How to Refer a Patient

Check capacity

Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine often has more requests from new patients than we have open appointments.

  1. Check to see if the mental health service your patient needs has capacity.
  2. Once we get a referral, we will fax you back to let you know if we have an opening within the following timelines for each clinic:
    • Early Childhood Clinic: We will work through our list of referrals and contact the family to schedule an appointment within 90 days. If there are any issues with insurance or inclusion criteria, we will notify you within 15 business days. We will fax you back once your patient has been scheduled.
    • Mood and Anxiety: We will notify you within 15 business days if we have an opening for your patient or not. We will let you know as soon as possible if there are any issues with insurance or inclusion criteria. If we have an opening, we will contact the family within 15 business days to schedule an appointment.
    • Program to Enhance Attention, Regulation and Learning (PEARL) for ADHD: We will work through our list of referrals and contact the family to schedule an appointment within 90 days. If there are any issues with insurance or inclusion criteria, we will notify you within 15 business days. We will fax you back once your patient has been scheduled
  3. If we leave a message with the family to schedule an appointment, we will hold their spot for three business days.
  4. If we do not have capacity, view our list of community resources for families.

    Referral information

    For healthcare professionals

    If you are a provider, fax a New Appointment Request Form (PDF) (DOC) to 206-987-3121 or 866-985-3121 (toll-free).

    Your patient will be seen as quickly as possible by the provider who is the best match for managing the current problem.

    View our complete guidelines about how to refer a patient, including pre-referral work-up:

    • Early Childhood Clinic Referral Information (PDF)
    • Mood and Anxiety Program Referral Information (PDF)
      • We accept both MASC and SCARED screening tools for anxiety-related disorders, but prefer MASC.
      • For children younger than 8, we recommend including the Spence Anxiety Scale.
      • We can oversee a medication consultation trial. However, once medication doses are stabilized, patients will be returned to their primary care providers for ongoing management.
    • Program to Enhance Attention, Regulation and Learning (PEARL) Referral Information (PDF)
      • All referrals to PEARL need to include a Vanderbilt Assessment completed within the last 3 months by both the patient’s caregiver and teacher
      • In addition, please include your top three reasons for referral
        • After my evaluation and reviewing the patient’s Vanderbilt scales the diagnostic picture remains unclear/complex.
        • After my evaluation and reviewing the patient’s Vanderbilt the severity of this patient’s problems is too high to be treated in primary care.
        • After optimizing medication the patient is still in need of other treatment approaches (e.g., behavior therapy) to address impairments.
        • After optimizing medication symptoms and/or impairments have persisted or worsened.
        • This patient’s caregivers specifically requested a referral to the PEARL Clinic.
        • I have limited training in the evaluation and treatment of attention, learning, or behavior problems.

    Resources

    For healthcare professionals

    • Partnership Access Line (PAL) 
      Telephone-based child mental health consultation system for primary care doctors, nurse practitioners and physician assistants throughout Washington and Wyoming

    For families if no appointments are available

    It is important for families to get care when their child needs it, and many resources in the community can help if Seattle Children’s has no openings. Learn more about community health resources.

    We’re committed to partnering with referring providers

    Call the Provider-to-Provider Line at 206-987-7777 or, toll-free, 1-877-985-4637, if you need to talk with us for any reason or for a consultation.

    Learn more about managing your patients at Seattle Children's.