To ensure that more patients receive the mental health resources they need, UCLA Health made depression screening simpler for patients and providers by integrating a web-based home-grown tool called the Behavioral Health Checkup with Epic.
As a result, they increased their depression screening rates in primary care from 16% to 74% and eliminated manual data entry by clinicians. This screening helps clinicians identify patients who are depressed or suicidal in the primary care setting, even when the patient presents with a complaint unrelated to behavioral health.
UCLA provided training to reinforce screening all patients during rooming workflows. When a nurse or medical assistant rooms a patient, the patient completes a web-based assessment on the clinic desktop or a tablet that integrates with Epic, eliminating paper screening forms. Clinicians can review the compiled results in the EHR while talking with the patient, facilitating conversations around mental health. After the visit is over, relevant charges are automatically filed via task-based order completion workflow.
For their efforts to increase primary care depression screening rates, UCLA was one of several Epic community members to receive a 2018 HIMSS Davies Enterprise Award and one of several Epic community members, such as Parkland, to implement universal mental health screenings.
Epic community members can learn more about mental health screening workflows in a related Clinical Program from Kaiser Permanente.