Care integration in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act: implications for behavioral health

Adm Policy Ment Health. 2013 Jul;40(4):258-63. doi: 10.1007/s10488-012-0405-0.


Individuals with co-occurring serious mental illness and substance use disorders experience a highly fragmented system of care, contributing to poor health outcomes and elevated levels of unmet treatment needs. Several elements in the health care reform law may address these issues by enhancing the integration of physical and behavioral health care systems. The purpose of this paper is to analyze these elements, which fall into three domains: increasing access, restructuring financing and reimbursement mechanisms, and enhancing infrastructure. We conclude with a consideration of the implementation challenges that lie ahead.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Comorbidity
  • Delivery of Health Care, Integrated*
  • Health Services Accessibility
  • Humans
  • Mental Disorders
  • Mental Health Services
  • Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act / legislation & jurisprudence*
  • Reimbursement Mechanisms
  • Substance-Related Disorders