(July 1, 2013) – Beginning today, a program that supports the efforts of
primary care providers who see children and youth to assess and manage mental
health concerns in their patients will expand to serve the entire state.
Maryland Behavioral Health Integration in Pediatric Primary Care (B-HIPP) is a
collaboration between the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, the
State Department of Education, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health,
the University of Maryland School of Medicine and the Salisbury University
Department of Social Work.
which is supported by funding from the Departments of Health and Education, launched
in January 2013 in Western Maryland and the Eastern Shore. The program aims to
make managing child and adolescent mental health problems more routine in
primary care settings, and to make it an efficient and effective gateway to
specialty mental health care.
“This program connects pediatric clinicians
around the state to mental health professionals for consultation and guidance,”
said Dr. Joshua M. Sharfstein, Secretary of the Department of Health and Mental
Hygiene. “This kind of innovation will improve the care of Maryland's
“Early diagnosis and treatment of behavioral
issues in young children is key to improved development, a primary goal of our
Race to the Top – Early Learning Challenge Grant,” said State Superintendent of
Schools Lillian Lowery. “Our work with the Department of Health solidifies the
critical link between pediatric physical and mental health care, which will
benefit Maryland children for many years.”
is offered through four main components, all of which are available to primary
care providers without charge and without regard to a patient’s insurance
Consultation Service: B-HIPP provides phone consultation for primary care
providers with child mental health specialists (child psychiatrists,
psychologists, clinical social workers, and licensed professional counselors)
at the University of Maryland and Johns Hopkins. Consultation is available
Monday – Friday, 9am-5pm and all inquiries are responded to within one business
day. The team is available to provide consultation in many areas of behavioral
health including medication management, diagnostic issues, developmental
delays, school/learning issues, autism spectrum disorders, trauma, and early
childhood mental health (ages 0-5).
- Continuing Education:
B-HIPP offers training opportunities to expand the knowledge and skill base of
pediatric primary care providers in mental health.
- Referral & Resource Networking: B-HIPP has developed a
comprehensive database of services across the state to be able to offer primary
care providers targeted referrals for their patients. In addition, they have
cataloged and can provide guidance on the use of screening tools and handouts
which can be disseminated to primary care providers.
- Social Work Co-Location:
In partnership with Salisbury University, B-HIPP places social work faculty and
graduate students in pediatric primary care practices on the Eastern Shore of
Maryland. In fall 2013, co-location will expand to eight placements. In this
mode, social work interns are available on-site to provide screening, brief
intervention, referral and real-time consultation to primary care providers.
"In our first few months we've had the
pleasure of getting to know and working with some amazingly dedicated and savvy clinicians from all over the state,” said Dr. Larry Wissow, program co-director, child
psychiatrist and Professor of Health, Behavior and Society at the Johns Hopkins
Bloomberg School of Public Health. “We have also
been able to connect with other programs targeting support for children and
families, and look forward to being part of an ever more coordinated system
that brings together medical, mental health, and developmental services."
"We are excited about being able to extend
B-HIPP's reach statewide; and to be able to support more primary care professionals
in addressing the mental health needs of the children, adolescents and
families they serve,” said Dr. David Pruitt, program co-director,
Professor of Psychiatry and Pediatrics and head of the Division of Child and
Adolescent Psychiatry at the University of Maryland School of Medicine.
“During the pilot year, our MSW B-HIPP interns
have had 269 contacts with families on Maryland's Lower Eastern Shore. We look
forward to branching into the Mid-Shore area in the fall, and doubling the
number of B-HIPP interns in pediatric primary care offices from four to eight,” said Amy D. Habeger, Social Work faculty member and B-HIPP
Salisbury Program Coordinator. “This program is an
excellent resource for families in Maryland, and we look forward to continued
expansion throughout the state of Maryland.”
date, B-HIPP has enrolled over 100 primary care providers who see children and
youth, and has now opened their services to all such primary care providers
across the state of Maryland. Providers are encouraged to learn more about and sign up for B-HIPP by visiting www.mdbhipp.org or by contacting Program Director, Meghan
Crosby Budinger, at (410) 955-8699, firstname.lastname@example.org.
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