of the latter type. When a crisis arises in the community, it is imperative for an existing bed be available to meet the needs of the client in the ER.
    • Honesty in reporting bed availability is a necessity. But compliance with hospital directors is variable. Being knowledgeable of an upcoming bed may be reported with honesty so the hospital is not picking and choosing who to admit. Or the vacancy may not be revealed until the extent of the patient severity is known. And, what consequences does the facility experience if refusing to take someone occurs with fatal consequences?