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Improving Outcomes of Care for HRSA-Funded Health Center Patients Who Have Mental Health Conditions and Substance Use Disorders.

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The rising prevalence of mental health conditions and substance use disorders (MH/SUD) underscores the important role of health centers (HCs) in caring for low-income and uninsured MH/SUD patients. This study used the 2014 Health Center Patient Survey and 2014 Uniform Data System to determine the independent association between delivery of MH/SUD integration and related interventions to patients that reported a MH/SUD condition (n=2714) with the number of HC visits, emergency department (ED) visits, and hospitalizations last year. Results showed that health education was associated with fewer predicted ED visits (1.8 vs. 2.3) and lower likelihood of hospitalizations (16% vs. 24%) among MH patients. Medical enabling services was associated with lower rates of ED visits (0.3 vs.1.9) and hospitalizations (< 1% vs. 13%) among SUD patients. The results indicate the utility of integration and related intervention services in primary care settings to improve service use and reduce ED and hospitalization among MH/SUD patients.

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