Where is Behavioral Health Integration Occurring? Mapping National Co-location Trends Using National Provider Identifier Data

Authors: Erica Richman, PhD, MSW | Brianna Lombardi, PhD, MSW | Lisa de Saxe Zerden, PhD, MSW | Randy Randolph, MRP

Topics: Behavioral Health, Integration and Collaboration, Primary Care

Research Center: Behavioral Health Workforce Research Center

November 1, 2018

Because 60–80% of all primary care visits include a behavioral health component, providing integrated services in primary care is now considered a priority for health systems as they strive to meet patient needs and improve population health. Integrated care typically involves behavioral healthcare workers such as social workers and psychologists working on teams with primary care providers to help address behavioral health and social determinants of health alongside physical health. Co-location, where behavioral and physical health components of care are housed in the same physical space, is one of the key elements of integration.

This report examines the rate of co-location between primary care physicians (PCPs) and social workers/psychologists to (1) identify the percent of PCPs co-located with social workers/psychologists in the US; (2) assess if co-location rates vary by state, region, rurality, or practice size; and (3) determine if co-location rates vary by PCP specialty.

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