Behavioral Health: Meeting Community Need Through Partnership

Tuesday, April 12th

About the Session

In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, the need for behavioral healthcare services is even more apparent. The expected post-COVID mental health surge is here, with increased teen suicide rates and reports from schools, employers, and communities of heightened levels of anxiety and depression. Unfortunately, in the face of this increased demand, many communities lack adequate behavioral healthcare services. From overloaded emergency departments and inpatient floors in hospital settings to inadequate staffing and access to ambulatory services, behavioral healthcare is at a breaking point.

To address these challenges, healthcare delivery organizations have pursued partnerships outside of the medical center and have attempted to connect acute and community services. Community-based solutions can be enormously effective in addressing the full needs of the population; however, acute medical centers generally have little experience with establishing successful partnerships.

To address this gap, the presenters will offer a framework for developing and cultivating successful community partnerships to enhance access to behavioral healthcare services and value to the population served. They will also offer insights on how to successfully plan, develop and implement a shared vision with community partners built on shared goals and trust and outline successful characteristics and traits of successful integration partnerships. The presenters will also review case studies of successful community interventions that target core service needs outside of the hospital setting, including education, housing, transportation, and food insecurity along with targeted support for chronic acute care populations with intensive case management and other community-focused interventions.

Learning Objectives:

  • Explore how to develop a comprehensive behavioral healthcare strategy for your organization.
  • Identify various partnership approaches in behavioral healthcare settings.


Presented By

Stephen M. Merz, FACHE

Sheppard Pratt Solutions

Jennifer Weiss Wilkerson, FACHE

Vice President/Chief Strategy Officer
Sheppard Pratt

Greg Gattman, FACHE

Vice President/COO, Hospitals
Sheppard Pratt