Rural Mental Health Integration Initiative

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Behavioral health conditions are expected to increase and worsen as a result of COVID-19. According to a survey conducted by the American Psychiatric Association, 36% of respondents said that COVID-19 is "seriously affecting their mental health" and most (59%) said it's having a serious impact on their daily life (1). Primary care is likely to see many of these patients. 

Collaborative Care (CoCM) is a model for integrated behavioral health with a strong evidence base for treating common mental health conditions like depression and anxiety in primary care settings (2). CoCM has proven to be effective when delivered via telehealth, either in part or wholly (3). 


Poor mental health is a major public health issue, affecting millions of people in their pursuit to lead optimal emotional, social, and professional lives. Depression alone can worsen other medical conditions, often doubling over-all healthcare costs, and result in a staggering loss of productivity at work and in the home. In underserved rural areas in Washington and Alaska, a severe shortage of mental health providers compounds these problems.

The AIMS Center is partnering with Premera to support up to 30 clinics in rural Washington and Alaska to expand access to evidence-based mental health treatment. Selected clinics will receive up to $245,000 over 15 months to defray participation costs. 

AIMS Caseload Tracker

All participating clinics are granted free access to the AIMS Caseload Tracker registry. Participating clinics must use the registry and complete a license agreement with the University of Washington to use it. View and download the software use agreement ("Premera AIMS Caseload Tracker License") at the link below. 

Cohort 3

We are currently accepting applications for Cohort 3. More clinics are eligible to apply. View section 2 of the RFA for complete eligibility details and Appendix A for ineligible zip codes. Please read all of the information below before completing any application materials. 

Do you know of an organization or clinic who would be interested in this opportunity? Feel free to download and share our flyer. 

Request for Applications 

This document outlines the initiative scope, key components of the training and coaching process, and application requirements. Appendix A lists all ineligible zip codes. Please refer to Section 6 of the RFA to ensure you've completed all steps of the application process with correct formatting. 

  • RFA: Cohort 3
  • Note: 
    • Eligible clinics must have served at least 1,500 unique patients age 18 or older in primary care in the most recent reporting year. 
    • Clinics do not need to have any patients served by Premera in order to apply. 
    • Organizations applying on behalf of multiple sites should submit separate applications for each site. 
    • RMHII staff may revise the Request for Applications as needed. Please check the lower left-hand corner of the RFA for the date it was last updated to ensure you are working from the latest version. 

Application Materials 

Application Due Date:

March 28, 2021, 11:59 PM Pacific 

  • Email complete applications to 
  • The AIMS Center will not consider any applications submitted after this deadline. 


The AIMS Center hosted a webinar for potential applicants that summarized the Rural Mental Health Integration Initiative opportunity and answered questions received to date. View the full recording and informational slides below. 


See our Frequently Asked Questions for Applicants. You can also view the above webinar for more information on the project. 


Participating Cohorts

Congratulations to the primary care clinics selected to participate in the first two cohorts of the Rural Mental Health Integration Initiative! The following clinics are committed to implementing high quality, evidence-based integrated care in their rural communities:

Cohort 1

Cohort 2

Last updated: 1/8/2021

1. High Anxiety in America over COVID-19 - MedScape - Mar 28, 2020.

2. Archer, J. et al. (2012) Collaborative care for people with anxiety and depression. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. Issue 10. Art. No.: CD006525. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD006525.pub2

3. Fortney, J. et al. (2013) Practice-based versus telemedicine-based collaborative care for depression in rural federally qualified health centers: a pragmatic randomized comparative effectiveness trial. 

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