Outer-context determinants in the sustainment phase of a reimbursement-driven implementation of evidence-based practices in children’s mental health services
BACKGROUND: Although there is increasing investment to implement evidence-based practices (EBPs) in public systems across the USA, continued or sustained use of EBPs after initial implementation remains a challenge. The low integration of EBPs in routine practice severely limits their public health impact, highlighting the need to understand factors that affect the return on costly investments in EBP implementation. This study aims to (1) characterize trajectories of EBP delivery volume through a reimbursement-driven implementation and (2) examine impacts of system-level policy regulatory activity and state-level mental health services funding on the implementation reimbursement strategy.
METHODS: This study involved secondary data analyses. Psychotherapy administrative claims and regulatory site visit data from the Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health and California state mental health expenditures were extracted from 2010 to 2017. Multilevel regression examined EBP claims volume over time with state expenditures and regulatory compliance as predictors.
RESULTS: EBP claims volume trajectories demonstrated a rapid initial increase, followed by a period of decrease, and a small increase in the final year. State mental health expenditures increased across time reflecting increased funding availability. State mental health expenditures and system regulatory compliance were inversely related to EBP claims volume.
CONCLUSIONS: The impact of reimbursement-driven EBP implementation strategy is sensitive to multiple outer-context determinants. At the system level, commitment to fidelity of implementation regulations resulted in reduced use of the reimbursement strategy. Alternative reimbursement streams not tied to EBPs coupled with an expanded array of reimbursable services also impacted the use of the reimbursement strategy to implement EBPs.
Lui, J. H. L., Brookman-Frazee, L., Lind, T., Le, K., Roesch, S., Aarons, G. A., . . . Lau, A. S. (2021). Outer-context determinants in the sustainment phase of a reimbursement-driven implementation of evidence-based practices in children's mental health services. Implement Sci, 16(1), 82. doi:10.1186/s13012-021-01149-5