Case study: How Trayt Health supports maternal mental health across Texas

The Partner: Texas Perinatal Psychiatry Access Network

PeriPAN’s team of psychiatrists and specialists provide education and consultation to clinicians in primary care and obstetrics settings. PeriPAN offers clinician-to-clinician consultations related to specific patients or general questions, care coordination, and training.

Trayt Health’s Access Portal serves as the technological backbone for the PeriPAN program, allowing it to connect health institutions and clinicians across the state, while assessing program and population outcomes. 

A ‘national emergency’

Maternal mental health conditions affect nearly 1 in 5 women during pregnancy and postpartum  and nearly a quarter of preventable maternal deaths are caused by such conditions . Yet 75%  of women don’t receive the treatment they need, often due to lack of access, stigma and disparities, gaps in screening, or a shortage of mental health specialists. As with other states, this problem is profound and costly for the state of Texas: it spends about $2.2 billion each year dealing with maternal mental health conditions and their effects. 

The Texas Child Mental Health Care Consortium (TCMHCC) was created by the 86th Texas Legislature in 2019 to leverage the expertise and capacity of the health-related institutions of higher education to address urgent mental health challenges and improve the mental health care system in the state in relation to children and adolescents, while also supporting the mental health of moms caring for children.

PeriPAN helps providers serve moms in need

As one of the Consortium’s five statewide programs, PeriPAN’s mission is clear: equip and educate providers across the state on maternal mental health and offer those providers the chance to collaborate with maternal mental health specialists when they have questions or concerns. OB/GYNs, PCPs or other providers across the state call into PeriPAN, are rapidly connected with a psychiatrist by phone, and receive tailored advice, resources, and referrals for their patients. By equipping clinicians  to serve the mental health needs of their patients, the state expands its overall care capacity and prepares clinicians to screen and intervene on behalf of their patients, including in areas of need. “We are never going to have enough psychiatrists or specialists,” said Dr. Laurel Williams, medical director for centralized operations at the TCMHCC. “We need to ensure that everybody can work to the top of their license, appropriately and safely. Primary care is one of those places.”

A statewide program needs statewide technology

Operating through hubs including Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, Baylor College of Medicine, The University of Texas Dell Medical School, UT Southwestern, and others, PeriPAN has expanded from a pilot model to a statewide program serving all perinatal individuals in the state, reaching a milestone of 1,000 consultations in April 2024. As PeriPAN began, the TCMHCC foresaw a crucial need: a shared technology platform that would standardize the process across its participant institutions, scale staff capacity across the state, and allow the PeriPAN program to measure its impact for patients and populations. As the technology partner with dedicated solutions for state psychiatry Access Programs, Trayt Health was the clear choice.

Trayt’s Access Portal allows clinicians from each hub to track and manage consult requests from not only their assigned region, but from across the state when needed, which maximizes the program’s reach and efficiency. PeriPAN also gains valuable patient-centered information on every encounter and can assess its program through the lenses of geography, demographics, and health equity: while about 40% of consultation requests originated with clinicians  in obstetrics or other dedicated women’s health practices, nearly as many consultations came from general practices across the state including family medicine and pediatrics clinics. Access Programs like PeriPAN help providers of all types meet patients where they are, expanding the opportunities for people to get the care they need regardless of setting.

Trayt’s technology also underpins other TCMHCC initiatives including the Child Psychiatry Access Network (CPAN), which delivers a partner service for children and adolescents, and the Texas Child Health Access Through Telemedicine (TCHATT) program, a statewide school-based direct intervention program. This connects all three programs and their supporting institutions through a coordinated ecosystem of care. “Trayt allows us to connect experts across the state with a single platform to collaborate care for our patients,” says Dr. Sarah Wakefield, chair of the Department of Psychiatry at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center School of Medicine and PeriPAN Medical Director. “Having a secure platform to coordinate treatment is key to the movement of knowledge and in improving patient outcomes.”

To learn more about Trayt Health’s technology and how it can support your Child Psychiatry Access Program or Perinatal Psychiatry Access Program, schedule a demo with our team today.