Implementation of Measurement-based Practices Enables Professionals to Guide Treatment Decisions

Jürgen Unützer, M.D., M.A., M.P.H., discusses the three key outcomes, also known as the “Triple Aim,” identified from 20 years of research and practice and more than 70 publications in integrated care: (1) improved patient experience, (2) better health outcomes, and (3) lower health care costs.

Measurement-based practice is critical to these key outcomes. In this framework, patients describe their mental health symptoms before or during the primary care visit. Research suggests that current mental health treatments are generally only 50 percent effective for all patients. Measurement-based practice allows professionals to assess the severity of symptoms, the treatment to choose, and the efficacy of the treatment. Implementation of measurement-based practices allows clinicians to rely on a brief, yet effective, tool to guide their and their patients’ treatment decisions, thus effectively meeting the goals of the Triple Aim.