Southcentral Foundation’s Behavioral Health Integration Playbook

When Southcentral Foundation surveyed the Alaska Native community upon establishing the Nuka System of Care, the community identified behavioral health as one of its top needs. In an effort to make behavioral services more effective and accessible to customer-owners, and build upon the success of its Integrated Care Teams, SCF integrated behavioral services into its primary care clinics approximately 17 years ago. Now, to support the sustainability of its integrated behavioral health systems and support other health care organizations in integrating behavioral services, SCF has created the Behavioral Health Integration Playbook. This playbook is based on SCF’s experiences, successes, and lessons learned in integrating behavioral services into primary care.

The Behavioral Integration Playbook includes information about how to set up systems for integrated behavioral health in a health care organization. The playbook discusses many aspects of integration, including but not limited to roles and responsibilities of integrated behavioral health consultants, approaches to clinical behavioral work, workload balance, facility considerations, data usage, charting, how to ensure access to behavioral services, and more. The information in the playbook comes from SCF subject matter experts who were part of SCF’s original implementation of integrated behavioral services. Although the playbook is designed with primary care integration in mind, many of the principles can be applied to integration with other systems of health care.

The playbook covers every step of the process of integration, from beginning with a project charter, through implementation, and finally to evaluating the results of the project. The information in the playbook comes from SCF subject matter experts who were present throughout the process of integration and helped set up the integrated behavioral systems SCF uses today.

The Behavioral Integration Playbook, as well as SCF’s Integrated Care Teams Playbook, are now available for free download on this website. Follow this link to download either or both. For more information about the Behavioral Health Integration playbook, or any aspect of SCF’s Nuka System of Care, feel free to contact the SCF Learning Institute.