• Latest Behavioral Health Resources Now Available

    Practice Transformation Guidance in Updated Compendium and How-tos

    May 16, 2024, News Staff — With Mental Health Awareness Month under way, the Behavioral Health Integration Collaborative has updated its BHI Compendium, a one-stop reference for practices ready to move toward delivering integrated behavioral care.

    The revised 60-page Compendium — published cooperatively by the AAFP, the AMA and six other leading medical associations, and last issued in 2021 — arrives at a moment when one in five U.S. adults lives with a significant mental health or substance use disorder. At the same time, about four in 10 family physicians now collaborate with behavioral health professionals such as psychiatrists and psychologists, and BHI shows overall signs of growth.

    The 2024 Compendium includes guidance on child and adolescent patients, new case studies from practices and an expanded section on financial sustainability. Its practical content also features eight model-agnostic “building blocks” for offering integrated primary care, as well as forms that any practice can adopt to support BHI planning and implementation.

    Complementing the updated Compendium are new AMA how-to guides focusing on

    The Compendium’s 11 chapters (plus an appendix with updated resources and tools) focus on practice-transformation fundamentals, from definitions and background to how to begin integrating behavioral health care into an existing practice through maintaining financial viability.

    The detailed guides, meanwhile, lay out evidence-based best practices for identifying and caring for affected patients (as well as billing codes for screening, evaluation and treatment) and for developing effective BHI procedures.  

    The BHI Collaborative was formed in the fall of 2020 in response to concerns about a lack of patient access to behavioral and mental health care. In addition to the AAFP and the AMA, its members include the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the American College of Physicians, the American Osteopathic Association and the American Psychiatric Association.

    Paralleling the BHI Collaborative’s efforts, the Academy continues to advocate for regulatory and legislative policy that centers primary care in behavioral health care. Family physicians perform nearly 40% of all visits by patients seeking treatment for depression, anxiety, substance use disorder and other mental health concerns; almost a third of the care and a quarter of the prescriptions for serious mental illness are administered in primary care practices.