Whole Person Integrated Care

What Providers Need to Know

Integrating various types of health care—specifically physical and behavioral health care–has been a topic for many years.  So, how is Whole Person Integrated Care, or WPIC, different from the current integrated care model?

Whole Person Integrated Care (WPIC) is a new model that expands the concept of integrated care beyond the health sectors. WPIC adapts the Collaborative Care Model to include socially driven needs and peer engagement into a whole person care approach.

The pivot toward achievement of the Quadruple Aim requires those who manage and provide care to re-envision the components and processes of health delivery. Integration of research in neuroscience, social epidemiology, public health and the behavioral sciences create new opportunities to advance Whole Person and Value Based Care.  WPIC leverages these advances to create a new model of comprehensive care by using research-based elements that positively affect behavioral and overall health, reduce health disparities, and optimize community resources.

WPIC is composed of three infrastructure “tiers”, with the overarching goal of achieving the Quadruple Aim:

Integrated health care practices that adopt Whole Person Integrated Care (WPIC) incorporate research-informed methods to improve care. This includes the Collaborative Care Model (a product of University of Washington’s AIMs Center), a team-based approach that has been proven to improve health outcomes and reduce unnecessary costs. In WPIC, the Collaborative Care Model (CCM) is augmented to include two additional elements: peer engagement and support (known to improve participation and health outcomes) and direct attention to Social Determinants of Health (SDOH), known to impact 60% of a person’s health status.  Each member in the practice would see appropriate behavioral and medical health professionals, and also be introduced to a peer to help support active participation in their care, help navigate the service system, and promote the role of the member as a full partner in all health care planning and decisions. The peer is also instrumental in helping identify and address SDOH that impede the member’s success in achieving wellness. Through these approaches WPIC strengthens the role and impact of the medical/health home as a relevant and accessible center of health and wellness for each of its members.

There are many groups and agencies working to improve the health of citizens. One of the best ways to impact a community’s health is through information and resource sharing.  One component of WPIC is the development of a community health forum in each community so that medical practices, behavioral health agencies, and community partners can create a collective health care vision and share resources, solutions, and collaborative learning opportunities. The forum will promote robust partnerships among the Tier 1 partners and community, will advance the WPIC model, and provide results-based collaboration as identified through the data compiled from evaluation methods The Collective Impact model supports and guides implementation of Tier Two.

Tier 3 strategically connects the initiative to the broader community. At this point, Partners, along with members, behavioral health and medical providers, members and other stakeholders, and the community health forums will collaborate and develop a collaborative group and Time Bank that advances individual and community resiliency, and impacts the social determinants of health so that people become and stay healthy.  The resources will be unique to each network’s population.

Want to Learn More?

More information about Whole Person Integrated Care is available in the white paper, “Whole Person Integrated Care Model: Advancing the Quadruple Aim and Community Wellness”. Partners has begun implementing the Whole Person Integrated Care Model at its Integrated Care Centers, beginning with Burke Integrated Health. As the model is developed, we will provide more information on this web page.