Integrated care, wherein physical and behavioral health needs are treated collaboratively, has resulted in improved patient-level outcomes and has increased screening and treatment of behavioral health disorders within primary care settings by reducing barriers like stigma, access, and accessibility. Despite evidence indicating that behavioral health providers are increasingly likely to be working in integrated primary care settings as part of the interprofessional teams, current national estimates of the percentage of co-located providers is unknown. Additionally, these models may be less prominent in rural and underserved areas and more likely to occur near academic health centers, indicating unequal access to this model of care.
To better understand the rate of co-location of primary care and behavioral health providers working in integrated primary care settings, researchers will use the CMS National Plan and Provider Enumeration System (NPPES) downloadable file, a national and publicly available data source, and conduct geo-spatial analysis to report the rate of physical co-location between primary care providers and social workers/psychologists.
This project will be co-led by the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill (UNC) and the BHWRC at the University of Michigan.