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Comprehensive Psychiatric Emergency Program (CPEP)

The Comprehensive Psychiatric Emergency Program (CPEP) is located on the St. Joseph's Hospital campus, at 301 Prospect Avenue, Emergency Services Building, entrance off North Townsend Street. Click here for a campus map.

CPEP is a licensed Psychiatric Emergency room, serving individuals from Onondaga and Madison counties, and visitors in the Greater Syracuse area. CPEP is fully staffed 24 hours a day, seven days per week. CPEP has both a locked secured area for involuntary patients and a non-secured area for voluntary presentations. Visitors are free to come and go as they please.

CPEP provides evaluation and treatment for individuals of all ages who are suffering from an acute mental health crisis. Referrals to CPEP are from a variety of community agencies, as well as from individuals or their family members.

Description of the Program

The Comprehensive Psychiatric Emergency Program is composed of three major components of service. These components include:
  • Emergency Room Evaluation and Treatment
  • Extended Observation Beds (EOB)
  • Mobile Crisis Outreach (MCO)
In the CPEP Emergency Room individuals experiencing a crisis receive a complete psychiatric examination, which includes a triage by a registered nurse, a psychosocial assessment by a clinician and a psychiatric evaluation by a psychiatrist. The culmination of these multidisciplinary team assessments are the formulation of a treatment/disposition plan specific to the patient. This process is generally completed within six hours after being received into the Emergency Room.

There are nine certified Emergency Observation Beds (EOB). This component offers an opportunity for further clinical assessment and stabilization of symptoms. Individuals can be admitted to the EOB for a period not to exceed 72 hours. In-patient hospitalizations may at times be avoided after a brief period of stabilization.

Mobile Crisis Outreach (MCO) provides an off-site initial screening for individuals in emotional crisis. Individuals who require a full psychiatric assessment by the physician will be transported to CPEP by 911 services.

The MCO team also performs home visits with patients who have been recently discharged from CPEP. The goal is to assist the patient in maintaining stability, until the connection with an outpatient provider has been completed.

Crisis Residence is an additional service that is provided through a linkage agreement with Hutchings Psychiatric Center. Patients discharged from CPEP who are experiencing a crisis with their current housing can be referred to this service. The beds are located at the Hutchings Psychiatric Center. These beds have a maximum stay of five days.

Community Linkages

The CPEP plays an integral role in the delivery of Mental Health Services in Onondaga County.

The program maintains linkages with area hospitals and outpatient providers. Upon discharge from CPEP, patients who do not have an established mental health care provider will be assisted in obtaining follow-up care.

Staffing Composition

The Staffing at CPEP consists of physicians, clinical social workers, registered professional nurses, mental health counselors and patient care technicians, as well as a variety of support personnel.

Children's Health Innovation Project (CHIP)

Children's Health  Innovation Project (CHIP) was a federally funded project to improve mental health services in Central New York for children, adolescents, and their families by training primary care providers in children’s mental health care, increasing the availability of community-based services, and increasing the use of technology to provide mental health services.
St. Joseph's Hospital Health Center
CPEP Services
Phone: (315) 448-6555
Address: 301 Prospect Avenue Syracuse, NY 13203
CPEP Unit and CPEP Administration
Phone: (315) 726-8653