NeuroFlow — a Philadelphia-based startup that provides behavioral health integration software — struck a new health system partnership on Monday. The company announced that New Jersey-based Atlantic Health System will be using its technology across 16 accountable care organization (ACO) sites.
This news comes a couple weeks after NeuroFlow embarked on a similar partnership with Emory Healthcare in Atlanta. Some of the company’s other health system customers include Ascension, Jefferson Health, Trinity Health and Southcoast Health.
Founded in 2016, NeuroFlow’s goal is to incorporate behavioral health into overall healthcare, Chief Medical Officer Tom Zaubler said in a recent interview.
“The fundamental problem is that most people with psychiatric illness simply are not identified as having psychiatric illness — and often when they are, they don’t get the care they need. About 60% of people with psychiatric illness in any given year receive no care whatsoever. What NeuroFlow does is use population-based, evidence-based models of care to leverage resources that are very limited,” Zaubler explained.
The company’s platform allows providers to give patients behavioral health assessments that can detect a wide range of conditions, usually starting with anxiety and depression. The platform engages with patients by giving them personalized self care activities and allowing them to log daily insights like sleep patterns and mood scores. This enables the platform to measure patients’ progress and update their risk levels.
Providers using the platform have access to AI-powered clinical decision support tools to determine the best care plan for each patient. The platform also has a triage engine that triggers an alert when a patient’s acuity level rises so that clinicians can step in to provide the right level of care.
Scaling this population-based care model is especially important given the healthcare sector’s massive dearth of behavioral health specialists, Zaubler pointed out.
Aware of the need to increase access to behavioral health services, Atlantic Health System has begun rolling out NeuroFlow’s technology to facilitate behavioral health screenings for adult patients whose providers are enrolled in ACOs. In the following months, the health system plans to enroll younger patients as well.
Jim Barr, Atlantic Health System’s vice president of physician value-based programs and chief medical officer of ACOs, said that the health system reviewed “a number of different behavioral health companies” but did not name which ones. NeuroFlow beat the others because he and his team thought the company was best-suited to help the health system achieve the following three goals: alleviating administrative burden among primary care practices, expanding access to behavioral health professionals and improving performance in ACO’s value-based contracts.
“This partnership and integration will allow us to better understand our patients in their entirety, better predict their needs and provide overall better care. NeuroFlow fits perfectly within our ACO mission to help physicians and care teams care better for patients, help patients care better for themselves and help people care better for each other,” Barr declared.
Atlantic Health System’s initial cohort — about 30,000 patients — will be compared to patients at practices that have an on-site behavioral health therapist, as well as to those at practices with no additional behavioral health services, Barr said. By 2024, the health system plans to increase the number of patients to 50,000 or more.
To measure the success of the partnership, Atlantic Health System will track a few key performance metrics. Barr said these will include patient adoption rates, patient experience scores, quality compliance scores, improvements in patient acuity, behavioral healthcare costs, and reductions in utilization for the emergency department and inpatient rooms. The health system will also implement surveys for physicians and practices to evaluate their experiences using NeuroFlow’s platform.
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