The Pandemic-Related Transformation of Behavioral Health Care Delivery: 2022 and Beyond

Activity description

The negative impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the mental health of the U.S. population have been well established; for many, life has been defined as “pre-COVID” and “post-COVID.” The effects of the pandemic on behavioral health care and the delivery of mental health services have also been significant, prompting tremendous change within the delivery system. In this activity, participants will explore the pandemic’s impacts on individuals’ mental health, including the increasing risks for, and prevalence of, stress, anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder, especially for special populations such as front-line personnel (i.e., health care professionals (HCPs), teachers and funeral directors), children and the millennial and geriatric populations. In addition, participants will review the multifaceted effects of the pandemic on the behavioral health care delivery system, specifically regarding access to care, delivery of services and digital health utilization. The implications for current and future utilization of delivery modalities, such as telehealth, behavioral health coaching and other mental health care management strategies will be discussed, taking into consideration the behavioral health care concerns that have emerged during this transitional time in response to the transforming health care landscape and the population’s evolving mental health care needs. 

Provided by
This activity is jointly provided by OptumHealth Education and OptumLabs.

Commercial support
No commercial support was received for this activity.
Required hardware/software
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Target Audience

This activity is designed to meet the educational needs of counselors, educators, nurses, nurse practitioners, pharmacists, pharmacy technicians, PAs, physicians, psychologists, social workers, therapists and other HCPs who have an interest in behavioral health.

Learning Objectives

At the end of this educational activity, participants should be able to:

  • Identify the effects of the COVID-19 epidemic on individuals’ mental health and examine the specific impacts on more vulnerable populations such as front-line personnel, children, millennials and the geriatric population.
  • Describe the multifaceted effects of the COVID-19 epidemic on the behavioral health care delivery system, including its impact on access to care, delivery of services and digital health utilization.
  • Recognize how the roles and applications of delivery modalities such as telehealth, behavioral health coaching and self-management methods continue to transition in response to the pandemic’s transformation of the health care landscape and the population’s mental health needs.
  • Discuss the behavioral health care concerns that have been raised by these recent changes in health care delivery, as well as the likelihood of these issues to impact the quality of behavioral health care and the application of delivery modalities in the future. 

Additional Information

Activity summary
Available credit: 
  • 1.00 ACPE - Pharmacist
  • 1.00 ACPE - Pharmacy Technician
  • 1.00 AMA
  • 1.00 ANCC
  • 1.00 APA
  • 1.00 Attendance
  • 1.00 ASWB
Activity opens: 
Activity expires: 


Rhonda Robinson Beale, MD
Senior Vice President, Deputy Chief Medical Officer
Mental Health Sciences
UnitedHealth Group

About the presenter
Dr. Rhonda Robinson Beale is a seasoned health care executive with over 30 years of experience in health care systems, managed care and quality improvement in behavioral health and medical care. She is the Deputy Chief Medical Officer for Mental Health Services within UnitedHealth Group. Dr. Robinson Beale has served in the past as Senior Vice President, Chief Medical Officer for Blue Cross of Idaho and for several other large national and local health care organizations, such as Optum, PacifiCare, Cigna, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and Health Alliance Plan in Michigan. She has been involved with many national organizations as a subject matter expert, National Institute of Health, National Institute of Mental Health, Institute of Medicine, National Quality Forum, American Psychiatric Association, American Psychological Association, American Society of Addiction Medicine, NCQA and others.

Dr Robinson Beale has served on many national boards, engaged with key committees and workgroups and has been significantly involved in influencing changes in the system. She was on the IOM committee that created “Crossing the Quality Chasm and “To Err is Human.” Dr. Robinson Beale has been involved in influencing local and national legislation particularly around Parity and ACA issues. Her involvements led to her having the opportunity to testify before the Senate’s Health, Education, Labor and Pension Committee (HELP) on the state of behavioral health care.

Activity planners
Sarah Chart, RN
Vice President
OptumHealth Education

Elizabeth Albert, MD
Clinical Activity Manager
OptumHealth Education

Disclosures of relevant financial relationships
In accordance with the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education's (ACCME) Standards for Integrity and Independence in Accredited Continuing Education, OptumHealth Education (OHE) requires all those in control of educational content to disclose their financial relationships with ineligible companies within the prior 24 months. Ineligible companies are defined by the ACCME as companies whose primary business is producing, marketing, selling, re-selling, or distributing health care products used by or on patients. Individuals must disclose all financial relationships, regardless of the amount, with ineligible companies and regardless of their view of the relevance of the relationship to the education. OHE ensures that the content is independent of commercial bias.

The planners and faculty of this activity have no financial relationships to disclose. 

Method for calculating CE credit
CE credit was calculated by the complexity of content.

Accreditation statement
Joint Provider LogoIn support of improving patient care, this activity has been planned and implemented by OptumHealth Education and OptumLabs. OptumHealth Education is jointly accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME), the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE) and the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), to provide continuing education for the health care team.

Credit designation statements
Interprofessional CEThis activity was planned by and for the health care team, and learners will receive 1.00 Interprofessional Continuing Education (IPCE) credits for learning and change.

The participant will be awarded up to 1.00 contact hour(s) of credit for attendance and completion of supplemental materials.

Nurse practitioners
The American Academy of Nurse Practitioners Certification Program (AANPCP) accepts credit from organizations accredited by the ACCME and ANCC.

Pharmacists/Pharmacy technicians
This activity is approved for 1.00 contact hour ([0.10] CEU) in states that recognize ACPE.
Attending the full program will earn 1.00 contact hour.
Unique Activity Number(s): JA0007123-9999-21-204-H04-P/T

OptumHealth Education designates this enduring activity for a maximum of 1.00 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s). Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

The American Academy of Physician Assistants (AAPA) accepts credit from organizations accredited by the ACCME.

OptumHealth Education is approved by the American Psychological Association (APA) to offer continuing education for psychologists. OptumHealth Education maintains responsibility for this program. 1.00 CE hour.

Social workers
ACE LogoAs a Jointly Accredited Organization, OptumHealth Education is approved to offer social work continuing education by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) Approved Continuing Education (ACE) program. Organizations, not individual courses, are approved under this program. State and provincial regulatory boards have the final authority to determine whether an individual course may be accepted for continuing education credit. OptumHealth Education maintains responsibility for this course. Social workers completing this course receive 1.00 enduring continuing education credits.

A certificate of attendance will be provided to learners upon completion of activity requirements, enabling participants to register with licensing boards or associations that have not been preapproved for credits. To apply for credit types not listed above, participants should use the procedure established by the specific organization from which they wish to obtain credit.

Available Credit

  • 1.00 ACPE - Pharmacist
  • 1.00 ACPE - Pharmacy Technician
  • 1.00 AMA
  • 1.00 ANCC
  • 1.00 APA
  • 1.00 Attendance
  • 1.00 ASWB
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