Consultation-Liaison Psychiatry

You will acquire a comprehensive understanding of the psychiatric consultation process through observation, supervision and didactic activities.

Through this rotation, you will deepen your understanding of how psychiatry functions in context with other medical specialties. You will learn how psychological functioning, medical illness and treatment affect one another. You will develop skills to recognize medically induced psychiatric symptoms, manage them and gauge when to call for assistance.

Common disorders you may see on this service include medical and surgical disorders, adjustment disorders, delirium, dementia, substance use disorders, major depression, bipolar disorder and schizophrenia.

Integrated daily bedside teaching and classroom sessions, including lectures and discussions, help you learn your roles and responsibilities when consulting on general medical inpatient cases at the request of treating physicians. You will meet with the supervising faculty member for daily rounds and be supervised on all cases.

Your duties will include:

  • obtaining relevant psychiatric history from patients, family members, medical staff and representatives of social agencies
  • performing mental status examinations, including cognitive and neurological testing
  • assessing suicide risk and other safety issues
  • incorporating knowledge of medicine and neurology into psychiatric assessments
  • formulating biopsychosocial treatment plans
  • interfacing effectively with general hospital inpatient services, nursing staff and discharge planners
  • organizing and teaching non-psychiatric personnel to deliver appropriate interventions when necessary

You will work with a variety of treatment modalities, including psychopharmacology, crisis intervention, behavior therapy in medical patients, electroconvulsive therapy, and alternative therapeutic approaches for dying patients and patients with acute and chronic pain.

In addition, this rotation gives you in-depth exposure to relevant legal aspects of caring for patients in the consultation-liaison setting. At Erie County Medical Center, you will get experience with the intricacies of transplant psychiatry.

Year Taken

PGY-2 or PGY-4

Length of Rotation

Two to three months


You will perform three to seven consults per day on average.

Common diagnoses include delirium, dementia, mood disorders, anxiety disorders, substance use disorders and somatoform disorders.

Clinical Sites