The realities of the pandemic are settling in among our membership and more of our conversation is turning to the long-term implications. We are concerned about our fellow healthcare providers, our patients and the economic realities that healthcare is facing along with the rest of the world. At the same time there is a sense that behavioral health integration is serving clinics well in responding to the crisis in a wholistic fashion that many non-integrated clinics are unable to do. Below is a summary of our conversations over the last few weeks.
As a service to members and to the general public we will be posting weekly updates of our conversations and resource sharing efforts here. Because these are taken from email conversations, examples provided may refer to single clinics or situations. We hope this inspires, encourages and educates everyone as to the work that integrated care team members are doing in near real-time to the evolving pandemic. To Join CFHA and support integrated care, use this link: click to join.
Questions CFHA Members Are Asking
- Members are looking for resources to help teens struggling with isolation from friends, the confirmation of schools closing, and dances, extracurriculars, and graduations being cancelled.
- Members are wondering if LCPCs can bill Medicaid for psychotherapy codes like LCWCs can.
- Members are interested in ways to pursue electronic patient-reported outcome measures that can be launched from the EHR and after completion makes its way back into the EHR.
- Members are looking to create culturally-sensitive wellness resources to help patients deal with trauma and build resistance.
- A member shared a new mobile app, COVID COACH to help manage distress in patients through tools that help with mindfulness, relaxation, self-monitoring symptoms, and staying connected. The link below details more about the app. https://www.ptsd.va.gov/appvid/mobile/COVID_coach_app.asp
- A member shared a story, coloring, and activity book to teach children about COVID-19, social distancing, and how to manage and cope with the strong emotions caused by the fear surrounding the pandemic. The link allows caregivers to download the ebook in English, Spanish, and Creole for free. http://fsustress.org/GermCrown/GermCrown.html
- A member shared the viewpoint that the provision of care across state lines is dependent on what state the patient is in and the severity of that state’s licensure regulations or their previous agreements with other states. The linked summary of telehealth in the pandemic goes more into depth about this issue. https://www.psychiatrictimes.com/coronavirus/expanding-telemental-health-response-covid-19-pandemic
Supporting Healthcare Professionals
- CFHA provides the following links with mental health resources: https://integratedcareconsultation.com/resources/mental-health-resources-for-providers-covid-19/ and https://www.integratedprimarycare.com/care-for-covid-19-warriers.
- Some members are creating task forces, crisis lines, and other programs to help support the mental health and wellbeing of frontline providers as they work grueling hours taking care of COVID-19 patients.
- Members have shared links to the National Stress and Crisis Hotline for healthcare professionals (https://ir.magellanhealth.com/news-releases/news-release-details/magellan-health-opens-free-crisis-hotline-support-first) and the Free Confidential Peer Support Line for physicians (www.physiciansupportine.com).
Thanks to Emma Serrano, CFHA intern, for her work in compiling these summaries.