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August 2014
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Psychiatric Services

A Journal of the American Psychiatric Association Editor: Howard H. Goldman, M.D., Ph.D.
Articles  |  August 1, 2014
Disappointing PTSD Treatment Rates a “Call to Action”

Are efforts to engage veterans in PTSD treatment falling short? A study from the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research found a sharp drop-off in treatment seeking after a mental health evaluation. Seventy-five percent of veterans who were referred for further evaluation after a postdeployment health assessment attended a follow-up appointment. However, among veterans who received a PTSD diagnosis, 22% had only one mental health visit and only 41% received minimally adequate care. The findings are a call to action, the authors said.

Articles  |  August 1, 2014
The Business Case for Follow-Up After Suicide Attempts

Providing follow-up calls to patients after they leave the hospital is not only good clinical practice, but it can help with the bottom line. In this study, the authors estimated the return on investment (ROI) for every $1 spent calling patients with suicidal ideation or deliberate self-harm who had been discharged from a hospital or emergency department. The ROI for the calls ranged from $1.76 to $2.43—a significant return that “supports the business case for payers, particularly Medicaid, to invest in postdischarge follow-up calls,” the authors concluded.

Columns  |  August 1, 2014
Dear Psychiatrist, Should Patients Be Peers?

An expansion of peer provider hiring at the mental health clinic where she works prompted the author to e-mail other community psychiatrists to ask about their experiences working alongside current patients. The responses reflected both the benefits and challenges of this growing trend. For one psychiatrist, hiring peer providers is “a hallmark of recovery.” For another, it represents “a politically correct approach” that precludes honest discussion of the difficulties involved.

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