Skip to Main Content

News

Integrated care initiative helps providers support patients with underlying mental health conditions

Date: 06/17/19

Baton Rouge, LA (June 17, 2019) – Louisiana Healthcare Connections announced today a new initiative that will aim to improve access to behavioral health care for members of Louisiana Healthcare Connections, including Medicaid beneficiaries. Leveraging Quartet’s technology and services, Louisiana Healthcare Connections will support behavioral health and primary care providers at the local level to help ensure those with behavioral health conditions get the right care at the right time.

This effort is a key element in Louisiana Healthcare Connections’ innovative strategy to increase access to quality, value-based behavioral health care for its 450,000 members across the state. The Healthy Louisiana Medicaid health plan will work with Quartet to help primary care physicians identify patients with underlying mental health conditions, and to provide those physicians with the data and tools necessary to seamlessly refer patients to a qualified network of mental health providers.

The HIPAA-compliant platform, available to Louisiana Healthcare Connections’ provider network at no cost, will empower primary care and behavioral health providers to form virtual care teams, where treatment progress can be shared in real-time. Each patient referred by a Louisiana Healthcare Connections’ provider will be matched with a clinically appropriate and carefully vetted behavioral health professional within their network. Furthermore, this effort will enable physicians to quickly connect and consult with psychiatrists to validate treatment plans, or receive advice on patients with medication needs.

“As a health plan, we have long recognized the correlation between physical and behavioral health, and the importance of ensuring access to holistic, integrated care for improved outcomes,” says Kendra Case, Chief Operating Officer of Louisiana Healthcare Connections. “By partnering with Quartet, we are making this high level of quality care more readily available to our members, and empowering our physical and behavioral health providers with the tools and data they need to help their patients – our members – achieve better health.”

In Louisiana, less than 40 percent of adults living with mental health conditions receive any form of treatment.[1] However, research shows that connecting mental and physical health care improves overall patient health.[2] This evidence-based approach will improve speed-to-care, with members receiving behavioral health services within a matter of days rather than months.

“We know that mental health is a central part of human health,” said David Wennberg, MD, MPH, CEO at Quartet. “We are proud to partner with Louisiana Healthcare Connections as they lead the way to help ensure members - including those whose behavioral health conditions have historically been unaddressed - receive an elevated level of comprehensive care.”

Quartet will begin rolling out its technology and services to Louisiana Healthcare Connections’ network of providers in the New Orleans area in early summer 2019 before expanding statewide. Physicians will be contacted by Quartet with more information on how to join the Quartet community.

 

 

[1] Rtor.org. Mental Health Resources in Louisiana, 2018, www.rtor.org/mental-health-louisiana/. Accessed 7, May 2019.

[2] Reiss-Brennan et al. (2016) Association of team-based care with health care quality, utilization, and cost. JAMA, 16(8):826-834. Retrieved April 2019, from https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/fullarticle/2545685