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Preventative Behavioral Health Outreach and COVID-19 Positive Patients: Lessons Learned 

05-07-2021 14:59

Primary care settings offer a rich opportunity to identify and treat mental and behavioral health and substance use concerns, especially in the context of the current COVID-19 pandemic. Research suggests that this pandemic has resulted in increased mental health concerns including depression, anxiety, and posttraumatic stress. A recent review of the psychological impact of quarantine highlighted the association between stigma and infectious disease and its impact on avoiding seeking treatment. This presentation will review an initiative developed by the integrated behavioral health team at a family medicine clinic in a midwestern academic medical center to reach out to patients who tested positive for COVID-19. The purpose of this initiative was to assess patients' behavioral health needs following testing positive for the virus and provide emotional support accordingly. The discussion will highlight demographic and racial disparities in those who tested positive compared to the overall clinic population, and the relationship between testing positive for an infectious disease and anxiety, depression, posttraumatic stress, and stigma. Additionally, the presentation will focus on implications and practical considerations for replicating the initiative and recommendations based on lessons learned during implementation.

Author(s):Krithika Malhotra, Araba Koufie, Alex Laffer, & Lindsey Jenkins
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Uploaded - 05-07-2021