Journal of Behavioral Health and Psychology. 2018; 7(4):(247-318)


A.C.T. like a champion: Primary care providers’ responses to an integrated care initiative

Jennifer Langhinrichsen-Rohling, Candice N. Selwyn, Heather A. Finnegan, Selena Jackson

Abstract

Background: Primary care and mental/behavioral health (MBH) integration is designed to improve patient outcomes and enhance access to care. To achieve system-level change, embedded integrated care “champions” are needed; however, no known conceptual model for identifying champion primary care providers (PCPs) of integrated care has been articulated. To address this gap, we propose that PCP championship consists of greater (1) Awareness of patients’ MBH needs, (2) Comfort assessing patients’ MBH needs, and (3) dedication to MBH Training (A.C.T.). Method: A provider survey was administered yearly (n = 4 time points, 2013–2016) at a large multi-site Federally Qualified Health Center actively working to achieve MBH integration. The survey assessed PCPs’ Awareness of a variety of MBH needs, Comfort diagnosing MBH disorders, and interest in MBH Training. Results: As expected, the cohort of PCPs demonstrated significantly increased Awareness of MBH needs, greater Comfort diagnosing MBH disorders, and increased interest in MBH Training over time. Overall prevalence of “champions,” indicated by both high levels of comfort and an expressed interest in training, decreased initially and then consistently increased across time (37%, 19%, 22%, and 52%). Conclusions: The A.C.T. model may aid in future MBH integration efforts by providing a framework for assessing and facilitating PCP integrated care championship.

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