NorthShore Health Centers offers behavioral health care in the primary care setting (integrated care) in the Lake Station and Portage communities. This service is offered in order to address the health care needs of the consumers who come in for primary medical care and may also be suffering from a mental health issue, such as depression, anxiety, panic attacks or other health concerns that in fact affect their overall health and well being. By treating the patient holistically, and not separating the physical from the mental, NorthShore hopes to better serve the health care needs of the communities and patients we serve.
Behavioral Health also includes lifestyle modifications; such as dealing with chronic pain conditions, parenting issues, family stresses and illnesses that may be caused or be effected by stress, i.e., digestion issues, insomnia, etc..
The goal of integrated health care is to improve overall health through comprehensive care by treating the physical problems while decreasing the mental health load on the patient and providing a team approach for the primary care providers and behavioral health consultants.
These services have been found to decrease the number of stress related medical care issues and help provide patients with better coping skills for dealing with the problems they are facing, whether the behavioral health care is accompanied by treatment with medications or not. Behavioral health care includes assessments, education, and solution-focused/cognitive behavioral interventions. There is a heavy reliance on motivational interviewing and stages of change when providing these interventions.
NorthShore Health Centers has several licensed clinical social workers who work closely with a board certified Psychiatrist to provide these Behavioral Health Services.
NorthShore now offers Telepsychiatry at our clinics. Telepsychiatry is a private and secure video meeting system similar to how Facetime or Skype works. Patient will be able to interact with their psychiatrist through a computer. NorthShore will provide telepsychiatry services at all of our locations, so patients can see their psychiatrist from the same locations they already see their other providrs. A referral from a NorthShore provider is required to participate in the telepsychiatry program.
We understand it can be difficult to find a local psychiatrist with available appointments. By bringing telepsychiatry to our health center, we can improve our current services and reach more patients. Telepsychiatry is endorsed by the American Psychiatric Association and is in operation in thousands of clinics and medical settings around the country allowing more patients to have direct access to their psychiatrists.
Telepsychiatry improves patients access to a psychiatrist and will reduce travel time and costs. It also means that patients will not have to be away from work for long periods of time. At this time, the charge is no different than an in-person visit. Many insurers, including Medicaid, are covering most telepsychiatry consultations.