Yes, I’m Dr. Stacy Gideon in the clinical
health psychologist and the director of our behavioral health program and
integrated primary care. The behavior health involves not only mental health
issues, but substance abuse as well as chronic health conditions and what’s
unique about what we do here is we treat all of that often times in one visit
with the primary care doctor. Having behavioral health and primary care really benefits the patients. They’re able to get comprehensive care
oftentimes in one visit and we’re able to communicate because we share an
electronic health record and are able to discuss the patient’s right at their
point of visit. So, some of things I may get called on to see patients for are
things like sleep issues or difficulty with weight loss these are things that
we see oftentimes in primary care and are really difficult to control and a
lot of people need help with motivation and strategies so that they can improve
their overall health. With our new renovations here at
MidMichigan we’ve been able to expand our behavioral health department from
one mental health provider who does traditional counseling to three on-site, and we’ve been able to add substance abuse counseling, which we weren’t able
to do before. So, again we feel like we can provide comprehensive care here at
MidMichigan. So most primary care patients are referred for a behavioral
health consult, while they’re here when they’re
identified by their primary care provider thinking they could benefit
from an intervention. There are patients so who request i,t they really want
someone to talk to they’ve had a stressor, they’re really
struggling with weight loss and they need some help, and they’re unlikely to
go to a specialty mental health provider. Over 50% of the visits to primary care
for chronic health conditions things like chronic pain, diabetes, obesity
things like that the behavioral health can help with. Chronic pain has been an
epidemic and a really tough disorder to treat and so we’re able to provide
different resources to help folks manage that outside of medication, really. So, if
patients wanted to receive integrated primary care behavioral health services,
they can simply call our direct line and ask for that. They do not have to be our
patients to get traditional counseling and they call one line and we take care
of everything for them. Patients are comforted by the fact that the
behavioral health provider and the primary care doctor are speaking while they’re there at the visit to provide on-demand
and real-time interventions and strategies so they’re not having to wait
and wonder if this person’s communicated with that person and so they’re able to
get answers and suggestions and really focus on functioning and improving their
health.

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