Primary Care Behavioral Health

Creating and Managing an Integrated Care Practice


After this session participants will be able to:

  • Understand the ways a behavioral health clinician can contribute to better primary care services.
  • Design a process for adding behavioral health care to a primary care practice.
  • Contribute to a team approach to the clinical routines involved in integrating behavioral health care.

Bio-Psycho-Social Treatment

  • Knowledgeably discuss common psychotropic medications with a patient, including indications, effects and side effects.
  • Appropriately recommend initiating medication to a primary care physician
  • Begin a care management program for depression in primary care
  • Describe an evidence-based biopsychosocial approach for chronic illnesses in primary care

Dealing with Substances and Pain in Primary Care

  • Conceptualize the stage of change of a patient in relation to a health behavior problem and to match motivational approach to that stage.
  • Identify substance abuse problems of patients presenting medical complaints. 
  • Work collaboratively to help patients with substance abuse problems.

Behavioral Health and Pediatrics

  • Screen children for developmental and behavioral problems
  • Guide parents on behavioral issues in a culturally acceptable and effective manner
  • Guide parents and adolescents on behavioral issues in a culturally acceptable and effective manner.

Serious Mental Illness

  • Define “social articulation” and use the concept to understand clients’ common maladaptive behaviors in medical care settings
  • Deliver a structured experience in health promotion for people with serious mental illness
  • Teach patients techniques to calm their bodies’ reactivity.

Population Health in Primary Care

  • Briefly assess, engage and intervene with adults with behavioral health needs in primary care
  • Discuss bodily symptoms that have no medical findings with patients in a way that promotes curiosity and coping in relation to the illness.
  • Recommend the optimal screening tools for a primary care setting
  • Know how to use these tools in practice

Families and Culture in Primary Care and Issues of Implementation

  • Adapt the approach to specific patients based on knowledge of cultural factors
  • Effectively and sensitively conduct a family medical meeting
  • Adapt care for the specific needs and requirements of a geriatric population.