Articles

Integrated Care for the Community

Seven-year-old Charlotte was showing up repeatedly to her pediatrician without any signs or symptoms of illness. Her doctor referred her to an on-site therapist at Bon Secours St. Mary’s Hospital pediatric clinic to determine if there were underlying mental health concerns. After a series of therapeutic sessions, UMFS Behavioral Health Clinician Kristi Martin determined that Charlotte kept visiting her pediatrician as a way of trying to cope with the fallout from her parents’ custody battle. Kristi learned that for Charlotte, expressing her feelings behind closed doors made her feel safe.

Charlotte is now seeing a therapist in her community who is helping her develop effective coping skills. Charlotte’s story is an example of the impact that our integrated behavioral health partnership with Bon Secours is having on children and families in the Richmond area. UMFS and Bon Secours Health System leadership designed the model to bridge the gap between children’s medical needs and their mental health needs.

One year after the partnership began, UMFS clinicians and staff are currently collaborating with Bon Secours practitioners in four different locations in Central Virginia including St. Mary’s Hospital Pediatric Specialty Clinics, Lee-Davis and Laburnum Medical Centers, and Cross Ridge Pediatrics and Internal Medicine. Marcy Johnson, UMFS vice president of programs explains that by identifying early warning signs and partnering medical staff with clinicians together, the end result is better overall health and well-being for the children and families we serve.

More information about our partnership with Bon Secours is available on our website here.