Integrating mental health into primary care within the Veterans Health Administration

Fam Syst Health. 2010 Jun;28(2):83-90. doi: 10.1037/a0020130.


The Veterans Health Administration (VHA) has been undertaking a major transformational program of integrating collaborative mental health resources into primary care settings. Key components of the program include colocated collaborative care provided by mental health professionals; care management; and blended programs that combine elements of these two components, whose functions are highly complementary to each other. The program has grown since 2007 from an initiative implementing pilot programs at participating facilities, to a routine expectation of primary care within all VHA medical centers and large community-based outpatient clinics. The national program office supports this VHA initiative in multiple ways, including technical assistance to sites, program and policy development, dissemination of informational tools to facilitate continuous quality improvement, education and training, and partnerships with other existing and emerging VHA programs such as postdeployment health clinics and the patient-centered medical home.

MeSH terms

  • Cooperative Behavior
  • Delivery of Health Care, Integrated / organization & administration*
  • Humans
  • Inservice Training / organization & administration
  • Interinstitutional Relations
  • Mental Disorders / diagnosis
  • Mental Disorders / therapy
  • Mental Health Services / organization & administration*
  • Primary Health Care / organization & administration*
  • United States
  • United States Department of Veterans Affairs / organization & administration*