Structural Components of Integrated Behavioral Health Care: A Comparison of National Programs
- National integrated care initiatives share common elements such as population health management, care coordination, referral processes, quality improvement, and sustainability strategies.
- Measurement-based decision support, self-management support, and social service linkages are less clearly described by these initiatives.
- Areas in need of further development include workforce expansion, health information technology, and social determinants of health.
Initiatives that support and incentivize the integration of behavioral health and general medical care have become a focus of government strategies to achieve the triple aim of improved health, better patient experience, and reduced costs. The authors describe the components of four large-scale national initiatives aimed at integrating care for a wide range of behavioral health needs. Commonalities across these national initiatives highlight health care and social services needs that must be addressed to improve care for people with co-occurring behavioral health and general medical conditions. These findings can inform how to design, test, select, and align the most promising strategies for integrated care in a variety of settings.