Integrated Health Care
Collaboration between health professionals to provide complete treatment to patients and improve overall well-being.
What is Integrated Health Care?
Integrated health care, often referred to as interprofessional health care, is an approach characterized by a high degree of collaboration and communication among health professionals. What makes integrated health care unique is the sharing of information among team members related to patient care and the establishment of a comprehensive treatment plan to address the biological, psychological and social needs of the patient. The interprofessional health care team includes a diverse group of members (e.g., physicians, nurses, psychologists and other health professionals), depending on the needs of the patient.
Psychologists in Integrated Health Care
These integrated behavioral health practices around the country feature psychologists and physicians working together in pediatric, obstetric/gynecological and family practice settings around the country.
The benefits of an integrated health care approach extend to patients, caregivers, providers and the larger health care system. Coordinated care:
- Reduces depressive symptoms.
- Enhances access to services.
- Improves quality of care.
- Lowers overall health care costs.
Where Does It Apply?
Integrated health care delivery can benefit individuals in settings across the lifespan:
- Primary care.
- Specialized medical settings (e.g., rehabilitation units, cardiology and surgical centers).
- Long-term care settings.
- Community-based health centers.
- Social service sites.