AAEM Announces New Position Statement on Emergency Physicians Determining Involuntary Hold Status

January 6, 2015

MILWAUKEE — The American Academy of Emergency Medicine (AAEM) announces a new position statement approved at the December meeting of the board of directors.

Position Statement on Determining Involuntary Hold Status
Emergency physicians have the responsibility for all emergency patients’ care and disposition — including which patients require involuntary holds. The regulations concerning psychiatric holds or detainments vary from state to state. Some states require that law enforcement places a patient in an involuntary hold status without physician input.

EPs should have the responsibility for patient care and disposition, including who needs involuntary hold or detainment. If the emergency physician is not able to place a patient on an involuntary hold, then the emergency physician must not be held accountable for any adverse consequences that result from decisions made by other authorized entities.

Read all AAEM position statements at: www.aaem.org/resources/statements.


The American Academy of Emergency Medicine (AAEM) is the specialty society in emergency medicine today. As an organization, AAEM believes achievement of board certification represents the only acceptable method of attaining recognition as a specialist in emergency medicine.

For more information, please visit www.aaem.org or call 800-884-2236.



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