If you are interested in scheduling a psychiatric evaluation, you must first make an Initial Consultation (IC) appointment with a CAPS counselor. If after the IC, you are referred for brief treatment at CAPS and meet for your First Counseling Appointment, your counselor will assess your situation and if a medication evaluation is therapeutically appropriate and/or recommended, the counselor will assist you in making an appointment with one of the members of our Psychiatry team.
However, If you need a refill only on a current prescription and/or do not desire or need therapeutic support, referrals to University Health Service or community psychiatrists will be provided for ongoing care. Referral information can be obtained by calling CAPS and requesting to speak to the Counselor on Duty.
The first appointment for a medication evaluation is scheduled for 90 minutes. During this time, the psychiatrist or psychiatric nurse practitioner will ask you questions about your general health as well as your emotional health. Be prepared to discuss any prescription medications, over the counter medications or herbal preparations you are taking. You will also be asked about medical conditions, family medical history and known medication allergies. It will also be important to communicate any history of seizures, head injuries or eating disorders, alcohol or substance use as these conditions can influence decisions about medication options.
If, at the end of the evaluation, it appears medication would be an appropriate treatment option in conjunction with therapeutic support, the psychiatrist or psychiatric nurse practitioner will make recommendations about specific medications, discuss possible side effects, provide instructions for taking the medication and answer any questions or concerns you might have. Then, a return appointment will be scheduled to discuss how well the medication is working and if any modifications are needed.
The psychiatric team offers 8-10 first appointments per week for medication evaluations. Sometimes, even with the number of first appointments that are offered, the wait for a scheduled appointment can stretch longer than what we want. When this happens, please talk with your counselor about other options that might be available.
You will continue to be monitored by the psychiatrist or psychiatric nurse practitioner as long as you are taking the medication, enrolled at U of M and actively participating in counseling at CAPS.