June 1, 2006

The Rural Hawai’i Behavioral Health Program: Increasing Access to Primary Care Behavioral Health for Native Hawaiians in Rural Settings

Jill M. Oliveira, A. Aukahi Austin, Robin E.S. Miyamoto,  Joseph Keawe‘aimoku Kaholokula, K. Beth Yano and Travis Lunasco

Professional Psychology: Research & Practice

Health care access issues present significant challenges for rural populations and health providers. Psychology can support improved access and quality of rural health services through the development of integrated behavior health programs within primary care settings. This article reviews a clinical training and service delivery program, the Rural Hawai‘i Behavioral Health Program, which has evolved in response to the pressing health needs of Native Hawaiians in rural communities. Native Hawaiian cultural factors and components of the primary care model that have supported the development of this program will be reviewed. Program expansion, sustainability, and treatment efficacy research will be discussed.

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