Urgent Psychiatric Consult

This service is available to children up to age 17 with urgent mental health concerns who would benefit from a one-time psychiatric evaluation. Examples of concerns addressed by urgent psychiatric consultations include diagnostic or treatment issues pertaining to early psychosis, severe depression or anxiety, suicidal ideation or deterioration in a child's functioning. Problems related to significant family conflict are usually not within the scope of the urgent consultation.

Services include:

  • Psychiatric consult and assessment.
  • Recommendations for the referring physician or mental health professional.
  • Average length of a consult is three hours.

While ongoing psychiatric management is not provided after the psychiatric assessment, children, youth and families may be:

  • Discharged back to the family doctor/pediatrician with recommendations.
  • Referred to a community agency (i.e. MCFD's Child & Youth Mental Health, Project Alive, Youth and Family Substance Use Services, etc.) 
  • In rare cases, immediate admission to hospital may be indicated.

Locations Served:

South Island: The Urgent Psychiatric Consult serves southern Vancouver Island as far as Sooke/Port Renfrew, the South Malahat, Sidney, and the Gulf Islands.   


Family Physicians, pediatricians and mental health clinicians can make referrals by contacting the mental health crisis nurse at 250-727-4212, who will screen, triage and, on occasion, re-direct referrals to a more appropriate resources.

Consults are only accepted for children and youth living within the Capital Regional District and the Gulf Islands. Priority is given to those with no previous psychiatric involvement.

This service is available by appointment only.

This service is not able to provide or assume on-going care responsibilities from other clinicians, nor can it provide clinical follow up in this or any other setting.

This service is physically located in the Child, Youth and Family Ambulatory Clinic (CFAU) at VGH or the Anscomb Program at the Queen Alexandra Centre for Children's Health.