The collaborative care workflow allows the HIV physician to keep pace with the demand for their services and focus on treatment of HIV itself.
Integrating the Behavioral Health Care Manager (BHM) and Consulting Psychiatrist (CP) into patient care helps support the emotional, psychological, and social well-being of people living with HIV. In doing so, the care team must recognize that trauma, such as physical and sexual abuse, is more prevalent among HIV patients than those in the general population. These experiences often lead to depression and anxiety. It also results in social isolation, anger, distrust, and substance abuse disorders (SUDs). Providing sensitive and safe trauma-informed care helps to ensure the best possible health outcomes for survivors.
The whole health team benefits from regularly scheduled training on how mental illness, trauma, and SUDs affect the lives of clients and how to sensitively interact with clients who have experienced trauma.
The HIV Physician and CP should conduct training tailored to meet the needs of the medical staff. Assessing needs may be useful to determine appropriate training. Suggested topics include how to recognize, diagnose, and treat depression, suicide and violence risk assessment, identifying and treating post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and identifying and treating bipolar disorder in people living with HIV. These training sessions are useful for the whole HIV team: social workers, nurses, and physicians.