Primary Care Behavioral Health
Spectrum Health Care has designed our Primary Care Behavioral Health (PCBH) program to assist patients achieve their desired health goals. Whether it is weight loss, smoking cessation, or decreased anxiety, one of your PCBH coaches will help establish realistic goals, provide guidance and resources to help make it all happen. This person is your official SHC cheerleader! We want you to succeed in all you do, and you need to know there is always someone in your corner.
What is Primary Care Behavioral Health?
Behavioral health is an umbrella term that includes mental health and substance abuse conditions, life stressors and crises, stress-related physical symptoms, and health behaviors. Primary Care Behavioral Health (also called behavioral health integration, integrated care, collaborative care, or integrated behavioral health care) combines primary health care and mental health care in one setting.
PCBH blends care in one setting with the expertise of mental health, substance use, and primary care clinicians, along with feedback from patients and their caregivers. This team-based approach provides better coordination and communication, while working toward one set of overall health goals.
How is PCBH different from Mental Health Services or Counseling?
These services are an enhancement of your overall health care and are not specialty mental health care. Documentation of your assessment and recommendations from the PCBH will be written in your medical record, thus ensuring both your provider and team are current on all treatments and assessments. A separate mental health record will not be kept when you are seen by your team. This service is viewed as part of the primary care spectrum and is intended to assist you with meeting your health goals, not necessarily going deep into your psyche. If there is a time during these sessions that larger and more complex issues arise, we will work with you and your primary care provider to connect you with an appropriate mental health specialist (LPC, LCSW, Psychiatrist. etc.).
Can you benefit from Primary Care Behavioral Health?
A growing body of research shows integrated behavioral health services improves health and patient experience, while reducing unnecessary costs in time, money, and delays.
PCBH offers many benefits:
- One-stop for convenience – Just like in shopping, we are creatures who prefer one-stop and done. This is exactly why PCBH is effective.
- Expertise combined – Primary care providers are not afforded enough time to fully assist patients with mental and behavioral health concerns. With the PCBH team in the same setting, this offers patients and providers a seamless connection of combined expertise to treat all of the patient’s needs.
- Patients with chronic conditions need more guidance – When health issues are constant, mental health issues are more prevalent. Without addressing mental and behavioral health issues, primary health issues tend not to improve as quickly or not to the level needed for patient to have a better quality of life.
- Cost savings – With primary care and PCBH treatment in one setting, the costs are automatically reduced. In addition, when combining PCBH treatment with primary care needs, it has been found to reduce the cost for additional primary care expenses including reduction of some medications and their related costs.
What happens when you are referred to the PCBH program?
When recommended by your primary care provider, whether by our Clinic or other referral source, your PCBH team member will start with confirming your needs, expectations, and health causes for the referral. At this time, you will also be made aware of the information provided in the referral request.
Our trained staff will then ask you specific questions about your physical symptoms, any emotional concerns you are experiencing, your behaviors, and how all of these might be related. At the end of the first consultation, you will receive a solution-focused assessment and recommended treatment plan from your PCBH team member.
With a treatment plan agreed upon, your PCBH team member will then set a treatment schedule. In general, appointments are no more than 30 minutes, on a weekly basis, for a length of 4-8 weeks. Services are provided both in our Clinic setting and virtually through our Microsoft Teams Network.
With PCBH, Better Health is Just Around the Corner
If you believe that you are not obtaining the best health outcomes possible, then speak with your Primary Care Provider about connecting you to our PCBH program. Call us today to begin your path to Better Health!