Insider Scoop

So in a mental hospital there are 4 different units.  We have an adolescent unit, genders separated ( for legal reasons), we have a Geriatric unit ( the elderly) and then we have two adult units, one called the High-Acuity, which is for patients who are in need of more attention, meaning they are psychotic, manic, aggressive, homicidal. This unit also takes any detox patients. We are not a detox facility but we take some from time to time and because they are a higher risk medically they go on this unit. They usually feel SUPER uncomfortable because after all they are not psychotic in any way and most times this is the first time they have ever seen the inside of a psych facility. They usually get really angry that they have to live amongst the other patients and demand to put on another unit. What are these patients detoxing from? You name it, Prescription pills, Heroin, Cocaine, Meth, Alcohol. Anyways, the other unit we have is the Low-Acuity Unit. It houses patients who have suicidal ideation, depression, anxiety, or have just tried to commit suicide. Most suicide attempts are from an attempt of overdosing on prescription meds. This is a large percentage of the people. We do get some that are slitting their neck, hanging, gun to their head and someone caught them. Surprisingly we get a lot of people who say they were planning on driving their car off a cliff, and quite a few people will go sit in traffic hoping to get hit by car. It is very sad to hear all of these things. It is a wonder that every staff member says they don’t read their history from their charts anymore. Almost everyone has a tragic life story and it can be very emotionally draining to read so many tragic stories so often. But at the same time it does help you understand why they have the issues they do now. The Geriatric Unit has elderly people who suffer from Alzheimer’s and Dementia who have been staying at residential living centers and become aggressive, punching and hitting so they send them to us. We even get patients who tried to commit suicide. Once again, most times they attempted to overdose but we also get some who tried to hang themselves. Sad I know…But now you have an idea of what kinds of patients we have in the hospital.

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