Training Primary Care Practitioners about Integrated Behavioral Health: How Integrated is the Training?
- Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved
- Johns Hopkins University Press
- Volume 31, Number 4, November 2020, Supplement
- pp. 144-153
- Additional Information
- Purchase/rental options available:
Integrating behavioral health into primary care has shown promise in extending access to evidence-based care to the underserved while demonstrating increasing benefits in outcomes and in the practice environment as the level of integration increases. Primary care trainees must be ready for the increase in mental health and substance abuse treatment needs during and after the COVID-19 pandemic. To maximize primary care trainee skill building and leverage adult learning theories, training programs should involve something like apprenticeship rather than being didactic. In fully integrated behavioral health primary care settings, there should be behavioral health resources either on site or available virtually to meet patients' multiple biopsychosocial needs and to support primary care trainees. The level of integration of these programs can be evaluated via the Integrated Practice Assessment tool (IPAT) to assess gaps in structural components and to identify needed resources for fully integrated care settings that provide the optimal training environment. Future assessment of integrated care training is discussed.