Background: Study of referral pattern to a Psychiatry Department helps us to understand the prevalence of psychiatric disorders in in-patients of a tertiary care hospital. It also helps us to assess the need of sensitization of the primary care physicians and for improvement of General Hospital Psychiatric Units (GHPU).
Objective: The aim of the study was to assess the nature of referral services to a General Hospital Psychiatric unit.
Material and Methods: All successive inpatient referrals for a period of nine months were included in the study. Socio demographic characteristics of the patients were analysed, they were classified according to the referring department, the reason for referral and current psychiatric diagnosis.
Results: A total of 114 (0.95%) patients were referred to our department over a period of 9 months out of a total of 11948 admissions in the period. The major reason for referral was altered sensorium (24.5%) followed by unexplained medical symptoms with low mood (21%) and suicide attempts by different means including Deliberate Self Harm (DSH) (17.5%).
Keywords: GHPU, Consultation Liaison Psychiatry, Co-morbidity, medically unexplained symptoms.