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The Role of Behavioral Medicine in Integrated Healthcare

Abstract

This chapter reviews evidence from randomized controlled trials that demonstrate the importance of behavioral interventions for improving lifestyle behaviors and preventing and treating chronic diseases. Taking a lifespan approach, we review trials including participants ranging from children to elderly adults, and show that critical components of effective interventions include targeting self-regulation and self-efficacy through strategies such as self-monitoring, receiving feedback, developing action plans, and utilizing effective goal setting strategies. Although limited research exists on comparing the effectiveness of integrating behavioral health experts into the integrated care team, the effects of traditional randomized trials show the consistent effectiveness of implementing behavioral interventions with a high fidelity of delivery. Furthermore, there is a growing literature that supports the cost-effectiveness of behavioral interventions on reducing hospital utilization and medication usage. Thus, the field of behavioral medicine has the potential to play a fundamental role in reducing healthcare utilization and costs by improving lifestyle habits that have been related to the prevention of chronic diseases.

Keywords

  • Healthcare
  • Behavioral interventions
  • Self-regulation
  • Motivational interventions
  • Life span

This research was supported in part by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (R01HD072153).

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Correspondence to Dawn K. Wilson .

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Wilson, D.K., Sweeney, A.M. (2018). The Role of Behavioral Medicine in Integrated Healthcare. In: Duckworth, M., O'Donohue, W. (eds) Behavioral Medicine and Integrated Care. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-93003-9_2

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