Joint SAMHSA AHRQ Study Reveals that the Vast Majority of Psychiatric Treatment in Community Hospitals Occurs in Specialty Units

Over 90 percent of psychiatric patients who received treatment in community hospitals were cared for in hospital-based psychiatric specialty units, according to a study sponsored by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and the U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) and published today in Psychiatric Services.

The study investigated the extent to which community hospitals treated patients with psychiatric disorders in specialty psychiatric units versus general medical beds (sometimes known as “scatter beds”). The study focused on community hospitals and did not examine care in free standing psychiatric hospitals or other settings.

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