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What is a Patient Health Questionnaire?

Jul 27, 2021 / by Holly Wilson

If you've come here looking to learn more about patient health questionnaires used to assess mental and behavioral health disorders, you're in the right place. This blog provides information that helps answer the common question "What is a patient health questionnaire?" We'll discuss one of the most common patient health questionnaires and how it's scored and then briefly touch on a popular variant of this patient mental health screener. 



More importantly, though, we'll provide an overview of why commonly used patient health questionnaires are coming up short. We'll conclude the piece by sharing some of the key qualities that providers should look for when choosing a better alternative to these flawed solutions.

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Substance Use Disorder: A Disease of Epic Proportions

Jul 9, 2021 / by Taylor Jenkins - nView Health Editor


Among the most tragic impacts of the global pandemic has been the skyrocketing rise of substance abuse among adults and adolescents. Deaths due to overdoses have hit all-time highs exacerbating a substance use disorder problem that was a crisis pre-pandemic in the country with addiction affecting 1 in every 3 families. In fact, on October 26, 2017, the US Department of Health and Human Services declared the opioid crisis a Public Health Emergency and began pouring billions of dollars into grants to help fight this rapidly growing epidemic.

Also in 2017, the US Surgeon General issued a report entitled, “Facing Addiction in America: A Spotlight on Opioids” that served as a foundation for communicating the federal government’s comprehensive, multi-faceted approach, which included:

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The Importance of Evidence-Based Solutions in Behavioral Health: Q&A With Dr. Josh Spitalnick

Jul 1, 2021 / by Taylor Jenkins - nView Health Editor

Evidence is defined as, “The available body of facts or information indicating whether a belief or proposition is true or valid.” Using evidence-based behavioral health tools is the topic of today’s post.

With literally thousands of behavioral health assessment tools on the market, it’s important for mental health specialists and physicians to find solutions that are based on evidence.

Unlike physical health, where evaluation tools like an X-ray of a broken bone or an echocardiogram of a heart can be used to identify physical characteristics, mental health assessment involves patient-reported symptoms, not physical facts. It can be challenging for patients to communicate their feelings and fears, which in turn makes it challenging for mental health specialists to identify and properly diagnose the disorder.


Q&A with Dr. Josh Spitalnick

To properly diagnose a patient with a behavioral health disorder, like anxiety, depression, schizophrenia, or PTSD, specialists must use evidence-based assessment tools. Josh Spitalnick, PhD, ABPP is a licensed psychologist and anxiety and OCD expert, who shared his insights on this topic recently in a Mental Healthcare Today podcast. He is board-certified in behavioral and cognitive psychology, clinical director and owner of Anxiety Specialists of Atlanta (one of the largest anxiety clinics in the southeast), and an adjunct professor of psychiatry at Emory University. Here is what he had to say on the topic of evidence-based instruments.

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The State of Mental Health in Rural America: Why and How Technology Can Help

Jun 28, 2021 / by Jim Szyperski

The state of mental health in America is in crisis and was in crisis before the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the National Institutes of Health, pre-pandemic:

  • 1 in 5 Americans suffered from a mental disorder each year,
  • 1 in 17 suffered from a serious mental disorder each year, and
  • there was a 35% increase in suicides in the past 15 years with suicide being the second-leading cause of death between the ages of 10 and 34.

The pre-pandemic statistics for our children are more troubling as:

The problem is even more severe in rural America as the graphic below depicts where approximately 50% of counties in the US lack a resident psychiatrist, 65% of non-metropolitan US counties lack a psychiatrist, and 47% lack a psychologist. (Source: The American Journal of Preventive Medicine, Geographic Variation in the Supply of Selected Behavioral Health Providers)

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The Identification and Treatment of OCD: Q&A Session with Dr. Eric Storch

Jun 23, 2021 / by Taylor Jenkins - nView Health Editor

Dr. Eric Storch is Professor and McIngvale Presidential Endowed Chair at the Baylor College of Medicine. Dr. Storch specializes in the cognitive-behavioral treatment of adult and childhood obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), as well as other anxiety and OCD-related disorders.

Dr. Storch has been the principal investigator on multiple federally funded grants, is a Fulbright Scholar, and has published 12 books and 500 peer-reviewed articles. He is on the IOCDF Scientific Advisory Board and is the Chair of the Pediatric Behavior Therapy Institute.

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Press Release: Multi-year License Agreement with IQVIA

Jun 3, 2021 / by Taylor Jenkins - nView Health Editor

nView Health Announces Multi-year License Agreement with IQVIA

Software company to provide a leading clinical research organization with a comprehensive suite of behavioral health psychometric assessment solutions.

June 3, 2021, Atlanta – nView Health, the premier provider of evidence-based behavioral health assessment solutions, is pleased to announce that it has executed a multi-year license agreement with IQVIA, one of the world’s leading clinical research organizations. Under the terms of the Agreement, IQVIA will have access to the complete set of nView’s behavioral health assessment and severity measurement solutions to use on IQVIA’s digital eCOA platform.

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Challenges and Opportunities for Mental Health: Q&A With Hansa Bhargava, MD

May 20, 2021 / by Taylor Jenkins - nView Health Editor

Hansa Bhargava, MD, is a staff physician at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, senior medical director with WebMD, and chief medical officer at Medscape Education. As a thought leader in innovation, mental health, maternity, and pediatrics, Dr. Bhargava often speaks on using current digital footprints to elevate data and education to help disparities, opioid addiction, and mental health.

She is currently on the board for the Emory University Global Health Institute and Christopher Wolfe Foundation and is an executive member of the committee on communications and media for the American Academy of Pediatrics.

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Mental Health Assessments: It’s Important to Know the Difference

May 13, 2021 / by Taylor Jenkins - nView Health Editor

The world of mental health assessment and screening tools can be very complicated for practitioners to navigate. Many tools, like the PHQ-9 and the GAD-7, simply screen for symptoms of one or two conditions, requiring the practitioner to predetermine the potential diagnosis and therefore creating bias from the start.

Other tools, like the SCID, are not dynamically responsive to patient answers and therefore require patients to respond to irrelevant questions, creating frustration and wasting valuable time. Use of the SCID can also be cost-prohibitive for many mental health practices.

The bottom line is that most of today’s mental health assessment solutions are flawed, and instead of helping to support an accurate diagnosis, they end up being an impediment to practitioners and patients.

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nView’s CEO on Mental Health Month

May 7, 2021 / by Jim Szyperski

Turning Awareness into Action (Jim Szyperski)

May is upon us, which means it’s Mental Health Month again. I think back to last May when we were still early into the pandemic’s onslaught on our collective brains. The stress, fear, and anxiety of a pandemic; the quarantine and isolation; the loss of employment and income; and the pervasive uncertainty about the health of our families and friends were all top of mind. Talk of a vaccine by the end of 2020 or early 2021 seemed a long way off with daily cases of COVID-19 rising and the death toll alarmingly accumulating.

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Press Release: Mental Health Month

May 3, 2021 / by Holly Wilson

nView Health Declares Mental Health Month a Time for Action

Company leaders call for meaningful dialogue and concrete change that can put the country on a path to repairing our broken mental health system.


Mental healthcare thought leaders, including nView Health‘s own Chief Medical Officer and Founder Thomas Young, MD, have witnessed first-hand how our healthcare system fails to accurately identify and properly diagnose individuals who need behavioral health assistance. And in the minority of instances where a patient is correctly diagnosed, our healthcare system then fails to adequately support them.

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