Supporting Mental Health Conditions with Virtual Primary Care
August 29, 2023
First Stop Health
Only 28% of people live in an area with proper access to mental health professionals and 70% feel that the healthcare system is difficult to navigate.1,2 Virtual primary care can assist the 20% of adults with mental health issues by providing easily accessible, and person-centered care. Virtual primary care can also help with diagnosis, treatment, motivational interviewing, and seamlessly integrate with various benefits programs.
Diagnosis of chronic depression, anxiety and other mental health conditions is performed through detailed personal care and a history review with a patient. Using the Diagnostic Statistical Manual (DSM) criteria or the Patient Healthcare Questionnaire (PHQ-9) for diagnosis, virtual doctors can address their mental health concerns.
Virtual doctors can prescribe medications for anxiety, depression, seasonal affective disorder and more that are safe and effective, such as SSRIs or SNRIs. Prescriptions are sent to the member's choice of pharmacy immediately following appointments. People with conditions that require in-person support, such as bipolar disorder or schizophrenia, can be helped once stable with medication refills.
Many patients benefit from therapy for their depression, anxiety or other mental health condition in addition to medication treatment. Virtual primary care and virtual mental health services can offer dual therapy which leads to better whole-person health guidance. Virtual care can breakdown high cost, wait times, provider shortages and geographic limitations.
Total Health Guidance
With virtual primary care, doctors guide members through the right treatment plans for their mental health condition. Mental health and physical health are intricately interwoven, and virtual doctors support these dualities. Those with chronic conditions are 3x more likely to develop a mental health illness and virtual primary care can address both chronic and mental health needs.3 For example, virtual primary care physicians can treat a patient’s depression and in doing so, improve the patient’s adherence to the lifestyle and medication regimen needed to control their diabetes.
First Stop Health (FSH) Virtual Care Solutions
FSH Virtual Primary Care,Virtual Urgent Care (Telemedicine) and Virtual Mental Health solutions deliver patient-first, holistic care to members where and when they need it. Virtual Primary Care consists of preventive and chronic care to help coordinate and manage the many touchpoints of members’ healthcare journeys. With Virtual Urgent Care, members have access to 24/7 urgent care for episodic health concerns. Virtual Mental Health provides counseling to members, and in conjunction with Virtual Primary Care guidance and medication management, can lead to better whole-person health.