As recently seen in the Buffalo News, we’re proud to be the first primary care practice in the Western NY region to bring more mental health resources into our offices through TCD Medical – a fellow Amherst company which helps support patients with behavioral health needs and chronic conditions.
At Highgate Medical, we have 6 family physicians, 8 nurse practitioners and 13 physician assistants serving 33,000 patients. Preventative care is one of our primary objectives at Highgate, and we understand that treating physical ailments is only half the battle when it comes to our patients’ wellness – which is why we’ve integrated with TCD.
Founded in 2017 by Dr. Vernice E. Bates, president of the Dent Neurologic Institute in Amherst, TCD’s Behavioral Health Integration Program provides an array of specialists to work with patients between primary care visits when we believe those patients may be struggling mental health issues ranging from: depression, anxiety, addiction, substance abuse, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), Alzheimer’s or other dementia, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, eating disorders, and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
The fact of the matter is, almost 1 in 5 adults in the U.S. has experienced some form of mental illness, according to the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. The Milliman employee benefits research group issued a report earlier this year that estimated delayed and avoided behavioral care led to $406 billion in additional health care costs last year alone – one of the biggest cost drivers in the country which dwarfs cardiovascular disease and oncology issues.
There is a wide range of reasons why patients – and those supporting them – could be in need of some mental health care: whether it’s coping both with the loss of loved ones and health conditions of their own; families struggling with loved ones hooked on opioids or recently diagnosed with a mental illness; and caregivers ignoring their own needs because they are so focused on a spouse or parent slipping into more serious conditions.
Thankfully, between Highgate and TCD, these crucial needs will be addressed for anyone who needs the help – and at no extra cost. Medicare recently changed insurance codes to improve payments for primary care practices that establish connections with providers like TCD. Primary care practices bill insurers and integrative specialists receive fixed fees for helping out – so everyone wins in this new model.
Whether you’re a patient at Highgate or have a loved one who is, we are here to help you through any difficulties you may be experiencing. Ask us about how we can get you the care that you need and we’ll get through it together.