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Mountain Plains Staff Receive Interdisciplinary Collaboration Award

Mountain Plains Mental Health Technology Transfer Center
Publication Date: Mar 01, 2021

Mountain Plains Staff Receive Interdisciplinary Collaboration Award


Mountain Plains Mental Health Technology Transfer Center (MHTTC) staff members Andrew McLean, MD, MPH, Shawnda Schroeder, PhD, MA, and Thomasine Heitkamp, LCSW, have received the University of North Dakota (UND) Award for Interdisciplinary Collaboration in Research and Creative Activity for their work on the Behavioral Health Bridge project. Stephen Wonderlich, PhD, President of Research at Sanford Health in Fargo also received the award. The award is part of UND Founders Day, an annual celebration of the university's history as an institution. Founders Day marks the anniversary of the signing of the Dakota Territory legislation and is the official birthday of UND. 

 

The Behavioral Health Bridge is a free website that provides scientifically and clinically validated information about behavioral health during the pandemic. A series of free online modules are designed to help individuals experiencing common behavioral health conditions related to COVID-19 and promote behavioral health treatment to address current community needs.

 

The program had earnest beginnings. After a discussion about the potential long-term impact of COVID-19 between McLean and Wonderlich, the pair reached out to Heitkamp and Schroeder for their expertise in strategies to enhance mental health — strategies that have guided their work at Mountain Plains MHTTC. Further discussions led to a partnership with Sanford Health in Fargo, ND, in order to emphasize the local response of the program. An idea that began with only four individuals led to the creation of the Behavioral Health Bridge, which currently has an interdisciplinary team of ten professionals.

 

The program is continually updated. The newest features include:

 

  • Ask an Expert - This section of the website highlights common behavioral health questions from the community and provides answers from local experts on the topic.
  • Behavioral Health Screening Tools - This section features self-administered screening tools that can be completed in about 5 minutes. After submitting responses, individuals will be provided with a score and information about recommended next steps.

 


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