Child Psychiatry receives five year $1.42M contract to create Florida Pediatric Behavioral Health Collaborative network

The University of Florida Department of Psychiatry, Division of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry has executed a five year, $1,425,000 contract with the Department of Health, Division of Children’s Medical Services, for the purpose of developing a collaborative care consultation model, and joining a statewide Florida Pediatric Behavioral Health Collaborative network along with USF, FSU, FIU and the University of Miami.

Under Andres J Pumariega, M.D., as Principal Investigator and Medical Director, they have formed a Behavioral Health Hub and partnered with three large (principally rural) primary care pediatric practices through Memoranda of Understanding to serve children ages 3-21 years in north central Florida. The UF Hub is staffed by Drs. Pumariega, Eve Spratt and James Edwards, our Case Manager, Keisha Thornton LCSW, a rotating Psychology Post Doc (presently Dr. Jessica Frantz) and our Program Coordinator, Kati Breton.

Through this collaborative, primary care clinicians and children in underserved communities have increased access to the expertise provided by our child psychiatrists.  The Hub team provides psychiatric and psychological consultation on diagnosis and treatment planning, psychosocial assessment, case management services to connect children and youth to mental health resources.  The participating primary care clinicians are also educated through attendance at monthly, skill-building sessions and empowered to treat, co-treat, and manage the care of these patients within their pediatric practices. As of early April 2020 the primary care clinicians have utilized the PSC-17 screening tool prior to submitting referrals to the Hub.

To date, we have received close to 80 referrals in which we have performed one, or a combination of, the following: case management services, doc-to-doc telephonic encounters, televideo consultations with the child and family, and when appropriate, submitted therapy referrals to a Behavioral Health Organization of the family’s choosing. Four skills building sessions have been conducted (archived on the web and now granting CME credit). The program is working on support of systematic screening to identify children at risk in the practices as well as systematic assessment of level of care needs as outcomes.

For any questions, please see Kati Breton, Program Coordinator, at