Indiana Behavioral Health Access Program for Youth

Managing the mental health needs of adolescent patients can be challenging in a busy primary care setting. Additionally, with more than half of young adults in the United States experiencing significant behavioral health problems before age 18, fewer than 20 percent of those who need treatment receive the care they need to thrive.

To address the ongoing challenges facing behavioral health care across the state, the Indiana Behavioral Access Program for Youth (IN-BeHAPY) links pediatric primary care providers with behavioral health specialists through free phone consultations, referrals and education.

Indiana youth not receiving needed treatment for depression
states have launched child psychiatry access programs
primary care physicians trained to serve children practicing in Indiana

Adolescent psychiatrists consult with children to help with assessment, medication and general mental health questions.

A certified social worker will help find the most appropriate evidence-based treatment programs available in a patient’s local community.

Through webinars and free continuing medical education (CME) events, the IN-BeHAPY program will provide education on mental health.

“By optimizing a practical, effective and sustainable technology-enhanced system, we can help reduce the burden of behavioral health problems among Indiana families.”

-Leslie Hulvershorn, MD

Access to Behavioral Health Care

A major barrier to youth and families accessing quality behavioral health assessment and treatment services is the severe lack of psychiatrists, psychologists and social workers in their communities, especially in rural areas. Many families seek behavioral health care in pediatric primary care clinics, but these facilities rarely have the staff or resources to meet the complex clinical needs of patients, resulting in both under-treatment and over-prescription of psychotropic medications. The Indiana Behavioral Health Access Program for Youth boosts Hoosier families’ access to quality behavioral health care, increases support to primary care clinics and trains primary care providers to effectively manage behavioral health needs in their practices.

Quick Facts

No. Patient authorization or consent isn’t required to call IN-BeHAPY. This is due to the following:

  • No bill or payment is collected for an IN-BeHAPY call; therefore, no financial consent is needed.
  • Provider-to-provider consultation is covered within the boundaries of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) section 45 CFR 164.506.

No. IN-BeHAPY is designed to be a consult service that supports primary care providers in managing the care of their patients.

If a patient is currently in crisis, call 911. If a patient is not in imminent danger, the IN-BeHAPY program consultants are available to discuss best practices for treatment and support.

The program’s team will provide information to make appropriate referrals; however, IN-BeHAPY cannot expedite or change the admitting process for Riley Hospital for Children.

Yes, all individuals working in primary care can contact the IN-BeHAPY program. When staff members call to set up a consultation, please be sure that they can provide information about availability and information about the case in question (initial questions, patient’s demographic information, etc.) so that program experts can prepare for the call.

All callers are asked to provide a brief description for their call so it can be appropriately directed. Callers will be asked questions about themselves, including their name and contact information verification. If this is a first time call, program experts may also ask additional demographic questions. If the call is about a specific child (versus a global question) some basic demographic information will be requested (child’s name, date of birth, insurance coverage, medications, service history, etc), which may may vary among individual calls.

Child Psychiatry Access Program Project Team

Zachary W. Adams, PhD

Zachary W. Adams, PhD

Assistant Professor of Clinical Psychology
Leslie A. Hulvershorn, MD

Leslie A. Hulvershorn, MD

Associate Professor of Psychiatry