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Integrating Mental Health and Primary Care
HealthLeaders Media

Ten years ago, Cambridge Health Alliance, an integrated safety-net health system and teaching hospital for Harvard and Tufts medical schools, based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, believed the best way it could help its primary care providers with their patients’ mental health issues was by colocating a mental health provider inside CHA’s primary care practices.

The mental health providers, either psychologists or licensed clinical social workers, spent 10%–20% of their time among CHA’s 15 primary care offices. With this shared resource across the practices, CHA’s primary doctors had someone who could take care of their patients’ mental health needs.