The Faroe Islands are a group of islands in the North Atlantic Ocean between Norway and Iceland inhabited by about 42,000 people. They are considered a nation with home rule within the Danish Kingdom. A Psychiatric Department was not established on the islands until 1969. Before this, psychiatric patients were referred to the local General Hospital and about half of the patients in each diagnostic group were sent on the Psychiatric Hospital in Nykøbing on Zealand, Denmark. Since the establishment of the department, admissions have increased in all diagnostic groups, especially in the group of senile psychoses. The total increase amounts to 2.4 times the admission rates of psychiatric cases to the General Hospital and 4.4 times the admission rates to the Psychiatric Hospital in Nykøbing in the last years prior to the start of the local service. The outpatient department has grown steadily, the patients attending are distributed in diagnostic groups similar to Danish outpatient departments.