Behavioral Health in Primary Care Program
Led by a panel of mental health experts, ECHO Idaho helps participants learn best practices for treating common mental health conditions, connect with peers from around the state to discuss what really works and get feedback on difficult patient cases. These sessions create a dialogue among clinicians about best practices and resources for identifying and treating behavioral health issues.
Virtual sessions meet first and third Wednesdays
11 a.m. to noon Pacific time / Noon to 1 p.m. Mountain time
ECHO Idaho's full series schedule is available here.
The target audience is primary care providers (MD, PA, NP, RN, etc.), but all clinicians and behavioral health specialists are welcome.
Participation in ECHO Idaho is free for clinicians and organizations.
- Please register here for the ongoing sessions.
- Professional Development: Participants gain new skills and competencies for managing patients.
- Creating Community: Clinician teams can increase professional satisfaction and decrease isolation, thus creating a sense of community.
- Increased Patient Satisfaction: Patients can continue to work with their trusted clinician instead of traveling long distances to be seen by a specialist.
- Improved Quality of Care: Healthcare professionals who participate in ECHO increase their knowledge and self-efficacy.
- No-Cost CME: ECHO Idaho offers free continuing education (CME) credits. CME is available for participating in live sessions only, not for watching recorded sessions. To claim continuing education credit and provide feedback, please complete this post-session evaluation survey.
The University of Idaho, WWAMI Medical Education Program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians.
The University of Idaho, WWAMI Medical Education Program designates each live activity for a maximum of 1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.
PAs, NPs, RNs, CADC/ACADC/CPS, Social Workers, Counselors and Therapists and others: Learn how ECHO Idaho can help support your continuing education needs here.
About 80 percent of family doctors’ patients will have some sort of psychological or psychiatric condition, according to Andrew Baron, MD.
“You can’t ignore it. It’s there. They’re your patient, so let’s figure out how we can help this patient,” he said. “In the public, mental health is everywhere. There are very few families that have not been touched by some sort of mental health or substance abuse disorder. It affects all of us.”
Baron is the chief medical officer at Terry Reilly Health Services, and an active member of Project ECHO Idaho.
He said Project ECHO Idaho is a chance for healthcare providers across the state to honor their Hippocratic oath, and in his own community health center he encourages all his physicians to participate. Through continued medical education, these providers improve the care patients in Idaho are going to receive.
And it’s convenient to participate.
“I look forward to participating in Project ECHO. I sit down. I eat my lunch. I turn on my computer. I see everyone’s face on the screen in the room where the facilitators are and where we do a didactic session, and we learn about a particular issue or condition. Then we do case discussions,” Baron said.
For Baron, it provides an outlet to discuss complicated cases where he’s not sure what to do next. In a safe setting, he and others around the state have the opportunity to discuss the appropriate course of action for real-world conditions.
But it’s more than an opportunity for medical education; it’s ultimately a support network by doctors for patients.
ECHO Idaho is led by the University of Idaho and the WWAMI Medical Education Program. ECHO Idaho’s Behavioral Health in Primary Care Program is also supported in part under grant number SM081387 from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The views, policies and opinions expressed are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of SAMHSA or HHS.