Emergency Psychiatry

Clerkship Number: 409-091

Location: Hartford Hospital Psychiatry Section, Emergency Department

Clerkship Director: Adrienne Bentman, MD

Duration: One month

Months Offered: All months except July

# of Students: Maximum of one

Prerequisite: Third Year Curriculum

Contact Info:
David Pepper, MD
Director, Psychiatry Section, Emergency Department
Tel: 860.545.2629
Fax: 860.545.4723
Email: David.Pepper@hhchealth.org

Description of Clerkship

This elective is designed to provide advanced training in the psychiatric care of seriously ill patients in Hartford’s busiest emergency department. The elective is a valuable adjunct to the CORE requirements for those students interested in or curious about pursuing a career in psychiatry. The rotation is also appropriate for those interested in pursuing alternate fields including emergency medicine and those who desire advanced education in the evaluation and management of severely disturbed patients in an emergency setting.


The student is responsible, under the supervision of the Director of Emergency Psychiatry and their designees, for the evaluation, management and disposition of patients referred to the psychiatric section of the Hartford Hospital Emergency Department. The responsibilities of the student include the initial psychiatric evaluation, confirmation of the medical diagnosis, pharmacologic and behavioral management, and disposition planning. The student evaluates between 3-6 patients during a typical 8 hour shift. No night call is required.


  • To gain experience in rapid psychiatric assessment.
  • To solidify one’s knowledge base in the use of, side effects of, complications seen with, and toxicity of psychotropic medication.
  • To develop the ability to recognize intoxication and withdrawal states of lici and illicit drugs.
  • To learn the initial phase of early crisis treatment.


The student functions in the role of primary psychiatric treater assessing patients in the psychiatric section of the Emergency Department at Hartford Hospital. Daily supervision is provided by the Medical Director of the Psychiatric Emergency Department. More structured educational experiences include weekly Psychiatry Grand Rounds and the weekly Emergency Psychiatry/Consultation Liaison Seminar.

Patient Population

The psychiatric section of the Hartford Hospital Emergency Department cares for 6,400 patients per year. The population ranges in age from 18 to geriatric and patients hail from a wide range of socioeconomic, ethnic, and cultural backgrounds.

Evaluation Process

The student is evaluated directly by the Director of the Psychiatric Emergency Division with mid-point feedback on progress and a final verbal and written evaluation upon conclusion of the rotation.


Interested students should contact:

Adrienne Bentman, MD
860.545.7183 (phone)
860.545.7403 (fax)


David Pepper, MD
860.545.2629 (phone)
860.545.4273 (fax)

Revised 02/14/13