The mission of the Integrated Behavioral Health Program (IBH) is two-fold: to provide effective, evidence-based behavioral health services to patients with mental health issues and to increase the skill and comfort level of primary care providers in addressing mental health concerns.
The IBH Program at People’s employs a collaborative care model in which the primary care provider, behavioral health specialist, and consulting psychiatrist work together to address a patient’s mental health issues within the primary care setting. The IBH program is available to existing adult and adolescent patients. Patients in the IBH program are primarily treated for diagnoses of depression and anxiety. Patients with other mental health or substance abuse diagnoses or those who are in need of more specialized, intensive care are referred to the appropriate community providers. People’s may remain their medical home.
Clinic social workers screen patients for enrollment in the IBH program. When eligible, a more comprehensive clinical assessment is completed and an individualized care plan is established. Through the IBH program patients may receive behavioral medication prescriptions through their primary care provider, ongoing care monitoring, and the option of short-term psychotherapy with the behavioral health specialist.
Patient progress is monitored by the behavioral health specialist on an ongoing basis using standardized measures for tracking symptoms until mutually–set goals for improvement are met. The psychiatrist consults with the primary care provider and a behavioral health specialist regarding diagnosis and the optimal course of treatment. Funding from the St. David’s Foundation has enabled the People’s pharmacy to add medications to the formulary to bridge the gap between the time medication is first prescribed and the time the patient can receive it through the Patient Pharmaceutical Assistance Program.