Psychiatric Emergency Services

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Nanaimo Regional General Hospital PES in Nanaimo

PES is accessible 24 hours/day, 7 days/week to provide specialized emergency psychiatric and substance use care to adults experiencing emergent mental health and substance use-related crises, in alignment with legislative requirements of the Mental Health Act. 

Types of Services Offered

  • Thorough and rapid specialized assessment, crisis management, and initiation of treatment for mental health and substance use-related crises
  • Diagnosis, support and education, and crisis intervention:
    • De-escalation and symptom management
    • Medication initiation
    • Recovery planning
    • Review of individuals’ existing resources/support networks in the community
  • Substance-use screening, risk assessment, and determination of the most appropriate intervention including harm reduction services
  • Referrals to the most appropriate level of care, including inpatient admission or referral to outpatient services and community resources
  • Safety and discharge planning

Eligibility Criteria 

  • No referral is necessary to come to the Nanaimo Regional General Hospital; transfers to PES are determined by the Emergency Room Physician following assessment 
  • Adults 17 years or older experiencing emergent mental health and/or substance use-related crises

How to Access 

  1. Go to Nanaimo Regional General Hospital
  2. Speak to the Emergency Triage nurse who will assess current emergency health needs
  3. Remain in the main Emergency Department for further assessment and treatment for any physical health conditions 
  4. The Emergency Department physician will determine if a patient is to be assessed by a psychiatrist (not every patient who presents to PES will be assessed by a psychiatrist).

If you are in a situation that involves immediate risk of harm to self or others, please call 9-1-1.

As always, please remember to use your EMERGENCY DEPARTMENT wisely.


General Information on Psychiatric Emergency Services

Referral Required?
Not required

Learn About

News & Events

Potential adjustments to overnight staffing at Saanich Peninsula Hospital Emergency Department

Potential adjustments to overnight staffing at Saanich Peninsula Hospital Emergency Department

Saanich Peninsula Hospital is currently experiencing overnight staffing challenges and as we enter the summer months, patients may experience an alternative model of care in the emergency department.

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temporary service interruption

Temporary service interruption at Cormorant Island Community Health Centre Emergency Department

Due to limited care provider availability, the Cormorant Island Community Health Centre (CICHC) emergency department (ED) will be closed from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. from April 7 to April 10, inclusive.
The CICHC ED will re-open as normally scheduled at 8 a.m. on April 11.

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Temporary service interruption extended

Extension of temporary overnight service interruption at Port Hardy Hospital emergency department

Port Hardy Hospital emergency department will continue to be closed overnights from 5 p.m. to 7 a.m. through to the morning of February 6, 2023. It will remain open from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day during the overnight closure.

Read more