12/20/17 Phoenix Recap: Innovation in Mental Health

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12/20/17 Phoenix Recap: Innovation in Mental Health

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Opening remarks included information about the upcoming experiMental one-day conference on March 8th at Dell Medical School at UT Austin.

Our venue sponsor meltmedia, provided information about their healthcare digital marketing services and upcoming impact of technology in marketing and web applications.

Our speakers were Craig Cott, MD and Josh Leslie, MPAS, PA-C who discussed Mental Health EHRs, Pain Points, Challenges and Solutions.

Josh Leslie provided astounding statistics to demand and access to mental health. Approximately 18% of the population in the US have some form of mental illness, of which approximately 41% of whom are receiving treatment for their illness. There are a relatively low number of mental health practitioners to patients. In fact approximately there is 1 mental health provider to 790 persons. Although there are free counseling resources available, there is still a great shortage of mental health providers to patients.   

Psychiatry is the 4th oldest medical specialty in comparison to other 44 specialties.  Today, almost 60% of psychiatrists are aged 55 or older and the number of child and adult psychiatrists has increased by 12% while other medical specialties have increased by 45% there will be continued demand and access to mental health providers.

Arizona ranks 46th according to Mental Health America, a patient advocacy group that ranks states from best to worse for access to care.

Dr. Cott discussed factors such as issues with clinical documentation in Electronic Health Records and inefficiencies of EHRs must be improved to increase provider availability and patient access. It is estimated that today’s EHRs reduce productivity by 30%.  Dr Cott’s clinical productivity has dropped by 1/3 fewer patients since now required to enter in EHRs.

Dr Cott explained the 50/80 rule where currently 50% of the provider’s time and 80% of the provider’s professional effort is spent managing the EHR vs focusing on patient care. It is difficult to get a full patient story from the EHR as information is segmented with various data points to synthesize. At the end of the day clinicians spend an additional 2 hours to enter up to 280 data points in the medical record that focuses on data collection, not on the best treatment. Many providers have 50 – 100 records left unfinished. Most systems do not reflect the Mental Health workflow.

The solution is a smart EHR that would match the Mental Health specialty workflow. Artificial Intelligence in Healthcare would provide cognitively-based and knowledge-driven expert systems. Selecting a specific observation would drive the problem list, diagnosis and care plan categories based on smart technology.

Much work is needed, but Dr. Cott is working on creating such a system to increase use of EHRs but not as a barrier to patient care.

Thank you to our sponsors listed below:

Venue Sponsor

meltmedia is an award-winning digital design & development agency with 80+ full-time, onshore employees. Leading pharmaceutical, biotech, and healthcare clients includes Genentech, Honor Health, and Dignity Health. meltmedia was named #1 web design agency, a top 5 marketing agency, and best place to work by Phoenix Business Journal, and an Inc. 5000 fastest-growing company. 

Event Sponsors


DeeveHealth prevents or delays Type 2 Diabetes for people who are pre-diabetic using a mobile solution in a combination of behavioral psychology with strong peer group support, wireless device, and health coach.


Medtexter empowers patients to manage and remember to take their medications on time. When they forget, Medtexter engages them, their family members, and their healthcare providers, to prevent unnecessary healthcare costs and improve health outcomes.

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