What is measurement based care?
measurement based care tools is the systematic administration of symptom rating scales and other assessment tools to help initially assess behavioral health patients, inform beginning and ongoing treatment decisions, improve treatment outcomes, and measure results. It is a foundational practice in numerous evidence-based practices and frameworks.
What is measurement based care in mental health?
Despite the importance of measuring outcomes, data-driven treatment is still in its infancy in the behavioral healthcare field. Symptom rating scales, for example, are core components of research trials but are rarely used in routine care.
Clinicians need to continuously track client progress using systematic feedback systems so they can adjust their approach and ensure they are providing the best care possible. This is known as measurement-based care and has been shown to decrease symptom deterioration, reduce dropout rates, and increase client engagement.
Why Use Symptom Rating Scales?
Symptom rating scales are an effective way to objectively assess a patient’s symptoms and how well those symptoms are responding to treatment. These ratings are a critical part of the evaluation process and allow providers to identify the specific symptoms that are causing difficulty for the patient so they can tailor their treatment plan accordingly.
Why Should I Implement Measurement-Based Care?
As the behavioral healthcare industry continues to struggle with high costs and declining enrollment, more and more providers and mental health clinics are adopting measurement-based care as a means of bringing their insurance companies down and delivering better patient outcomes. The key to implementing this practice is automating the process of capturing, charting, and reporting outcome data so you can get paid more for your services.
The Behavioral Health Outcomes Framework is a framework that uses standardized and validated patient-reported outcome (PRO) measures to measure the impact of different behavioral health treatments on a person’s overall wellbeing. This approach is backed by extensive clinical, scientific, and empirical evidence that supports its efficacy.
A recent literature review conducted by Dr. John Fortney, PhD, outlines the potential benefits of incorporating measurement-based care into psychiatric practices. It also includes information about the use of validated symptom rating scales and strategies for implementing MBC.
What is the Difference Between Research Outcomes and Clinical Outcomes?
Researchers have found that, while many of the same outcomes are reported in clinical trials as in research, the treatment methods and outcomes vary significantly between the two. This gap is largely due to the lack of a consistent, data-driven approach in behavioral health treatment.
To remedy this, practitioners have been experimenting with new and innovative ways to collect data that is more consistent and objective. Some of these methods include the incorporation of passive metrics from wearables or apps into a traditional psychiatric assessment to help clinicians gauge a patient’s real-world functioning and engage them more in their own care.
By combining these active and passive measures, practitioners can create an environment that promotes shared decision-making and provides a strong therapeutic alliance between the patient and clinician. This enhanced measurement-based care model is easier than ever before thanks to technology that makes it simpler to collect, analyze, and share data, ensuring a smooth and seamless experience for clients and clinicians alike.