Healing Through Relationships: The Impact of Collaborative Care on a Patient with Spina Bifida
Trends indicate that hospital use in the primary care sector is significantly higher for persons with coexisting physical and mental health conditions than for those with no mental health needs. The following case illustrates the utilization of a healthcare team as necessitated by a patient whose care was complicated by both her physical and her mental health needs. By recognizing these issues, the providers were able to address the concerns of the patient as well as the clinic and practitioners that were involved in her care. Meeting the needs of this patient meant an available healthcare team that collaborated with her about the best way to manage her care. Meeting the needs of the family physician meant the availability of a reliable referral source in the clinic to which she could refer, participate in, and get feedback from regarding mental health. The challenge to provide quality care with financial and time constraints is a huge issue in healthcare. Among the top priorities is cooperation among clinicians. The answer, in this case, was in collaborative care that served to balance the patient’s mental and physical needs as well as to decrease her multiple visits to the clinic. The format for care in this case was very much a “medical home,” a clinic that was flexible enough to schedule clinic visits with the team approach in mind.
KeywordsMental Health Mental Health Care Spina Bifida Collaborative Care Mental Health Provider
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