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Integrating Behavioral Health and Primary Care for Youth and Young Adults: Recommendations and Resources for Providers in California and Beyond

2010 | Download

Behavioral health care for youth and young adults presents challenges for a variety of health providers. Behavioral health problems are often complex, and providers are concerned about their level of training, the availability of resources, and adequate reimbursement. Many tools and models have recently been developed to address the need for integrating behavioral health and primary care, along with numerous approaches and strategies.

This brief will provide a general outline of available recommendations and resources, in order to assist health providers in their efforts to initiate or advance integrated care for adolescents in California and beyond. 

Download the brief. 


The Adolescent Health Working Group (AHWG) was formed in 1996 by a group of adolescent health providers and youth advocates concerned about the lack of ageappropriate health services in the city of San Francisco. Today, the AHWG remains the only group if its kind in San Francisco. The AHWG’s vision is that all youth have unimpeded access to high quality, culturally competent, youth friendly health services. The AHWG’s mission is to support and strengthen the network of providers working to improve adolescent health. The AHWG’s works to fulfill its vision and mission through the following core functions: 1) develop tools and trainings that increase providers’ capacity to effectively serve youth, 2) advocate for policies that increase access to health insurance and comprehensive care, 3) convene stakeholders and coordinate linkages across systems to improve information sharing, networking and referral for youth services.

California Adolescent Health Collaborative (CAHC), a project of The Public Health Institute, is a public-private statewide collaborative with the goal of increasing understanding and support for adolescent health and wellness in California. CAHC’s vision is that adolescents and young adults from all California communities are living healthy lives and pursuing positive life options with resources, support, and opportunities from families, communities, schools, and service systems. Core functions include: 1) curriculum development, training, and technical assistance to strengthen the capacity of providers and systems; 2) publications to increase awareness of providers and policymakers and improve policy and practice; 3) advocacy to keep the health and well being of adolescents central to public debate and decision-making; and 4) collaborative development to strengthen partnerships between different disciplines through a common commitment to adolescent health. Learn more.