Clinical Practice Guidelines

APA practice guidelines provide evidence-based recommendations for the assessment and treatment of psychiatric disorders and are intended to assist in clinical decision making by presenting systematically developed patient care strategies in a standardized format.

APA makes the practice guidelines freely available to promote their dissemination and use; however, copyright protections are enforced in full. No part of these guidelines may be reproduced except as permitted under Sections 107 and 108 of the United States Copyright Act. For permission for reuse, visit our Permissions and Licensing Center. Also visit PsychiatryOnline to access the guidelines and purchase the complete collection of guidelines and watches.

Recently Released Guidelines:
Pharmacological Treatment of Patients with Alcohol Use Disorder
Use of Antipsychotics to Treat Agitation or Psychosis in Patients With Dementia
Psychiatric Evaluation of Adults

Legacy Practice Guidelines

Other Resources

Disclaimer: APA provides the following links as a service to our members. Listing here does not express or imply endorsement. These resources are not intended to serve as a standard, guideline or clinical policy. The views expressed are those of the authors. The findings, opinions, and conclusions of these resources do not necessarily represent the views the APA or any of its officers, trustees or the majority of its members.

Other Practice Guidelines
  • The Committee on Practice Guidelines has specifically reviewed the following practice guidelines and makes them available as additional information for psychiatrists:
    VA/DoD Clinical Practice Guideline on the Management of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder and Acute Stress Reaction - 2017
  • APA guidelines generally describe treatment of adult patients. For the treatment of children and adolescents with psychiatric disorders, practice guidelines, updates, and parameters are available from the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.
  • The VA/DOD provides clinical practice guidelines on a variety of major medical health issues, but also guidelines addressing mental health topics. They also provide summaries, pocket guides and patient/family tools.
  • The ECRI Guidelines Trust™ is a database of clinical practice guidelines from around the world that is maintained by the ECRI Institute and publicly available. Guidelines must meet certain minimum criteria to be listed on the web page; however, those that meet IOM standards receive a TRUST Scorecard. This site is similar to the now-closed National Guideline Clearinghouse but is not affiliated with a governmental agency.
Other Practice Materials
  • APA Resource documents are collections of information, data, and reviews of the literature developed by APA components and staff. Like task force reports, they do not represent APA policy.
  • For information on using telepsychiatry in your practice, please check out APA's Telepsychiatry Toolkit, which includes a tool kit, blog, videos, and a guide on best practices in videoconferencing-based telemental health.
  • The Committee on Practice Guidelines has specifically reviewed the following documents and makes them available as additional information for psychiatrists:
    QTc Prolongation and Psychotropic Medications - 2018 (APA Resource Document)

Questions?

For questions about APA practice guidelines or the development process, please contact Jennifer Medicus, Practice Guidelines Deputy Director, at jmedicus@psych.org or 202-559-3972.