Benson Hospital, a critical access hospital that operates rural health clinics in Southern Arizona to provide comprehensive, family-centered care, today announced a partnership with Concert Health, a leading behavioral health medical group, to provide critical behavioral health services integrated directly within primary care. The collaboration gives all of Benson Hospital’s primary care practitioners and patients same-day access to Concert Health’s expert clinicians.
Accessing behavioral health services is challenging for all Americans, especially those in rural areas. One out of five adults with a mental illness report they are not able to get the treatment they need, while nearly half of Americans, or 46%, have had to or know someone who has had to drive more than an hour round trip to seek mental health treatment. This lack of access and availability creates huge barriers that leave many patients with no support. Others turn to their primary care providers, who often do not have the support or tools to intervene effectively and systematically track outcomes. With more than 100 million Americans living in communities with a shortage of behavioral health professionals, integrating these services into general care will be critical to improving clinical outcomes.
Benson Hospital and Concert Health together are delivering Collaborative Care, a model proven to significantly improve depression and anxiety outcomes in comparison to traditional treatment methods. With measurement-based tools and same-day support, Benson Hospital primary care practitioners can identify and diagnose behavioral health conditions within the primary care setting and make warm handoffs to Concert Health’s remote Behavioral Care Managers for evidence-based interventions.
“We are thrilled to make Concert Health part of our care team and bring behavioral health support directly to our patients,” said Julia Strange, chief executive officer of Benson Hospital. “We know the value of having healthcare close to home, and are committed to providing our patients with local access to high-quality, holistic care. Behavioral health is critical to overall health, and Concert Health’s support helps us close the care gap. We look forward to providing exceptional care to the Benson community together.”
“The Concert Health option that is available for patients with depression or anxiety is an unbelievably valuable service that the clinics of Benson Hospital offer,” said Nicklett Johnston, FNP B-C, DNP. “To the patient in need, this service offers support and valuable insight to help the patient prepare to continue on with life’s difficulties. Everyone needs help or support at one time in their life and this service provides a specialist who deals with problems of anxiety and depression, and through the voices of my patient’s who have dealt with these problems concerning depression and anxiety, they are finding the counseling provided enables them to
get to the next step of their anxiety and depression and start to heal. The Concert Health counseling helps the clinic in whole by providing a service that aids the patient in dealing with their depression and anxiety and leads us to take care of the patient more fully.”
“It is a privilege to bring behavioral health services to the Benson community,” said Virna Little, LCSW, PsyD, co-founder and chief operating officer of Concert Health. “Primary care providers are often responsible for treating an enormous amount of behavioral health conditions, especially in rural communities. Benson Hospital continues to implement innovative models and creative solutions to meet the needs of their patients, and we are proud to support their integration of high-quality behavioral health services into primary care.”
More information about the Collaborative Care Model can be found from the American Psychiatric Association and the University of Washington’s AIMs center.
Submitted by Benson Hospital