The demand for high-quality behavioral health services has never been greater. Integrating behavioral health care into primary care settings is one way to increase access; federal policies have encouraged this integration in recent years. However, compared to measures for other conditions, behavioral health quality measures have been difficult to implement and are frequently underreported.
This whitepaper explores challenges and opportunities for behavioral health care quality measurement within integrated behavioral health settings. The challenges we highlight are informed by conversations (during 2022 and 2023) facilitated by staff at the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) with stakeholders representing behavioral health clinicians and policy, payer and management experts, to identify quality measures appropriate for evaluating behavioral health care in integrated settings. NCQA presents solutions to improve the feasibility of reporting behavioral health quality measures in integrated settings, and discuss the implications of advances in quality measurement, including the transition to digital measures that leverage standardized electronic clinical data.
This work is supported by the California Health Care Foundation (CHCF), which works to ensure that people have access to the care they need, when they need it, at a price they can afford. Visit www.chcf.org to learn more.