Integration of Care is a statewide project. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), people with mental health and substance use disorders may die decades earlier than the average person, mostly from untreated and preventable chronic illnesses like hypertension, diabetes, obesity, and cardiovascular disease. The barriers to primary care, coupled with challenges in navigating complex healthcare systems, have been a major obstacle.
The solution lies in integrated care. Integrating, or combining, mental health, substance abuse, and primary care services, produces the best outcomes and proves to be the most effective approach to caring for people with multiple healthcare needs.
Integrating care across primary care, behavioral health (mental health and substance use disorder), and social support service providers, is a requirement of this project. The focus is to build a health care system that effectively and efficiently prevents, treats, and manages mental health, substance use disorder, and physical illnesses across multiple providers and sites of service, to avoid hospitalization and emergency department visits, and provide all NH citizens with the potential to live a healthier life.
SAMHSA provides a Framework to advance integrated health care
"Standard Framework for Levels of Integrated Healthcare" helps primary and behavioral healthcare provider organizations improve outcomes by helping them understand where they are on the integration continuum. This six-level framework can be used for planning; creating a common language to discuss integration, progress, and financing; supporting assessment and benchmarking efforts; explaining integration efforts to stakeholders; and clarifying differences in vision between two or more partnering organizations. For more information go to: http://www.integration.samhsa.gov/workforce/core-competencies-for-integrated-care