Integration is considered an effective way to provide care across the lifespan.  Several of the early models for integration were around treatment of depression in the geriatric population.   At the other end of the continuum, integration is being recommended as an effective means of providing comprehensive care in pediatrics.  Information on specific age-related issues related to integration will is examined in this section.

Latest News

Need for Integrated Pediatric Health Care Highlighted in Two Recent Studies

Two recently published studies highlight the benefits of integrating behavioral health in primary care for children and youth.

Unmet Need for Pediatric Care Coordination for Children with Mental Health Conditions

A study, published in Pediatrics in March of 2014, revealed a significant level of unmet need for care coordination among parents of children with a mental health condition. Care coordination is a way of connecting children with special health care needs and their families to critical services and resources. This type of care has been linked to lower health care costs, better health outcomes, and it helps families to use the health care system more efficiently.

Parents’ Behavioral Health Expectations for Pediatricians

Parents respond positively when primary care providers (PCPs) address behavioral health (BH) concerns, a recent study shows. The article, Do Parents Expect Pediatricians to Pay Attention to Behavioral Health? is published in Clinical Pediatrics.

Pre-Visit iPad Screener Shifts Teen Annual Health Visit Focus to Psychosocial Concerns

Taking 10 minutes to answer questions on an iPad before an annual visit may help adolescents and their pediatricians address sensitive mental health issues. A recent study published in the Journal of Adolescent Health looks at the use of a computerized screening program, DartScreen, and how it impacts what takes place during adolescents’ annual visit.

Collaborative Care Improves Outcomes for Dementia Patients

According to a recent Health Affairs article, Health Aging Brain Center Improved Care Coordination and Produced Net Savings, more than 4.7 million Medicare recipients have dementia which often co-occurs with depression. Together, dementia and depression costs Medicare $30 billion in annual spending. Most Medicare beneficiaries with these conditions are seen in primary care which is often not well equipped to provide appropriate care.

Pediatric Mental Health Screenings Soar in Massachusetts

Since 2007, when a federal judge ruled that doctors could provide better diagnosis and treatment for children on Medicaid with mental illnesses, primary care physicians in Massachusetts have screened more children for mental and developmental conditions than any other state. These screenings are not a diagnostic tool, but a way to flag children who may need more attention or a consultation from a mental health specialist. Dr.

Integration at Twin City Pediatrics

In the United States, 25% of the population is affected by mental illness. However, due to lack of access to specialized care, illness unawareness, and stigma, patients often delay getting the care they need. Moreover, 60% of those who do not receive treatment for mental illness look to primary care for services. Consequently, many primary care practices are looking to integrate behavioral health and primary care to improve health outcomes and reduce healthcare costs. One such practice is Twin City Pediatrics, a group of three pediatric practices in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.