Mental Health: Continuum of Care Thesis

Excerpt from Thesis :

However, integrated continuum of care networks presents a viable solution to mental health care delivery that properly allocates resources a collaborative and cooperative service delivery system.

Needed, according to Mohatt (1997) is "vertical integration' in the "approaches to managed care" in networking a group of healthcare providers, at various levels of primary care and behavioral health, to form an integrated service network. They seek to develop, via cooperation, a coordinated, consumer focused, seamless continuum of care designed to improve access and availability through efficiencies gained by the elimination of redundant services or systems."

Mohatt reports just such as system being in existence and specifically the Laurel Health System in northeastern Pennsylvania "founded in 1989 with the merger of five not-for-profit organizations..." This network spans the human service gamut inclusive of primary care, nursing homes, senior housing, ambulance service, and hospital." (1997) Mohatt reports another example stating:

recent example of such a horizontal integration is the 1994 formation of Northpointe Behavioral Healthcare Systems in Michigan's sparsely populated Upper Peninsula. It was formed as a proactive response to the evolving managed care environment in public sector mental health. Northpointe was established through the consolidation of two community mental health programs serving three rural counties. The consolidation allowed the CMHCs to centralize executive administration, management information, fiscal management, and human resources for the new entity which employs more than 300 people and serves more than 3,500 consumers." (1997)

Yager (1996) writes that in considering the question of whether full continuum of care services yield better results, that "Current thinking often assumes that mental health systems providing full continuum of care services is the least restrictive environments, benefit patients more..." And make better use of resources available.

DISCUSSION & CONCLUSION

The only method that ensures and enables the delivery of mental health care services is one that that properly utilizes the resources present to deliver the services that are possible to be delivered to the target population and as health care resources and professionals become spread thinner in the health care services sector and as the population ever-expands and becomes increasingly diverse with growing differential needs in mental health care services, proper allocation of resources increases in importance.

Bibliography

Behar, Lenore B., Macbeth, Gary, and Holland, Joan M. (1993) Distribution and Costs of Mental Health Services Within a System of Care for Children and Adolescents. Administration and Policy in Mental Health and Mental Health Services Research. Vol. 20, No. 4, March 1993. Abstract online available at Springerlink online: http://www.springerlink.com/content/q73873hn78112345/

Hamner, Karl M., Lambert, E. Warren, and Bickman, Leonard (1996) Children's Mental Health in a Continuum of Care: Clinical Outcomes at 18 Months for the Fort Bragg Demonstration. ERIC Digest. 28 Feb 1996. Online available at http://eric.ed.gov/ERICWebPortal/custom/portlets/recordDetails/detailmini.jsp?_nfpb=true&_&ERICExtSearch_SearchValue_0=ED460476&ERICExtSearch_SearchType_0=no&accno=ED460476

Yager, J. (1996) Do Full Continuum of Care Services Yield Better Results? Am Psychol 1996 July. Journal Watch. Online available at http://psychiatry.jwatch.org/cgi/content/citation/1996/1001/14

Mohatt, Dennis F. (1997) Access To Mental Health Services In Frontier America

Letter to the Field No. 4. Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education. 4 Nov 1997. Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services. Online available at http://www.wiche.edu/Mentalhealth/Frontier/letter4.asp

Kiser, Laurel J., Lefkovitz, Paul M. And Kennedy, Lawrence L. (2001) The Integrated Behavioral Health Continuum. Theory and Practice. American Psychiatric Publishing Inc. Arlington, VA.

Mental Health: Continuum of Care

Sources Used in Document:

Bibliography

Behar, Lenore B., Macbeth, Gary, and Holland, Joan M. (1993) Distribution and Costs of Mental Health Services Within a System of Care for Children and Adolescents. Administration and Policy in Mental Health and Mental Health Services Research. Vol. 20, No. 4, March 1993. Abstract online available at Springerlink online: http://www.springerlink.com/content/q73873hn78112345/

Hamner, Karl M., Lambert, E. Warren, and Bickman, Leonard (1996) Children's Mental Health in a Continuum of Care: Clinical Outcomes at 18 Months for the Fort Bragg Demonstration. ERIC Digest. 28 Feb 1996. Online available at http://eric.ed.gov/ERICWebPortal/custom/portlets/recordDetails/detailmini.jsp?_nfpb=true&_&ERICExtSearch_SearchValue_0=ED460476&ERICExtSearch_SearchType_0=no&accno=ED460476

Yager, J. (1996) Do Full Continuum of Care Services Yield Better Results? Am Psychol 1996 July. Journal Watch. Online available at http://psychiatry.jwatch.org/cgi/content/citation/1996/1001/14

Mohatt, Dennis F. (1997) Access To Mental Health Services In Frontier America

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