Study: Telehealth outcomes positive for behavioral health services in Detroit area

Study: Telehealth outcomes positive for behavioral health services in Detroit area


A multi-agency study on the use of telehealth services for behavioral healthcare in Wayne County found widespread support for continued and expanded use of virtual care, according to a newly released report.

“Functioning and symptoms improved somewhat during the implementation indicating the telehealth was capable of sustaining consumers even during the pandemic,” according to the conclusion of the study conducted by consultant Brian Dates.

“Both program staff and consumers who participated in the study generally rated the transition positively. Many consumers suggested that the option of continued access to telehealth be extended, even after the pandemic has subsided,” the report said.

The survey of 11,000 clients and supporting staff was conducted by Community Care Services, the Guidance Center, Northeast Integrated Health and Southwest Solutions. The four agencies are part of the Detroit Wayne Integrated Health Network.

Here are some highlights of the study:

 

  • Transition from in-person counseling to virtual care was successful.
  • Telehealth resulted in a significant increase in the number of client contacts by staff.
  • Functioning and symptoms improved somewhat during the implementation indicating the telehealth was capable of sustaining consumers even during the pandemic.
  • Many clients suggested that the option of continued access to telehealth be extended, even after the pandemic has subsided.
  • Women received significantly fewer services than did men. Women also had significantly higher levels of depression as reflected patient health question scores.
  • Blacks received significantly more services per month than white clients did. They also received significantly more service time than white participants. The disparity in each measure was due to very high utilization by African American males.

 



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Marie Maynes
Marie Maynes is a Sports enthusiast and writes for the Sports section of ANH.

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