At NeuroFlow, we’re all about evidence-based care that gets results — for patients as well as providers. But what does that mean exactly when it comes to measuring outcomes in behavioral health?
To answer this difficult question we’re going ‘under the hood’ of NeuroFlow’s technology to highlight the impact integrated care has on individual well-being and showcase some of the interesting ways our platform is being used by health systems, government agencies, and payors.
To kick off this “Data Dive” series, we’re taking a look at the impact of Psychiatric Collaborative Care (CoCM), the gold standard of behavioral health integration (BHI) by over 90 randomized trials. Having implemented the model across a wide variety of organizations, we’ve seen time and again the significant real-world impact of our high-touch, high-tech approach to collaborative care.
What is Collaborative Care?
CoCM isn’t just another term for holistic care. It’s a specific evidence-based integrated care model developed by the University of Washington AIMS Center to improve patient outcomes by treating a range of mental health conditions that require regular follow-ups — like depression, anxiety, and substance use disorder — as part of a patient’s overall health.
Using standardized outcomes measures that demonstrate behavioral health symptom improvement, its effectiveness has been measured in a range of populations and use cases. One well-known example is the IMPACT study, the results of which were published in 2002, making it the first randomized trial for depression treatment. The study demonstrated that CoCM in primary care more than doubled the effectiveness of depression treatment for older adults. At 12 months, about 50% of the patients receiving CoCM achieved response (50% or greater reduction in depressive symptoms), compared with only 19% response rate of those in usual care.
In this data dive, NeuroFlow looked specifically at the PHQ-9 depression scale to measure the impact of CoCM on patient outcomes using response and remission metrics.
How We Measure Collaborative Care Outcomes
At NeuroFlow, one way we measure the effectiveness of the CoCM in patient populations using response and remission metrics. A quick breakdown of those terms:
- Response. Does a registered user with a clinical PHQ-9 or clinical GAD-7 score of 10 or higher have at least a 50% reduction within 4-8 months?
- Remission. Does a registered user with a clinical PHQ-9 or clinical GAD-7 score of 10 or higher have a subsequent PHQ or GAD score of under 5 within 4-8 months?
Using these metrics, we evaluated the outcomes of more than one thousand patients who were enrolled in CoCM through NeuroFlow. The following data highlights NeuroFlow users who are: actively enrolled in CoCM or are identified as being in the Relapse Prevention Program, or graduated from CoCM after reaching a 50% reduction in their initial score.
Technology Enhances Manual Collaborative Care Models
NeuroFlow offers a technology enhanced solution to traditional programs that are reliant on people-heavy workflows that are challenging to maintain. The impact of NeuroFlow’s technology on implementation of CoCM is clear when we evaluate response and remission rates for depression.
For users enrolled in technology enhanced CoCM, 60% reached response within 4-8 months, and 44% achieved remission within 4-8 months of the patients’ first clinical assessment. These clinically significant outcomes clearly demonstrated the impact of technology augmented CoCM.
The Effectiveness of Collaborative Care & Why it Matters
CoCM is the gold standard for holistic integrated behavioral health. But standing up these programs requires up-front resources and time, especially within health care systems without existing behavioral health infrastructure. Despite the upfront effort, CoCM creates greater efficiencies in the long-term by making it easier to deliver the right level of care to patients and reducing the cost of care as a result.
One of the major benefits of implementing technology enhanced BHI at scale, across a population, is the ability to risk stratify, says Pain and Spine Specialists (PASS) Pain Management Specialist Sudhir Rao, M.D. “With NeuroFlow, we realized that not only can we have patient’s mental health data readily accessible, but then we can risk-stratify our population and better understand our patients’ varying risk levels, which allows us to proactively adjust treatment plans where necessary.”
This ability to assess and stratify patient populations based on real-time response rates allows providers to deliver more timely interventions for improved patient outcomes at lower costs. Milliman recently published projections showing that providers can expect a cost savings of 9-17% with “effective integration of physical and mental health programs,” specifically evidence-based CoCM programs.
CoCM works. It can help bridge the gap between behavioral and physical health treatment that millions of Americans lack, while also bolstering existing health care systems for better outcomes at a lower cost to patients and providers. Learn more about the outcomes NeuroFlow can help your organization achieve.
This is the first installment of a new data-driven blog series examining the latest trends in behavioral health. Upcoming posts will explore the most popular behavioral health topics on NeuroFlow and NeuroFlow usage trends among different age demographics. Stay tuned!