Chronic disease and mental illness affects a multitude of individuals in the United States. Sufficient treatments exist for chronic diseases and mental illnesses, separately. However, a gap in care exists in individuals who have co-occurring conditions. The presence of one or more chronic conditions, or comorbidities, has been observed by several providers, yet there is a crucial need for integrated care in the case of chronically diseased individuals with mental illness. Increasing quality of life within this vulnerable population is a necessity. The purpose of this systematic review is to determine whether integrated care and collaboration between behavioral health and primary care practitioners would increase quality of life within individuals with a chronic disease and a mental illness. The implementation of integrated care, evidence-based practices, and holistically practices may provide a successful route of effective treatment within individuals with comorbidities. Researchers in a Texan study discovered that patients benefitted remarkably from the integration between mental health and primary care practices. The utilization of proper screening tools and inclusion of social and behavioral sciences in medical school curricula would afford providers in different disciplines to carry out integration techniques. While integration and collaboration could mark increase in quality of life within individuals with comorbidities, limitations like lack of funding, lack of resources, and lack of time could be a barrier in implementing integration techniques in practice.

Semester/Year of Award

Spring 2020


Michelyn W. Bhandari

Mentor Professional Affiliation

Department of Health Promotion and Administration

Access Options

Open Access Thesis

Degree Name

Honors Scholars


Health Promotion and Administration