203499 Increasing access to behavioral health care for underserved populations: A 10 year process

Tuesday, November 10, 2009: 12:45 PM

Suzanne M. Daub, LCSW , Department of Behavioral Health, Delaware Valley Community Health, Philadelphia, PA
Marsha L. Johnson, LCSW , Department of Behavioral Health, Delaware Valley Community Health, Philadelphia, PA
Over the past 10 years, Delaware Valley Community Health (DVCH) has worked to improve access to behavioral health care for the 25,000 individuals treated annually at two urban Federally Qualified Community Health Centers (FQHCs). This presentation will examine the evolution of this process beginning with an initial effort to improve depression screening and referral of primary care patients; moving to the co-location of traditional behavioral health practitioners within the primary care setting; and, finally, to the current model of integration known as Behavioral Health Consultation (BHC). In this model the behavioral health provider works side by side with the primary care provider (PCP) as a consultant on behavioral health issues. This approach makes behavioral health services accessible to a far larger population and relieves the pressure on the PCP who often feels ill-prepared and has limited time to effectively treat patients with behavioral health issues. The presenters will introduce the core components of the BHC model and its implementation. We will compare our experience with the referral, co-location and BHC models, discuss the conditions that enabled the shift in practice, and provide data showing the increase in program utilization and revenue.

Learning Objectives:
Compare and contrast three practice models and their relative effectiveness for increasing access to behavioral health services (referral, co-location, consultation).

Keywords: Access to Care, Mental Health Care

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have directed the Department of Behavioral Health at Delaware Valley Community Health for 14 years. During this time I have overseen the integration of behavioral health and primary care and have presented on this topic at the National Association of Community Health Centers as well as at the Collaborative Family Healthcare Association.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.