NEWPORT BEACH, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Safety Net Connect (SNC), a leading provider of innovative web-based healthcare tools for organizations assisting underserved populations, today announced that the Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health (LACDMH) will utilize SNC’s eConsult system to assist psychiatric doctors in addressing medical health concerns.
LACDMH will bring SNC’s eConsult system to 21 County Mental Health sites, starting in fall 2016. The eConsult system will give psychiatrists a convenient, online connection with the Los Angeles County Department of Health Services (LADHS) to discuss general health issues that may arise during a patient’s psychiatric appointment – such as referrals for specialty care, advice on medication or condition-specific management, or to connect a patient to a primary care provider. This collaboration is designed to provide convenience and enhanced care for mental health patients through improved provider collaboration.
“General medicine concerns often arise at psychiatric appointments,” says Ricardo Mendoza, MD, Chief Mental Health Psychiatrist for Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health, “eConsult offers a convenient, cost-effective way for psychiatrists to collaborate effectively with physicians, creating greater continuity of care and convenience for patients.”
Since 2012, LADHS has used SNC’s eConsult system to give general practitioners a convenient way to connect with specialists – including psychiatrists – to provide timely, coordinated specialty care within a patient’s medical home. In the case of the LACDMH eConsult project, inquiries will flow from specialist to PCP. This novel approach will eliminate the silos created by the traditional compartmentalization of mental health and general health, through a collaborative care model that allows psychiatrists to address the full spectrum of a patient’s needs at the point of care.
“eConsult has been extremely effective for increasing specialty access and care coordination between LADHS providers,” says Dr. Paul Giboney, Director of Specialty Care for DHS. “The platform has also proved to be flexible enough for the diverse needs of our large system. It is with great enthusiasm that we welcome the expansion of eConsult to LACDMH’s psychiatric sites, and we look forward to positive outcomes from this collaboration between LACDMH psychiatrists and LADHS general medicine practitioners.”
“We are pleased to assist LACDMH in their efforts to connect mental health professionals with general medicine advice through LADHS,” says Chris Cruttenden, President of SNC. “This is a perfect fit for our eConsult technology – facilitating provider communication to improve patient care is our core mission.”
About The Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health
The Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health is the largest county-operated mental health department in the United States, directly operating 85 program sites and more than 300 co-located sites. Each year, it contracts with approximately 1,000 agencies and individual practitioners to provide a spectrum of mental health services to more than 250,000 residents of all ages. The Department’s mission – enriching lives through partnership to strengthen our community’s capacity to support recovery and resiliency – is accomplished by working with stakeholders and community partners to provide clinically competent, culturally sensitive and linguistically appropriate mental health services to clients in the least restrictive manner possible. For more information, please visit www.dmh.lacounty.gov
About Safety Net Connect
Since 2009, Safety Net Connect (SNC) has partnered with public and private organizations to provide a multitude of successful and nationally recognized web-based healthcare solutions for underserved and safety net populations. SNC’s innovative solutions have reached over 5 million patients from clients such as Los Angeles Department of Health Services (LADHS), MedPoint, LA Care, Orange County Healthcare Agency, CalOptima, San Diego Healthcare Agency, and Cook County MHN (an Illinois Medicaid Project). For more information, please visit www.safetynetconnect.com