Blue Shield of California Foundation
Advancing Primary Care and Behavioral Health Integration through Community Collaboration
Supporting Community Health Centers
Community health centers play a critical role in delivering primary healthcare services to low-income Californians. Increasingly, this is also true for behavioral healthcare services. Findings from a 2014 survey of low-income Californians indicate that patients prefer to receive mental health or substance use treatment from providers within or affiliated with their primary care center, but few feel like they currently have access to these services.
While some progress has been made, there are a number of issues that continue to be important for community health centers to address as they embark on the next phase of their integration efforts. These include increasing staff capacity to a level commensurate with patient need, using data and registries to measure improvement, delivering more culturally and linguistically appropriate services, and improving screening and treatment for substance use conditions.
Partners leading this work across California include:
California Primary Care Association
Community Health Clinic Association of Los Angeles County
Health Improvement Partnership of Santa Cruz
Leveraging Federally Qualified Health Centers in California's Behavioral Health Continuum
Full Report: Exploring Low-Income Californians' Needs and Preferences for Behavioral Health Care
Infographic: 2014-2015 Core Support Initiative: Behavioral Healthcare Focus
Additional tools and examples of innovations in this area: