Your 52 year old patient is in behavioral health because he went off of his medications for his schizophrenia. He appears as if he is talking to someone who is not there. You asked who he is talking to. He responded by saying, "Cheryl. She's right here." No one is there. What is the most appropriate response with the highest priority?


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- "Are you having a hallucination? Is this person telling you to hurt yourself or anyone else?"

- "No one is there."

- "Hi Cheryl! How are you?"

- "Cheryl, go away and stop bothering him."


It is important to point out hallucinations and stay in reality. Safety is always the priority, so by staying in reality and calling it a hallucination and asking if this hallucination is instructing them to harm themselves or another person is crutial. Saying no one is there is dismissive. Speaking to "Cheryl" will only continue this hallucination. Telling "Cheryl" to go away does not bring reality into the situation, is dissmissive, and the patient didn't indicate that "Cheryl" was bothering him, so he may feel that this is controlling.

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