Supporting Mental Health across the Continuum of Care

An estimated 26 percent of Americans age 18 and older are living with a mental health disorder in any given year, and 46 percent will have a mental health disorder over the course of their lifetime. Those numbers can be even higher for members of our military community, which makes getting mental health right especially important for our service members and their families.

Cerner is the only major EHR vendor that is embracing behavioral health across the continuum of acute, residential, outpatient and community. The company is delivering healthcare IT solutions that will support the unique workflows and regulatory needs of mental health facilities, such as group therapy, state reporting and special privacy needs.

Read the below excerpt from Cerner’s recent blog post “Treating the Whole Person” to learn more or check out the whole thing here.

People are complex. There are environmental, genetic, physical, social and mental factors that affect our health. A clinician’s ability to drive quality is impeded when we dissect the head from the heart in our single focus on physical health. Given nearly half of the population will experience a mental illness during their lifetime, everyone is impacted by mental health challenges either directly or as a caregiver, family member, friend, etc. Absent appropriate and timely care, these factors become barriers to true health for the consumer and ultimately the community.

There has historically been such a stigma around mental illness that people often don’t receive adequate, or any, care. Tragically, jails have far too often become the de facto point of care. The shift to pay for performance and the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act have helped bring the state of mental health care out of the shadows and into the conversations for many health systems. Modern Healthcare’s Virgil Dickson reported that 5 percent of the Medicaid population accounted for almost half of the expenditures. While, less than 15 percent of Medicaid-only patients had mental health conditions, they account for half of the high-expenditure group. The health care industry has contributed to the stigma by separating mental health from physical health with little integration. If we are going to measure our health care system on true outcomes, you can’t achieve holistic health in the absence of optimizing an individual’s mental well-being. As the health care industry embraces the consumer as the center of care, mental health information needs to be integrated to allow clinicians to have a complete understanding when making decisions with their patient. Leaders are already showing success in curbing unnecessary ED visits and readmissions while improving care by integrating behavioral health clinicians in their environments.

Visit Cerner’s website to read the full blog post.