Integrating primary health care and mental health services--a successful rural linkage.
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Integrating primary health care and mental health services--a successful rural linkage.

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  • English

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    • Alternative Title:
      Public Health Rep
    • Description:
      The local delivery of human services is currently receiving national emphasis. The expectation is that community-based services shall be provided with a minimum of duplication and with maximum efficiency, achieved partly by interdisciplinary and interorganizational cooperation. This emphasis was appropriately facilitated in the mid-1970s through the availability of the Mental Health Initiative grants. The grants, initiated by the Bureau of Community Health Services in conjunction with the National Institute of Mental Health, Public Health Service, promoted the increased availability of mental health services through formal linkages between community mental health centers and primary health care programs. One such successful linkage was between a small primary health care center and a nonfederally funded, multicounty, mental health center in northwest Illinois. Initiated in September 1980, the services of the linkage project included direct clinical mental health services delivered at the primary health care center site, consultation and education activities, and the coordination of interagency services. The project patients differed from the general clients of the mental health center in demographic characteristics, source of referral, and diagnoses. The key elements in successful linkages and the achievement of goals are analyzed. The experience of the linkage project is relevant to the 1980s. The project was prematurely ended after 14 months. Reduction in Federal funds severely cut support for the primary health care center, and the depressed local economy could not match the withdrawn Federal funds.
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