- Adolescents with severe mental illness who continued to see their primary care physician (PCP) as they transitioned to adult mental health care had significantly lower rates of mental health-related hospitalizations and emergency department (ED) visits than those who discontinued seeing their PCP or those who had no PCP.
Why this matters
- Continuity of access to PCPs could improve the long-term outcomes for mental health patients as they transition from adolescence to early adulthood.
- Population-based cohort study included 8409 adolescents (age, 12-16 years) with a history of hospitalization >72 hours for a severe mental illness.
- Funding: Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care.
- During the transition period, 65.1% of adolescents received continuous primary care, 28.4% received discontinuous primary care, and 6.4% received no primary care.
- Higher rates of mental health-related admissions were noted in adolescents receiving:
- discontinuous primary care (adjusted relative rate [aRR], 1.20; 95% CI, 1.10-1.30);
- no primary care (aRR, 1.30; 95% CI, 1.08-1.56).
- Higher rates of mental health-related ED visits were noted with discontinuous primary care (aRR, 1.16; 95% CI, 1.08-1.26).
- Limited generalizability of findings.
Coauthored with Chitra Ravi, MPharm