Chuck Ingoglia, vice president for public policy at the National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare , tells Modern Healthcare reporter Jessica Zigmond in an exclusive interview how the Veterans Affairs Departments growing demand for behavioral healthcare providers is creating a shortage of such professionals in the private sector and what can be done to level the recruitment playing field.
[00:00:01.23] Woman's Voice: Welcome to this edition of Special Report Extra, brought to you by Modern Healthcare, and powered by Martopia. With each edition of Special Report Extra, listeners hear directly from key healthcare executives involved in the major events shaping the industry.
[00:00:28.10] Jessica Zigmond: This is Jessica Zigmond, and I'm a reporter with Modern Healthcare magazine. Today we're speaking with Chuck Ingoglia, vice president of public policy at the National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare, based in Rockville, Md. The topic today is veterans' behavioral healthcare, which is featured in the Feb. 18 edition of Modern Healthcare magazine. Thank you, Chuck, for being with us. Our first question today is, how and when did you learn that the VA's recruitment efforts were placing a strain on your members?
[00:00:57.10] Chuck Ingoglia: Well, Jessica, we have heard for a while that our members were having some problems with the VA and in December (2007), we asked a very specific question, and heard from members in 22 states that they were losing staff to the VA.
[00:01:10.18] Jessica Zigmond: What do you think would be a more effective solution for the VA and community providers?
[00:01:16.10] Chuck Ingoglia: Well, Jessica, the strain seems to be particular in rural areas where the VA is working to expand their capacity rather quickly, and we think that a more effective solution would be for the VA to partner with existing community organizations.
[00:01:30.15] Jessica Zigmond: I understand that in Maine, the community counseling center in Portland works with both the Maine National Guard and the VA to ensure that returning service members have access to mental-health services they need. Do you think this is effective because it's a small state, or could it serve as a model for other states?
[00:01:45.15] Chuck Ingoglia: The approach in Maine certainly is a model that we would encourage the VA to look at. In addition to Maine, we also know that, of an approach in Montana, where the VA is working with community mental-health organizations, rather than trying to expand its own capacity. We think this is the right approach, it's an approach that Sens. (Pete) Domenici (R-N.M.) and (Barack) Obama (D-Ill.) have proposed in a Senate Bill 38, and one that we hope the VA will take a serious look at.
[00:02:10.13] Jessica Zigmond: Well, thank you very much. This has been Jessica Zigmond, with Modern Healthcare magazine, and we've been talking with Chuck Ingoglia, with the National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare. To learn more about this issue, you can look at the Feb. 18 edition of Modern Healthcare magazine. Thank you, Chuck.
[00:02:26.10] Chuck Ingoglia: Thank you.
[00:02:27.23] Woman's Voice: Thank you for listening to this edition of Special Report Extra, brought to you by Modern Healthcare and powered by Martopia. Listen to other editions of Special Report Extra by visiting the Multimedia section of Modern Healthcare Online at modernhealthcare.com
Running Time: 2 minutes, 27 seconds