Evaluation of North Shore-LIJ/Northport VA Unified Behavioral Health Center for Military Veterans and Their Families
March 13, 2014
Outside New York State
WebsiteSEE GRANT OUTCOMES
In New York State, rates of behavioral health problems among veterans deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan are high: nearly one out of four struggles with post-traumatic stress disorder and/or depression, and close to 40% have reported binge drinking.
Family members, including children, also experience high rates of behavioral health concerns, such as depression and anxiety. While nearly all veterans are eligible for medical and behavioral health care at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), there are considerable barriers to accessing these services that require veterans to navigate both private and public health services. To create a coordinated care model, the North Shore-Long Island Jewish Health System (North Shore-LIJ) began a collaboration with the Northport Veterans Affairs Medical Center (VAMC) to create the Unified Behavioral Health Center for Military Veterans and Their Families. This center uses a public-private model of care to provide behavioral health care for veterans and their families. NYHealth awarded RAND Corporation a grant to assess the impact of this partnership for expanding access to behavioral health services for veterans and their families.
Under this grant, RAND Corporation documented the implementation of this collaborative approach to assess its viability, facilitate its replication, and examine the impact of treatment on veterans and their families. Specifically, RAND Corporation collected data from site visits, a staff member survey, and a review of services administered to conduct qualitative and quantitative analyses. In addition, RAND analyzed data collected by North Shore-LIJ on various measures of symptoms and quality of life to describe how clients fare before and after treatment. RAND also explored the possibility of measuring client satisfaction and compliance with treatment. RAND prepared a final report summarizing its findings and an accompanying research brief targeted to key policymakers and other decision-makers. To discuss the viability of replicating this model across the United States, RAND convened a roundtable of key stakeholders in Washington, D.C.