System Factors Affect the Recognition and Management of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder by Primary Care Clinicians

RAND Corporation, Santa Monica, California 90407-2138, USA.
Medical care (Impact Factor: 3.23). 05/2009; 47(6):686-94. DOI: 10.1097/MLR.0b013e318190db5d
Source: PubMed


Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is common with an estimated prevalence of 8% in the general population and up to 17% in primary care patients. Yet, little is known about what determines primary care clinician's (PCC's) provision of PTSD care.
To describe PCC's reported recognition and management of PTSD and identify how system factors affect the likelihood of performing clinical actions with regard to patients with PTSD or "PTSD treatment proclivity."
Linked cross-sectional surveys of medical directors and PCCs.
Forty-six medical directors and 154 PCCs in community health centers (CHCs) within a practice-based research network in New York and New Jersey.
Two system factors (degree of integration between primary care and mental health services, and existence of linkages with other community, social, and legal services) as reported by medical directors, and PCC reports of self-confidence, perceived barriers, and PTSD treatment proclivity.
Surveys from 47 (of 58) medical directors (81% response rate) and 154 PCCs (86% response rate). PCCs from CHCs with better mental health integration reported greater confidence, fewer barriers, and higher PTSD treatment proclivity (all P < 0.05). The PCCs in CHCs with better community linkages reported greater confidence, fewer barriers, higher PTSD treatment proclivity, and lower proclivity to refer patients to mental health specialists or to use a "watch and wait" approach (all P < 0.05).
System factors play an important role in PCC PTSD management. Interventions are needed that restructure primary care practices by making mental health services more integrated and community linkages stronger.

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Available from: Ricardo Basurto-Davila, Mar 12, 2014
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    • "an established Practice‐Based Research Network (PBRN) that works with FQHCs that provide comprehensive community-based primary care and preventive care to the underserved [53]. The intervention was tailored for FQHC settings and underserved populations based upon input from clinical staff at FQHC study sites; further details can be found elsewhere [48] [54]. "
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