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Physical & Behavioral Health Integration

Physical and Behavioral Health Integration

In King County, the pathway to full integration is happening in two phases

Fragmentation of the health care system can lead to disjointed care and result in increased health care costs and poor health outcomes.

A key step in achieving the vision of the King County Transformation Plan is addressing this fragmentation, by providing integrated, whole person care that improves outcomes and lowers costs. King County and its community partners are working together to design a system that achieves these goals.

Upcoming events

Washington has reached an agreement with the federal government to implement a five-year Medicaid demonstration waiver aimed at improving how we take care of individuals to better address local health priorities, deliver high-quality, cost-effective care that treats the whole person, and creates linkages between clinical and community-based services. A key component of this effort is transforming the Medicaid delivery system within each region to care for the whole person and use resources more wisely through the Accountable Communities of Health (ACH). As part of this transformation effort, each Accountable Community of Health is required to develop and implements up to eight projects.

The King County ACH and its partners are in the process of scheduling a first round of informational meetings for each project in an effort to understand interest from a broad range of partners and communities, share project-specific requirements, and discuss opportunities for involvement in the project planning.

Register: Physical and Behavioral Health Integration Learning Session
The King County Integration Design Steering Committee (a committee of the King County ACH) is hosting the physical and behavioral health integration project informational meeting. Please join us on February 21, from 2- 4 PM to learn about the state's new Medicaid Transformation Demonstration and implications for physical and behavioral health integration in King County. During this event, you will have an opportunity to learn about the demonstration, the specific requirements for the physical and behavioral health integration project, and how you can be involved in project development in the coming months.

University of Washington Waterfront Activities Center
3710 Montlake Blvd NE
Seattle, WA 98195

Register for this event.
Would you like to be notified about meetings for the other project areas? Learn more and provide your contact information and note which project areas you are interested.

HISTORY: On March 12, 2014, the Washington State Legislature passed legislation that changes the way Medicaid-funded health services will be purchased and delivered in the state.  The legislation calls for the integrated purchasing of behavioral health (mental health and substance use disorder) services through a single managed care contract by April 1, 2016 and for the full integration of physical health and behavioral health by January 1, 2020.  As an initial step in this process, the state legislation called for aligned purchasing to happen in regional services areas across the state- King County is designated as one of these regions.

In King County, the pathway to full integration is happening in two phases: 

  • Integrated mental health and substance use disorder services into one managed care contract through Behavioral Health Organization King County by April 2016.  Read more information about the work to establish Behavioral Health Organization King County.
  • Fully integrated care (physical and behavioral health) by 2020. To ensure that the model of care is one that best meets the needs of our region, King County established and is participating as one of many partners in the Physical and Behavioral Integration Design Committee. 

Relevant Papers and Presentations

Contact us

We want to hear from you about this important work. Send us an email

Join our Physical and Behavioral Health Integration Stakeholder List by emailing us at or Liz Arjun at