Improving Behavioral Health Coordination and Care by Strengthening Community Collaborations


Jan Carr-Harseth, LICSW
Director of Behavioral Health, Social Services, and Chronic Disease Management; Life Care Medical Center

Alyssa Meller, MA
Chief Operating Officer, Rural Health Innovations, a subsidiary of the National Rural Health Resource Center

Jen Peterson, MSW, LGSW
Social Work Supervisor, FirstLight Health System

Session Details

Date and time: Tuesday, April 4, 2:30-3:30 p.m.
Learning track: Social Determinants of Health
Learning level: Intermediate

Session Description

Rural hospital emergency departments often struggle to meet the behavioral health needs of their community. In response, the Minnesota Department of Health's Office of Rural Health and Primary Care awarded a grant to provide customizable technical assistance to help rural hospitals. Each hospital identified a specific population, providers and community organizations to help develop strategic objectives to meet community needs. This presentation will provide an overview of the project's process and two hospitals will share ways they partnered with providers and community organizations to proactively address their communities' behavioral health needs.

Learning Objectives

At the conclusion of this session, participants will be able to:

  • Describe the technical assistance provided to support hospitals in improving the experience and outcomes for behavioral health patients.
  • Explain ways hospitals engaged patients, families and community agencies to enhance team-based care for behavioral health patients.
  • Gain insights from the innovative ways hospitals utilize available community resources to create a stronger safety net for behavioral health patients.