NPHI Publishes Mental and Behavioral Health Community Counseling Resource Guide

Washington, D.C. – At the recent NPHI annual summit, the National Partnership for Healthcare and Hospice Innovation (NPHI)’s Innovation Lab unveiled a resource guide to assist member programs with creating and operating non-hospice community counseling services in their respective communities. The Community Counseling: Grief, Loss, and Bereavement Services Guide includes detailed information on providing high-quality screening and assessment of bereavement needs, recommended tools for assessing outcomes, suggested methods for billing, as well as other best practices. In addition to providing these resources, the Community Counseling Guide sets out to leverage existing expertise and provide tools to help all members grow their counseling programs.

“We are incredibly proud to share the valuable tools and resources within the Community Counseling Guide with NPHI members across the country,” Natasha S. Walsh, LCSW, PCC, Executive Director, Rockbridge Area Hospice says. “Before COVID-19 we were seeing a concerning rise in behavioral and mental health acuity, which has only been exacerbated by the pandemic. Moreover, access to the support needed to respond to this crisis is in short supply, highlighting the opportunity for our member organizations to share their expertise in dealing with grief and loss.”

The COVID-19 pandemic, resulting in nearly one million deaths in the United States alone, has contributed to the increase in the prevalence of behavioral and mental illnesses. Notably, adults reporting symptoms of anxiety and/or depression during the pandemic has nearly quadrupled to 41.1%. The Community Counseling Guide is released during this critical time because NPHI believes that it is an ethical imperative to not only recognize excellent counseling services, but to also share best practices so all NPHI member community counseling programs can be supported and sustained through the pandemic and into the future.

“On behalf of the NPHI Innovation Lab, I am extremely proud to share the Community Counseling Guide, which aligns with our prioritization of high value health care and sustainability of community-based programs,” Dr. Cameron Muir, Chief Innovation Officer, NPHI states. “As health care reimbursement evolves from the fee-for-service standard to value-base care, I am confident that this set of resources, created by those on the front lines, will help NPHI member programs deliver urgently needed and high-quality community counseling services across the country.”

The Community Counseling Guide can be found on the NPHI Member Portal for use by member programs. This guide was made possible thanks to the input of numerous subject matter experts across various NPHI member programs who saw a need in their respective communities and worked tirelessly to produce a consensus set of recommendations. For more information regarding NPHI, please visit or call 1-844-GET NPHI (438-6744) with any questions.

The National Partnership for Healthcare and Hospice Innovation (NPHI)’s Innovation Lab is designed to facilitate opportunities for member organizations by developing new strategies and business models for innovative medical and non-medical lines of service. By supporting the development of these services, the Innovation Lab seeks to offer a platform for service line diversification based on the mutual experiences of our member organizations.

The National Partnership for Healthcare and Hospice Innovation (NPHI) is a collaborative of 80+ not-for-profit, community-integrated hospice and palliative care providers dedicated to ensuring patients and their families have access to care that reflects their individual goals, values, and preferences. Representing providers from 34 states and the District of Columbia, NPHI and its members help design more innovative and effective models of care, advocate for comprehensive and community-integrated care customized to meet each person’s unique needs, and build collaboration between national thought leaders, decision-makers, and other healthcare stakeholders to improve hospice care.