Press Release

Sheppard Pratt Launches Virtual Crisis Clinic for Evaluations and Referrals


Virtual clinic aims to decrease emergency room visits for psychiatric patients as state prepares for COVID-19 surge

Sheppard Pratt recently launched its Virtual Crisis Walk-In Clinic to provide those in crisis with an online mental health assessment by a provider and connection to the most appropriate level of care. The Virtual Crisis Walk-In Clinic is now available to individuals living in Maryland who need urgent psychiatric care. Further, this virtual clinic will be an important alternative for those seeking emergency mental health care.

“It is important that we continue to provide vital mental health services to those in need during these uncertain times,” said Dr. Deepak Prabhakar, medical director of outpatient services. “Our virtual clinic meets an important need as it can help decrease the volume of psychiatric patients in hospital emergency rooms, when those hospitals are triaging and taking care of patients with COVID-19. We can provide greater access to mental health services to support some of our most vulnerable populations and meet them where they are through a virtual assessment.”

The Virtual Crisis Walk-In Clinic was developed to ensure access for people who might be struggling with their mental health and are unable to come to a Sheppard Pratt location in person. The virtual clinic provides psychiatric triage and referral to Sheppard Pratt’s other virtual and in-person care options through a secure, online platform. Sheppard Pratt therapists and clinicians will schedule a follow up virtual or in-person appointment for therapy and/or medication management or recommend inpatient admission once the assessment has been conducted. 

Virtual crisis walk-in appointments can be made online or by phone and are available Monday – Friday from 10:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m. and Saturdays from 1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. to assess needs and connect to appropriate care.

Sheppard Pratt also has an in-person Crisis Walk-In Clinic, which opened in 2011 and provides nearly 7,000 individuals across the region each year with urgent psychiatric care. More information and hours of operation for both clinics can be found here.

About Sheppard Pratt

Sheppard Pratt is the largest private, nonprofit provider of mental health, substance use, developmental disability, special education, and social services in the country. A nationwide resource, Sheppard Pratt provides services across a comprehensive continuum of care, spanning both hospital- and community-based resources. Since its founding in 1853, Sheppard Pratt has been innovating the field through research, best practice implementation, and a focus on improving the quality of mental health care on a global level. Sheppard Pratt has been consistently recognized as a top national psychiatric hospital by U.S. News & World Report for more than 30 years.