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Pilot project launches in support of mental health access in rur - KTVQ.com | Q2 | Continuous News Coverage | Billings, MT

Pilot project launches in support of mental health access in rural Montana

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Governor Bullock announces support for new mental health project Governor Bullock announces support for new mental health project
BILLINGS -

Getting specialized mental health treatment to patients in rural Montana continues to be a significant healthcare challenge for the state.

But a new tele-medicine project based out of Billings Clinic is now ready to help communities that don't have local mental health expertise. 

The pilot project is called ECHO (Extension for Community Health Outcomes). 

The program was first developed in New Mexico to treat patients with Hepatitis C across the state. It has been in place there for 13 years.  

ECHO will now link Billings Clinic with up to 10 doctors offices and health clinics in rural communities throughout the state every week.  

The project launch by Billings Clinic took more than a year to come about. It includes the support of Gov. Steve Bullock, as well as other health centers and insurance companies across Montana.

“Montana kids, families and communities always deserve the best health care available,” said Bullock on Wednesday during the announcement. “Here in Montana we have brought Democrats and Republicans together to improve access to healthcare services all across the state. I’m pleased to support this pilot project that will bring high-quality and affordable mental healthcare to Montanans – wherever they live.”

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