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Podcast 133: Challenges to, and Solutions for, Better Integrating Behavioral Health and Primary Care, with Dr. Tom Young

Apr 30, 2021

Challenges to, and Solutions for, Better Integrating Behavioral Health and Primary Care, with Dr. Tom Young


This week on Health Care Rounds, John talks with Dr. Tom Young about the delivery of behavioral health care and how treatment, driven largely by the pharmaceutical industry, is advancing as science continues to explore how the brain works. Dr. Young explains why primary care physicians and other providers who are not specifically trained in psychiatry need better tools if they are going to continue to treat the vast majority of patients with behavioral health conditions, and what the company he founded, nView, is doing to address that need.

In this episode

Thomas Young, MD 

Dr. Thomas Young is a board-certified family physician with more than 35 years of medical experience. He is recognized as an innovator and thought leader in the fields of consumer-directed health care and population health care management. Dr. Young is the founder and chief medical officer of nView Health, an innovative software company that helps providers better identify, treat, and monitor patients with behavioral health conditions.

John Marchica

John Marchica is a veteran health care strategist and CEO of Darwin Research Group, a health care market intelligence firm specializing in health care delivery systems. He’s a two-time health care entrepreneur, and his first company, FaxWatch, was listed twice on the Inc. 500 list of fastest growing American companies. John is the author of The Accountable Organization and has advised senior management on strategy and organizational change for more than a decade.

John did his undergraduate work in economics at Knox College, has an MBA and M.A. in public policy from the University of Chicago, and completed his Ph.D. coursework at The Dartmouth Institute. He is a faculty associate in the W.P. Carey School of Business and the College of Health Solutions at Arizona State University, and is an active member of the American College of Healthcare Executives.

6:14 – 6:23 Dr. Young: “Probably 80 to 85% of all diagnoses of mental health disorders in this country are made by primary care docs, pediatricians, internists, family docs.”

7:32 – 7:38 Dr. Young: “Almost every person with a chronic disease has some comorbid mental health disorder.”

7:59 – 8:20 John: “I understand why primary care would be the ones, sort of the caretakers, making the diagnosis … [but] if they’re going to prescribe, why do they not then refer to a specialist?”

9:20 – 9:25 Dr. Young: “Tele-psychiatry is one of the first things to really get up and going in the tele-space.”

11:10 – 11:17  Dr. Young: “One in five people in this country have significant depressive symptomatology. That’s a lot of people.”

13:51 – 13:59 Dr. Young: “We’ve got new terminology for … disease processes that have been created — for example, “Zoom dysmorphia.”

16:41 – 16:50 Dr. Young: “We’ve seen advances in drugs like ketamine, which is a fascinating drug when you think about [its] history … and its use.” 

18:21 – 18:33 Dr. Young: “We’re seeing new adventures in how the brain works. … So more’s coming, and the pharmaceutical industry is driving a lot of that.”

18:52 – 18:59 Dr. Young: “Probably in the last 10 years, we’ve learned more about functionality in the brain than in the preceding 2,000 years.”

20:31 – 20:40 Dr. Young: “You go to a therapist for a 40-minute appointment. You go to a [primary care] doctor and the best you’re going to get is five to 10 minutes. They’re busy. They’re trying to treat everything and everybody.” 

25:19 – 25:26 Dr. Young: “Why not … put a psychiatrist in the pocket of every primary care doc? And so that’s what we’ve been doing.”

26:17 – 26:20 Dr. Young: “This is a chest X-ray for your behavioral health.”

28:24 – 28:34 Dr. Young:  “Just hold your phone out in front of your face, and it’ll tell me your blood pressure … your blood sugar … your heart rate, right off the … selfie on the phone.”

35:36 – 35:44 Dr. Young: “You get data, and then information, and then, hopefully, wisdom. And that’s kind of what we’re driving. We want to add some wisdom to the program.”

About Darwin Research Group

Darwin Research Group Inc. provides advanced market intelligence and in-depth customer insights to health care executives, with a strategic focus on health care delivery systems and the global shift toward value-based care. Darwin’s client list includes forward-thinking biopharmaceutical and medical device companies, as well as health care providers, private equity, and venture capital firms. The company was founded in 2010 as Darwin Advisory Partners, LLC and is headquartered in Scottsdale, Ariz. with a satellite office in Princeton, N.J.


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