Measurement-Based Care in Psychiatric Practice: A Policy Framework for Implementation

Columbia University, Department of Psychiatry, New York, NY 10032, USA.
The Journal of Clinical Psychiatry (Impact Factor: 5.5). 08/2011; 72(8):1136-43. DOI: 10.4088/JCP.10r06282whi
Source: PubMed


This article describes the need for measurement-based care (MBC) in psychiatric practice and defines a policy framework for implementation. Although measurement in psychiatric treatment is not new, it is not standard clinical practice. Thus a gap exists between research and practice outcomes. The current standards of psychiatric clinical care are reviewed and illustrated by a case example, along with MBC improvements. Measurement-based care is defined for clinical practice along with limitations and recommendations. This article provides a policy top 10 list for implementing MBC into standard practice, including establishing clear expectations and guidelines, fostering practice-based implementation capacities, altering financial incentives, helping practicing doctors adapt to MBC, developing and expanding the MBC science base, and engaging consumers and their families. Measurement-based care as the standard of care could transform psychiatric practice, move psychiatry into the mainstream of medicine, and improve the quality of care for patients with psychiatric illness.

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    • "While the goal is to first contact Veterans with major mental disorders including bipolar disorder, VA leaders have discussed the expansion of Re-Engage to other Veterans with major depression, PTSD, or other mental disorder diagnoses, once the national rollout has been fully implemented. These initiatives are crucial steps toward the promotion of measurement-based care and ultimately, improved quality and outcomes for persons with mental disorders [6] [7]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Objectives. Persons with mental disorders experience functional impairments and premature mortality. Limited continuity of care may contribute to disparities in this group. We describe the replication of an evidence-based outreach program (Re-Engage) to reconnect Veterans with mental disorders into care who have dropped out of services. Methods. Using the Enhanced Replicating Effective Programs framework, population-based registries were used to identify Veterans lost-to-care, and providers used this information to determine Veteran disposition and need for care. Providers recorded Veteran preferences, health status, and care utilization, and formative process data was collected to document implementation efforts. Results. Among Veterans who dropped out of care (n = 126), the mean age was 49 years, 10% were women, and 29% were African-American. Providers determined that 39% of Veterans identified for re-engagement were deceased, hospitalized, or ineligible for care. Of the remaining 68 Veterans, outreach efforts resulted in contact with 20, with 7 returning to care. Providers averaged 14.2 hours over 4 months conducting re-engagement services and reported that gaining facility leadership support and having service agreements for referrals were essential for program implementation. Conclusions. Population-level, panel management strategies to re-engage Veterans with mental disorders are potentially feasible if practices are identified to facilitate national rollout.
    Depression research and treatment 09/2012; 2012:325249. DOI:10.1155/2012/325249
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    ABSTRACT: This report summarizes a four-year evaluation of mental health services provided by the Veterans Administration (VA) for veterans with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, major depression, and substance use disorders. The population of veterans with the diagnoses included in the study comprises a large and growing number of veterans with severe and complex general medical and mental disorders and accounts for a disproportionately large proportion of utilization and costs for the VA. Study veterans represented 15.4 percent of all veterans who used VA services in 2007 but accounted for 32.9 percent of the costs due to higher utilization of inpatient and outpatient services. Across the country, VA facilities report substantial capacity for treating seriously mentally ill veterans. Although capacity has increased since the implementation of the Mental Health Strategic Plan in 2005, important gaps remain. The proportion of veterans receiving recommended care varies widely, and there is variation in many of the performance indicators assessed with regard to specific populations, services, and locations. In most instances, VA care performance is as good as or better than that reported by other groups or shown by direct comparisons with other systems of care, but the level often does not meet implicit VA expectations. Most performance indicators did not show substantial improvement from FY 2004 through FY 2007, but recent structural enhancements and increased availability of services may yield improvements in the future, and the number of veterans in the study cohorts who were served during the study period increased annually. Veterans' perceptions of VA services were favorable, although they did not perceive significant improvement in their conditions. Opportunities for further investigation are identified, along with specific problem areas and strategies for improving performance and methods to enhance capacity for quality monitoring and improvement.
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    ABSTRACT: This article outlines the role of measurement-based care in the management of antidepressant treatment for patients with unipolar depression. Using measurement-based care, clinicians and researchers have the opportunity to optimize individual treatment and obtain maximum antidepressant treatment response. Measurement-based care breaks down to several simple components: antidepressant dosage, depressive symptom severity, medication tolerability, adherence to treatment, and safety. Quick and easy-to-use, empirically validated assessments are available to monitor these areas of treatment. Utilizing measurement-based care has several steps-screening and antidepressant selection based upon treatment history, followed by assessment-based medication management and ongoing care. Electronic measurement-based care systems have been developed and implemented, further reducing the burden on patients and clinicians. As more treatment providers adopt electronic health care management systems, compatible measurement-based care antidepressant treatment delivery and monitoring systems may become increasingly utilized.
    Current Psychiatry Reports 09/2011; 13(6):446-58. DOI:10.1007/s11920-011-0237-8 · 3.24 Impact Factor
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