Behavioral Health Services

Porter Adventist Hospital

Electroconvulsive Therapy at Porter Adventist Hospital
2525 S. Downing St
Denver, Colorado 80210

Behavioral Health Services

Porter Adventist Hospital

About Electroconvulsive Therapy

Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT) can be a very effective treatment for patients that are severely depressed, suicidal or have a bipolar disorder with depression or mania. At Porter Adventist Hospital, we believe in whole person care that addresses each person's physical, mental, emotional and spiritual well-being. When you choose Porter for your patient's ECT needs, you will be working with an organization that has a highly qualified staff and a reputation for compassion, excellence, and patient education.

The decision to pursue ECT as a treatment option is one that typically comes after much discussion and exploration of other therapies. Criteria for referral to ECT includes patients who are adults, 19 years and older who:

  • Are unresponsive to other forms of treatment
  • Pose an immediate danger to themselves or others
  • Are not good candidates for antidepressants or mood stabilizer medication 

Patient Stories & ECT Facts

ECT Information

Research has consistently shown Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT) to be the most effective treatment for
severe depression, especially if accompanied by psychotic features or catatonia.

Need More ECT Info?

To request more information about ECT, contact us.

  • Outpatient ECT Services

    Outpatient ECT services are appropriate for patients who have at least one reliable support person.

    In particular, the patient must have:

    • The ability to care for self at home.
    • The ability to comply with the NPO restrictions prior to all treatments.
    • Someone who can drive the patient to and from the hospital for treatment.
    • A reliable adult who will stay with the patient until short-term memory is regained (if profound memory loss occurs during a treatment).
    • No other medical complications or conditions that are contraindicated for this procedure.
  • Inpatient ECT Services

    Although ECT is often performed as an outpatient procedure, patients are candidates for an inpatient ECT series in some circumstances.

    These include situations in which the patient:

    • Is unable to complete the treatments due to safety issues
    • Has a concurrent medical condition or complication that would make outpatient treatment unsafe
  • What can I expect from ECT at Porter?

    Before a patient is eligible for ECT services, two licensed psychiatrists must each render separate opinions that ECT would benefit the patient. This is mandatory under Colorado law.

    At Porter Adventist Hospital ECT patients receive:

    • The support of an acute care hospital with on-call specialists such as cardiologists and neurologists.
    • Pre-ECT education for patients and their families conducted by a registered nurse from the ECT department.
    • Coordination of all pre-ECT requirements including insurance authorization and utilization review.
    • Completion of the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) by the patient before and after the ECT series to monitor progress.
    • Follow-up calls from a registered nurse to the patient after the ECT treatments.
    • An unparalleled reputation in the community for compassion and care.
  • How is ECT performed?

    ECT is performed under general anesthesia by an anesthesiologist and a psychiatrist. The series is done on a Monday, Wednesday and Friday rotation for an average of 8-12 treatments. Subsequent maintenance ECT may be done weekly or monthly, based upon the particular needs of a patient.

  • Professional Referrals for ECT

    If you believe your patient is a candidate for ECT, a qualified team of ECT psychiatrists at Porter Adventist Hospital is available to evaluate your patient for a second opinion. If you would like a Porter Adventist Hospital psychiatrist to provide a consultation and subsequent ECT, follow these steps:

    • Complete the First Opinion Letter that contains the patient's psychiatric and medical history, current and historical medications, Axis I-V diagnoses and your recommendations for an ECT series. We must have that letter before we can see the patient and render a second opinion.
    • Provide the name and manufacturer's telephone number for any indwelling device the patient has, such as a pacemaker.
    • Have available any medical consultation reports already completed that may affect the ECT, such as neurology or cardiology consults. 
    • Have available any previous ECT records if they were conducted at a hospital other than Porter Adventist Hospital. 
    • We strongly encourage you continue to see your patient during the ECT series so you may evaluate its effectiveness.
    • Provide your voicemail number so that we may easily contact you during your patient's ECT series.

    Send the completed First Opinion Letter to the consulting psychiatrist:

    Porter Adventist Hospital
    2525 S Downing St., 1 South
    Denver, CO 80210

    Phone: 720-763-8516
    Fax: 303-649-7147

  • Insurance

    The Centre for Behavioral Health is contracted with most major insurance plans including Medicare.

    The Center for Behavioral Health does not accept Medicaid  for the following services:

    • Outpatient Therapy
    • Medication Management

    Porter Adventist Hospital accepts most major insurance plans including Medicare and Medicaid for Adult and Senior Inpatient Acute Hospitalization and both Inpatient and Outpatient Electro-Convulsive Therapy (ECT) and Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP).