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Same-Day Integrated Mental Health Care and PTSD Diagnosis and Treatment Among VHA Primary Care Patients With Positive PTSD Screens.

Bohnert KM, Sripada RK, Mach J, McCarthy JF. Same-Day Integrated Mental Health Care and PTSD Diagnosis and Treatment Among VHA Primary Care Patients With Positive PTSD Screens. Psychiatric services (Washington, D.C.). 2016 Jan 1; 67(1):94-100.

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OBJECTIVE: The study examined whether same-day integrated mental health services are associated with increased diagnosis and treatment initiation among primary care patients with positive posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) screens. METHODS: Data were from a national sample of Veterans Health Administration (VHA) primary care patients with a positive PTSD screen (N = 21,427). Patients were assessed for PTSD diagnosis and treatment initiation on the screening day and = 7 days, = 12 weeks, = 6 months, and = 1 year after screening positive. The service setting on screening day was categorized as primary care only, same-day primary care-mental health integration (PC-MHI), or same-day specialty mental health care. Multivariable generalized estimating equations logistic regression was used to estimate associations between category of screening day services and diagnosis and treatment initiation, with adjustment for demographic characteristics, prior psychiatric diagnoses, prior VHA service utilization, and PTSD screen score. RESULTS: Of the 21,427 patients with positive PTSD screens, 10,809 (50.4%) received a diagnosis within one year of screening positive. Same-day PC-MHI services were associated with greater odds of PTSD diagnosis, both on the same day as (odds ratio [OR] = 2.23) and one year (OR = 1.67) after screening positive compared with primary care-only services (p < .001). Among those who received a diagnosis on the same day as their positive screen, same-day PC-MHI services were associated with increased odds of initiating PTSD treatment (OR = 3.39) within 12 weeks of diagnosis, compared with primary care only (p < .001). CONCLUSIONS: Same-day integrated mental health services may help facilitate PTSD diagnosis and treatment initiation after a positive screen.

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