Commonwealth Medicine expert to moderate panel on integrating behavioral health into primary care

By Jennifer Rosinski

UMass Medical School Communications

August 23, 2013

Examples of how to integrate behavioral health into primary care practice, a central piece of the patient-centered medical home, will be the topic of a panel discussion being moderated by Judith L. Steinberg, MD, MPH, at a community health conference next week. Dr. Steinberg is deputy chief medical officer for UMass Medical School's Commonwealth Medicine division.

“Improving patients’ access to care in all areas of their health care needs, including behavioral health, is a key component of the patient-centered medical home,” said Steinberg, who leads the UMMS team that is implementing a statewide, multi-payer patient-centered medical home initiative.

The panel is on the program of the 2013 Community Health Institute & Expo hosted by the National Association of Community Health Centers. The conference, held at the Hyatt Regency Chicago, is scheduled Aug. 25-27.

“Integrating Behavioral Health Into Primary Care: Evidence-based Models” will take place from 3:15 to 4:45 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 26.

Alexander Blount, EdD, clinical professor of family medicine & community health and psychiatry and director of the UMMS Center for Integrated Primary Care, is one of the panelists. His presentation will outline the most common behavioral health needs of patients in primary care practices. Blount will also share various models for integrating care. More than 2,000 medical professionals have participated in his training programs in Primary Care Behavioral Health and Integrated Care Management.

Also included in the panel presentation is Kristin Spykerman, director of Health Home Services at Cherry Street Health Services in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Spykerman worked on the design and implementation of Cherry Street’s first fully integrated health clinic.

For more information about the conference, visit the NACHC web site.

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New center integrates mental health into primary care
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