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bi3 Awards $1.2 Million to Integrate Community-based Mental Health and Primary Care

Posted on: August 26, 2019


CINCINNATI, OH (August 23, 2019) —bi3, Bethesda Inc.’s grantmaking initiative to transform health, announced today it is awarding nearly $1.2 million in grants to Talbert House and Greater Cincinnati Behavioral Health Services. The grants will increase access to services that improve the life expectancy of people with behavioral health disorders and build mental resiliency by adding resources where people already go for care.

“Historically, mental and behavioral healthcare have been separated from physical health, creating barriers, especially for our most vulnerable populations,” said Jill Miller, President of Bethesda Inc.  “However, the body and mind are inextricably linked. That’s why bi3 is investing in new approaches to integrate mental and physical health services and increase access to behavioral health services in community-based organizations.  The result is a healthier community for all of us.”

Grant to Scale Talbert House’s Successful Model of Integrated Care
bi3’s two-year, $940,000 grant will enable Talbert House to open a third Hamilton County primary care clinic that builds on its proven model of integrating physical and behavioral healthcare. The grant also facilitates the development of a health information technology system to improve care coordination.
“It’s troubling to see patients with mental health and substance abuse disorders pass away 25 to 30 years younger than the average life expectancy because they aren’t getting the primary care they need ” said Brad McMonigle, Talbert House Vice President of Mental Health. “This grant gives us the ability to better coordinate the care of the whole patient, mind and body.”
Talbert House has seen the benefits integrating services provides, both in patient outcomes and connecting patients with appropriate places of care.
“A patient with schizophrenia was in the emergency room 20 to 30 times over the last few years — due in part to a mistrust of the system,” McMonigle said. However, partnering the primary care physician with our case manager, who could sit with the patient and calm him, helped build a trusted connection. That patient has had only one emergency visit this year, is maintaining his medications and has a treatment plan he is able to follow.”

Grant to Integrate Behavioral Health Services into Community-Based Organizations
bi3 also awarded a two-year, $216,144 grant to Greater Cincinnati Behavioral Health Services, in partnership with YWCA and Brighton Center, to develop a sustainable model of integrating behavioral health services where patient relationships are already in place.
Through this project, an on-site therapist will provide individual, family and group therapy at community locations. Therapists will also train and educate community service staff to look for and work to prevent adverse effects of emotional trauma.
“We will be able to provide mental health services without people having to overcome the barrier of going somewhere else for help or navigating the stigma of seeking behavioral health services,” said Anne Combs, Vice President of Child and Family Services at Greater Cincinnati Behavioral Health Services. “The bi3 grant enables us to more quickly connect people to needed resources, and train the staff of community-based organizations to understand the impact of trauma.”
The program seeks to increase patients’ resiliency by providing earlier access to behavioral health services and breaking the cycle of intergenerational trauma. Ultimately, it helps patients lead healthier, more productive lives.

To learn more about bi3, its mission, and its grantmaking principles built on ideas, investments and innovation, visit

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About bi3
bi3 is Bethesda Inc.’s forward-looking grantmaking initiative to transform health in Greater Cincinnati. bi3 takes informed risks and invests in new ideas and approaches with the potential to spark and scale health innovation. Ultimately, bi3 seeks to fund and support collaborations and partnerships that lead to breakthrough change in health and healthcare for all people in Greater Cincinnati.

Allison Ryan

On behalf of bi3