Provider Perceptions of an Integrated Primary Care Quality Improvement Strategy: The PPAQ Toolkit

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Abstract

The Primary Care Behavioral Health (PCBH) model of integrated primary care is challenging to implement with high fidelity. The Primary Care Behavioral Health Provider Adherence Questionnaire (PPAQ) was designed to assess provider adherence to essential model components and has recently been adapted into a quality improvement toolkit. The aim of this pilot project was to gather preliminary feedback on providers’ perceptions of the acceptability and utility of the PPAQ toolkit for making beneficial practice changes. Twelve mental health providers working in Department of Veterans Affairs integrated primary care clinics participated in semistructured interviews to gather quantitative and qualitative data. Descriptive statistics and qualitative content analysis were used to analyze data. Providers identified several positive features of the PPAQ toolkit organization and structure that resulted in high ratings of acceptability, while also identifying several toolkit components in need of modification to improve usability. Toolkit content was considered highly representative of the (PCBH) model and therefore could be used as a diagnostic self-assessment of model adherence. The toolkit was considered to be high in applicability to providers regardless of their degree of prior professional preparation or current clinical setting. Additionally, providers identified several system-level contextual factors that could impact the usefulness of the toolkit. These findings suggest that frontline mental health providers working in (PCBH) settings may be receptive to using an adherence-focused toolkit for ongoing quality improvement.

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