Improving Behavioral Health for Older Adults in Oregon

August 17, 2016   |  Tags: Blog   |  Tags: Behavioral Health Integration , Screening , HealthInsight Oregon , Training , Medicare
Rebecca Fuller, MA, LPC

HealthInsight, the regional Medicare Quality Innovation Network-Quality Improvement Organization (QIN-QIO) for Oregon, Nevada, New Mexico and Utah, is addressing older adult behavioral health through a four-year initiative funded by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). HealthInsight joins five other QIN-QIOs across the country that are leading similar initiatives in their regions.

Depression and alcohol misuse are common in the Medicare population, impacting the well-being of many older adults in Oregon. Both put individuals at greater risk for hospitalization and complicate the treatment of other chronic conditions. Yet behavioral health problems are often under-identified in primary care, where most treatment for depression begins for this age group.

As a result, roughly two-thirds of older people with a behavioral health disorder do not receive treatment. Untreated depression has a significant effect on adherence to treatment and on health outcomes—for example, patients with depression may be less likely to fill their medications as recommended.

In Oregon, the initiative could affect more than 141,000 Medicare beneficiaries.

Our aim: help communities build the connections to close gaps in care for this vulnerable population.

HealthInsight Oregon is engaging primary care practitioners and other health care partners in community-focused approaches to increase primary care screening and referral for depression and alcohol use disorder.

To that end, HealthInsight is offering a four-part webinar series to help clinics implement or improve behavioral health screening processes. These sessions are offered without charge to providers.

Module 1: Utilizing Screening tools to Improve Identification of Depression and Alcohol Misuse
August 24, 2016
11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. PT

Module 2: The ABCs of Scoring and Interpreting Behavioral Health Screens
August 31, 2016
11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. PT

Module 3: Monitoring Patients to Symptom Remission
September 7, 2016
11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. PT

Module 4: Behavioral Health Referrals and Community Resources
September 14, 2016
11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. PT

Each 60-minute module is designed to help clinics thrive as they strive to improve behavioral health for their patients. You will be able to ask questions, share comments and find out about best practices and processes for integrating behavioral health screenings in your office visits.

Click here to register online


Rebecca Fuller, MA, LPC is Lead Behavioral Health Project Coordinator for HealthInsight Oregon. Rebecca has over 20 years of experience in healthcare with a specialization in behavioral health. She is a Licensed Professional Counselor in the State of Oregon. She currently serves on the board of Directors for NAMI Oregon. She has experience in both physical and behavioral healthcare settings (QI/UR).  As a lead project coordinator at HealthInsight Oregon she manages one of the company’s Medicare behavioral health Quality Improvement Projects. Before joining HealthInsight Ms. Fuller worked closely with OHA on the Adult Mental Health Initiative (AMHI) in her role as the lead enhanced needs care coordinator for FamilyCare CCO. In that role, she served as the CCO’s key AMHI contact for multiple stakeholders including providers, consumers, state and county agencies. Other experience specific to the CCO was involvement in behavioral health integration alternative payment methodology, integration of physical and behavioral healthcare services, development of behavioral health care home/PCPCH projects, person centered planning and work related to the OHA metrics.  During her career Rebecca has become well versed in Medicaid and Medicare benefits/funding/alternative payment and service delivery system design. She has clinical expertise and experience in the mental health system statewide.