Behavioral Health Integration
Integrated Primary Care and Behavioral Health
WHY WE CHOSE THIS PROJECT
The Behavioral Health Integration project is designed to ensure that patients are treated holistically and both their medical and Behavioral Health (BH) needs are met. In our resident survey, mental health and schizophrenia were rated among the top five health issues in the community, and more than 20% of consumers did not know where to go to obtain mental health services, substance abuse services, or alcohol abuse services in their county. BH disorders are one of the top five Medicaid inpatient conditions in the Hudson Valley. Given the prevalence and coordination of care needed to treat BH, this data indicate that there is a significant opportunity to resolve this gap in care.
Those with BH diagnoses have marked disparity in health outcomes when compared to the general population. One of the reasons for these poor outcomes is related to lack of primary care access. Staff at medical clinics may not have experience in working with members with serious mental illnesses, and these members may not have the ability to advocate for themselves. Co-location and integration of care is a primary means of addressing this issue.
Our research also revealed provider and community resource gaps that will benefit from the active involvement of peer organizations in this integrated model of care. MHVC will leverage the over 1,300 community organizations in the Hudson Valley to address this gap. In addition to resources, there are gaps in the infrastructure that prevent sharing treatment plans and Electronic Health Records (EHRs) across provider sites. These gaps can be closed with systems for sharing treatment plans and EHRs across provider sites, including community-based crisis stabilization services.
The project objective is integration of mental health and substance abuse with primary care services to ensure coordination of care. The goals of this project can be achieved through three different models:
- Model 1: Integration of BH specialists into primary care clinics
- Model 2: Integration of primary care services into established BH sites such as clinics and Crisis Centers
- Model 3: IMPACT (Improving Mood - Promoting Access to Collaborative Treatment) Model, BH specialists integrated into primary care coordination teams using collaborative care standards
To meet the varied needs of BH clients with co-morbid conditions, we plan to implement all three models within MHVC, and plan to explore both real and innovative virtual integration models.
We will leverage the significant experience of our partners, as well as maintain the strong involvement of community based resources, since peer resources and social supports are key components of recovery.