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Spotlight: Introducing a New Integrated Behavioral Health MSW Stipend Program

4-year, $1.75 million grant to develop San Francisco Bay Area Integrated Behavioral Health MSW Stipend Program

CalSWEC Spotlight summarizes the latest developments in program initiatives and activities of interest to CalSWEC's community. This month, Dr. E. Maxwell Davis, CalSWEC's Director of the Integrated Behavioral Health Program, gives us the latest news from her team.

October 3, 2017

CalSWEC is the recipient of a $1.75 million grant through the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Behavioral Health Workforce Education and Training (BHWET) initiative to develop and expand the behavioral health workforce serving medically underserved areas and populations across the lifespan. The funding period for the grant begins September 30.

The new San Francisco Bay Area Integrated Behavioral Health (IBH) MSW Stipend Program will provide stipends and interdisciplinary training for MSW student interns, faculty, and field supervisors at four Bay Area universities, focused on enhancing the provision of behavioral health care services in integrated care settings. The goal of this project is to expand regional capacity to provide high-quality behavioral health services to communities in need through greater integration of primary and behavioral health care.

Key features of the SF Bay Area IBH MSW Stipend Program include:

  • A regionally organized plan to develop IBH field placements at sites most heavily affected by increased Medi-Cal enrollments via the Affordable Care Act.
  • CalSWEC’s coordination of the program with four Bay Area MSW programs: UC Berkeley, CSU, East Bay, San Francisco State University, and San José State University.
  • The support of a total of 21 stipends during academic year 2017–18 and 30 stipends each during academic years 2018–19, 2019–20, and 2020–21.
  • A focus on establishing new MSW field placements in integrated behavioral health care settings, providing interdisciplinary learning experiences in integrated care to stipend recipients, and providing inter-professional trainings for trainers and educators to instructional faculty, field supervisors, and interdisciplinary collaborators.

This new program expands on the accomplishments of Berkeley Social Welfare, which was awarded a HRSA BHWET grant in 2014 focused on IBH training for MSW students serving children and adolescents. Through that project, Berkeley Social Welfare developed a program model that has yielded new field placements and collaborative training relationships, and strong curricular and training materials to support MSW students, faculty, and field instructors in IBH settings.

Preparing IBH students for collaborative health care settings

Through the San Francisco Bay Area Integrated Behavioral Health MSW Stipend Program, CalSWEC will expand that work to students and settings serving populations across the lifespan and facilitate wider regional dissemination and adaptation of the IBH training model.

The participating campuses, situated in diverse urban, suburban, and rural settings, together serve a population of over 7.4 million Bay Area residents through the annual placement of roughly 300 advanced MSW students in nine Bay Area counties. Each program works closely with many non-profit and public agencies that serve distinct vulnerable and medically underserved communities and areas.

Read other CalSWEC Spotlight articles 

Through this program, each school’s field program will continue to grow and strengthen integrated behavioral health field placement opportunities for their students, and work with agencies to strengthen the inter-professional nature of the training provided to interns. As more Bay Area agencies adopt the IBH model, MSWs trained through this program will be well equipped to become leaders in collaborative, multi-disciplinary integrated behavioral health care settings.

For more information, please contact Project Director Dr. E. Maxwell Davis, emdavis@berkeley.edu.