Although many people require treatment for both physical and behavioral health conditions, our physical and behavioral health systems typically operate independently, without coordination. Medicaid has a significant stake in addressing this issue because physical and behavioral health comorbidity rates among beneficiaries are high. This brief examines five promising approaches currently underway in Medicaid to better integrate physical and behavioral health care.
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More than 58 million Americans, or nearly 1 in 5, live in primary care shortage areas, where the supply of primary care physicians is not sufficient to meet the needs of the population. Particularly as the demand for primary care increases due to population growth, aging, and expanded insurance coverage, strategies to mitigate already sharp strains on primary care capacity are needed. This brief focuses on the opportunity to more fully tap the potential of nurse practitioners to increase access to primary care.