Integrating Mental Health Services Into The Pc Setting

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Integrating mental health services into the PC setting is believed to: increase the likelihood people in need of mental health services will receive treatment, improve the health of the entire patient, and reduce the overall use of healthcare services resulting in a cost reduction. (Brawer, Martielli, Pye, Manwaring, & Tierney, 2010) These benefits have been of particular interest amongst the veteran population, where the rates of mental illness are increasing steadily. (Seal et al., 2011) Goals of integrated healthcare systems include identification and management of mental illness, such as substance abuse, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and depression. (Bohnert, Pfeiffer, Szymanski, & McCarthy, 2013) Large trials
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Therefore, the literature on such integration is still growing. This literature review focuses specifically on the effects of integrating mental health care into health services received by US veterans. Shiner and colleagues’ primary goal of their research was to review the events following a positive screening for a mental illness in a PC setting. If there were not a solid system in place for treating mental illness post-PC, screening would not be beneficial to patients. By carrying out this research, mental health services and the design of mental health systems could ultimately be improved.
In order to complete the research objective, Shiner et. al. focused on a population consisting of Veterans Administration (VA) patients being treated at White River Junction in Vermont that were screened for depression, PTSD, and alcohol abuse in 2011, but had not received mental health treatment or a positive screening in 2009 or 2010. The study population was assigned to one of 3 groups based on where they were receiving a majority of their treatment: PC, an integrated clinic, or a mental health clinic. The population was stratified by care setting for analysis. Statistics were also performed to determine differences in quality of treatment and the likelihood of receiving mental health visits, adequate pharmacotherapy, and adequate psychotherapy. Patients that presented with severe forms of these disorders were treated in a mental health setting while
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