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PCBH Training and Education

The Psychological Health Center of Excellence (PHCoE) develops training programs and materials to support Defense Department (DOD) primary care personnel. Currently, PHCoE provides intensive multi-day provider training for those individuals filling the roles of Behavioral Health Care Facilitator (BHCF) and Behavioral Health Consultant (BHC). Training content is delivered through webinars, face-to-face instruction, hands-on interactive role play, and mentoring over the phone.

BHCF Training

BHCF training begins with a series of four webinars designed to introduce:

  • The Primary Care Behavioral Health (PCBH) Combined model
  • The protocol used to contact patients for care facilitation
  • Relevant evidence-based information that supports and enhances BHCF conversations with providers and patients
  • Techniques that actively engage patients in self-care management to improve patient symptoms and overall health

Following the webinars, BHCF trainees participate in a week-long, face-to-face training that incorporates the webinar series content into group discussions and hands-on application of evidence-based information, concepts and techniques. In addition, trainees receive instruction for and participate in hands-on application of the web-based tool used to collect and manage individual case-related information (FIRST-STEPS). Trainees are provided multiple opportunities to practice using the tool during simulated phone interactions with patients.

At the conclusion of BHCF training, trainees complete a practical exam that showcases their skills using the practicum concepts and procedures, relevant evidence-based information, motivational interviewing, as well as incorporating effective problem solving and clinical expertise. These skills are evaluated against a series of core competencies. Click here for the BHCF Core Competency Tool.

BHC Training


BHC training begins with a series of six orientation webinars, reading materials, and clinic-shadowing tasks designed to introduce BHCs to integrated primary care and other key concepts such as ethics and PCBH, military cultural competency, documentation in the DOD’s electronic health record, and mobile apps for BHCs.

Phase I Training

Following the webinars, BHC trainees participate in a week-long training that builds on the orientation concepts with a series of role plays and ethical consideration vignettes, as well as additional didactics on the topics of using the BHM-20, overview of suicide risk assessment and management, and strategies for management of depression.

At the conclusion of BHC training, trainees demonstrate their skills during role play and are evaluated against a series of core competencies.

Phase I Follow-on Training

New BHCs who have completed Phase I training attend four additional training webinars on PCBH team functioning, BHC practice management, conducting psychoeducational classes, and military cultural competency.

Phase II Consultation and Site Visit

BHCs receive additional implementation support and mentoring in the early months following Phase I training:

  • Six individual phone mentorship appointments with a BHC expert trainer.
  • A site visit from a BHC expert trainer for additional guidance and demonstration of BHC core competencies.

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Last Updated: July 11, 2023
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