AHRQ’s Innovations Exchange focuses on mental health care in rural settings

December 13, 2013

The latest issue of the AHRQ Health Care Innovations Exchange features three innovation profiles describing programs that increased access and improved mental health care for individuals living in rural areas. One of the featured profiles describes a program at the University of Virginia Health System in Charlottesville, in which psychiatric fellows and residents use videoconferencing to serve children and adults with mental illness who live in rural parts of the state. Children gain access to this care by visiting any of three local mental health centers (known as community service boards), whereas adults visit local primary care and geriatric clinics. To facilitate the provision of care, the health system’s Center for Telehealth offers technical support and other tools and services to participating mental health centers and clinics. The program has enabled thousands of patients with mental illness to receive psychiatric care who otherwise likely would not have had access to such care. The Innovations Exchange includes more than 825 searchable innovations, including more innovation profiles and tools related to mental health care in rural settings, and 1,525 QualityTools.

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