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Venturing Inside Bellevue's Psychiatric ER

Oct 23, 2009 (Fresh Air)

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For nine years, psychiatrist Julie Holland ran the psychiatric emergency room at Bellevue Hospital in New York City on Saturday and Sunday nights. Along with treating patients, she served as liaison to the medical ER and the toxicology department.

Holland says one of the hardest parts of her job was figuring out which patients were manic or schizophrenic and which were high on cocaine or methamphetamines. An expert on street drugs, Holland spent her college years researching and writing Ecstasy: The Complete Guide. Her new memoir is called Weekends at Bellevue: Nine Years on the Night Shift at the psych ER.

Holland is an assistant professor of psychiatry at NYU School of Medicine, and runs a private practice in New York City.

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