After Successful Pilot, Mercy Health Physicians Adds Behavioral Health Consultants to More Physician Practices to Treat Patients Mind, Body and Spirit

Mercy Health - Cincinnati, which provides advanced, quality care with compassion in your neighborhood through its care network, announces that Mercy Health Physicians is adding to the number of primary care physician practices also featuring a behavioral health consultant as part of the care team available to patients. This follows a successful, six-month pilot that included two behavioral health consultants available to patients of three Mercy Health primary care physician practices.

Seven different Mercy Health Physician primary care offices now have one of four behavioral health consultants available to address any behavioral health issue that prevents patients from achieving their self-management goals and improving their health. Behavioral health consultants are doctoral-level psychologists who can treat patients suffering from mental health concerns such as depression and anxiety and also consult on medical treatment for chronic illnesses such as diabetes, COPD, pain and sleep disorders, among others.

“Some studies suggest that as many as 50% of primary care patients experience a behavioral health concern at some point. We know that mind, body and spirit are connected to our overall well-being and we started this program because it was the right thing to do for our patients,” said Randy Curnow, MD, President, Mercy Health Physicians. “Many patients find they need to meet with a behavioral health consultant just a few times to ease or successfully address a particular concern.”

The doctors involved in the program report that more of their patients follow through on behavioral health referrals and because the behavioral health consultants are part of the doctor’s practice, they can both access the patients’ electronic medical records and confer on treatment plans to ensure a consistent approach and follow up.

Satisfaction among the primary care providers and their staff members is up, too.

“Our teams tell us they value having an expert in human behavior on their team,” said Curnow.  

Specialists with Mercy Health’s Behavioral Health Institute, which has specialized mental health treatment centers in Mercy Health hospitals in Ohio and Kentucky, designed the care model that Mercy Health Physicians is using in these primary care practices.

Practices with behavioral health consultants include the following Mercy Health primary care locations:
• Dent Crossing Family Medicine – accepting new patients
• Eastgate Family Medicine – accepting new patients
• Forest Hills Family Medicine – accepting new patients
• Kenwood Internal Medicine – accepting new patients
• Springdale Family Medicine
• Westside Internal Medicine – accepting new patients
• Wyoming Primary Care

This deployment of in-practice behavioral health consultants provides expands access to behavioral services to more than 50,000 patients. Mercy Health is planning to expand the number of psychologists in its practices in 2016. 

To find a Mercy Health physician in your neighborhood, or to learn about the services provided at Mercy Health, please visit e-mercy.com/physicians.asp or call 513-981-2222.

Mercy Health - Cincinnati makes advanced, compassionate, quality healthcare easy to help you be well in mind, body and spirit. Mercy Health - Cincinnati has been serving Greater Cincinnati for more than 160 years. Mercy Health – Cincinnati provides an integrated network of leading physicians, compassionate caregivers, comprehensive services and exceptional care at more than 180 locations across the region. The Mercy Health - Cincinnati network of care includes five award-winning hospitals, senior living communities, primary care and specialty physician practices, outpatient centers, social service agencies, fitness centers and a variety of outreach programs. Mercy Health - Cincinnati hospitals have earned national Truven Health Analytics’ 100 Top Hospitals honors more times than all other Cincinnati hospitals combined, placing them among the best hospitals in the nation. Truven has also named Mercy Health- Cincinnati as one of the nation’s Top 15 health systems three years in a row. Mercy Health - Cincinnati is the only health system in Cincinnati to earn this honor. Mercy Health - Cincinnati is part of Mercy Health, formerly Catholic Health Partners, the largest health system in Ohio and fourth largest employer in the state. To learn more visit, e-mercy.com and engage in the conversation via Mercy Health - Cincinnati’s social media channels (@mercy_health on Twitter and Mercy Health on Facebook).