Harbor, ProMedica to host medical conferenceWritten by Kristen Criswell | | email@example.com
Harbor and ProMedica are sponsoring a medical conference, “Integrating Primary Care and Behavioral Medicine,” on May 7. The conference focuses on ways primary care physicians and behavior medicine physicians can integrate their fields.
According to the National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare, individuals with severe persistent mental illness (SPMI) die 25 years before others. A new 10 by 10 campaign by the Center for Psychiatric Rehabilitation, aims to cut that number by 10 years in 10 years. The only way to lower the age of early SPMI deaths is to educate primary care doctors, said Dr. Cuneyd Tolek, medical director and vice president for medical affairs at Harbor.
“It’s not the Harbors of the world that take care of the masses, it’s the primary care doctors. Someone has to find these folks and understand what’s going on with them,” he said.
The conference features four lecturers and a panel discussion on practical ways behavioral and primary care doctors can talk to each other and work together for the benefit of the patient, Tolek said.
Kathy Reynolds, inventor of the Wagner Chronic Care model, will discuss the best ways to integrate the two forms of health care, drawing from her experience with integration in Ann Arbor. Dr. Andrew Aldridge will examine the importance of medical compliance and practical strategies to facilitate the treatment of depression. Dr. Dennis Rosen will discuss ADHD in children and adolescents and the debate of when is it OK to stimulate or not-stimulate. Tolek will examine primary care evaluation of behavioral disorders.
Tolek hopes to teach other doctors using his mistakes and experiences from his 28-year career as a primary care physician with a focus on behavioral disorders of adults and children.
Screening is an important tool for primary care doctors, Tolek said. Since 1994, Tolek has used this “stethoscope for the mind,” and it has helped him save time and look at issues that may need focus.
“Nine out of 10 doctors know how to figure out whether someone is truly depressed, schizophrenic or anxious, but it’s a very time intensive thing to do,” he said.
Screening saves doctors time and allows them to treat the right problem and help the patient more effectively, Tolek said. Symptoms of adult ADHD and bipolar disorder are very similar so a doctor should screen for both and then weed out the other symptoms to treat the right disease, he said.
Tolek hopes to teach his colleagues to screen, make the right diagnosis, know how to treat the conditions they screened and found and do the right things in terms of what drugs to prescribe, he said.
The six-hour conference is hosted at the Hilton Garden Inn, 6165 Levis Commons Blvd., with registration at 7:45 a.m. and the conference from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Doctors, nurses and social workers are encouraged to attend. Registration is $75 for physicians and $60 for allied health professionals. To register, call (419) 479-6003 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
ProMedica Health System designated the event as an educational activity with up to 6.25 AMA PRA category 1 credits. Additional collaboration for the consortium is provided by UTMC Department of Psychiatry, Mercy Family and Internal Medicine Residency programs and St. Luke’s medical staff.