The Referral Network

The Building Blocks for a Referral Network: TPN.Health Endorsement

When you endorse another TPN.Health member, you’re saying, “I have worked with this provider and know that they are providing a quality of care that is worthy of a referral.” The feature allows you to endorse a provider for a specific specialization and write a note if you have more to say about the provider. In a future iteration of the endorsement, you will be able to endorse not only for specializations but for focus issues and modalities as well.

If you endorse another member, it is noted on their clinical profile. For example, Jessica Gibson Kendrick, LPC, has received an endorsement from Dr. Patrick Bordnick, and this is visible to any TPN.Health member who finds Jessica Kendrick’s profile.

The Referral Network

Since TPN.Health launched in August of 2019, we have received invaluable input from our community that is enabling us to build a more efficient platform. We have discovered that behind the referral process are accessible referral networks consisting of living relationships among providers. From a conversation between TPN.Health member Tanya Stuart, LCSW-BACS, LAC, CCS and TPN.Health CEO, Trevor Colhoun, it was clear that there was a need for a more efficient way to build and track those relationships. And, perhaps, TPN.Health could provide the solution.

Over years in practice, Tanya has been tracking her relationships with the providers she trusts in an excel spreadsheet. She keeps the sheet updated with current information on the providers and uses it to make referrals and field calls from other providers. In this way, Tanya has created her own referral process by painstakingly recording her network’s data as it evolves. Likewise, she is the point-person for others who need access to the data. When Tanya approached Trevor with this information, he proposed that TPN.Health could build in a feature that would alleviate the grunt-work and headache of this process.

The solution: referral networks. In a nutshell, referral networks are an aggregate of all the providers you endorse made visible to your network in a list on your TPN.Health clinical profile. How it works: All the providers on Tanya’s analog list individually create their own TPN.Health clinical profiles. Tanya’s only work then is to endorse them for their specializations in TPN.Health. After she endorses them, their profiles appear in a list visible on Tanya’s clinical profile. In this way, the pool serves as a visible representation of the analog relationships that Tanya has worked to build and track for so long. No more fielding calls or hunting for updates on providers’ information. 

The launch of the referral network as a TPN.Health feature is especially exciting because it is a key feature in building out not only your personal network in TPN.Health but the network as a whole. A provider, such as Tanya, who already has an expansive analog referral network can bring their network into the digital space of TPN.Health. Simply by utilizing the endorsement feature in TPN.Health, a provider is enabled to track their referral network and make it available to other providers with a click of a button. In a similar way, a provider who perhaps is new to the field and does not have a large analog network, can create the foundation for their referral processes with access to the expansive referral networks of more experienced providers. Trevor Colhoun comments that the endorsement pool’s capacity to build and track connections within TPN.Health is directly serving our mission to bring the trusted providers across the expanse of the field under one accessible umbrella. 

The essence of the referral network is that it serves as another layer supporting providers’ navigation of behavioral health field processes through TPN.Health. We’re excited to keep building these layers into the platform! Stay tuned.

Endorsement Pool FAQs:

      1. Where is my referral network? 

Your referral network is found on your profile under “Sent” Clinician Endorsements. 

The endorsement pool can also be found underneath Referral Stats on your Profile Overview tab.

      2. Who can see my referral network? 

Your referral network lives on your clinical profile, so you will always be able to see it. TPN.Health members with whom you are connected can also see it. 

**Note** In a future iteration, members that want access to your referral network will need to be connected to you, and you will have the option to grant them access to view your pool. We know that you have worked to build these relationships and want to give you as much agency as possible in your choices when sharing this information with other providers.

     3. Can I search within another providers referral network? 

Once you are connected to the provider, you will be able use a filter-search, similar to the standard clinician filter-search, within that provider’s endorsement pool. This feature is coming soon.

Click here to begin building a trusted referral network in TPN.Health!

Building Your Network in TPN.Health

“By clinicians for clinicians.”

TPN.Health is a collaborative and comprehensive platform. The platform serves as a digital network-secure tool which serves to support the work of professionals navigating behavioral health systems. We have discovered the value of an effective tool can be accredited to community engagement, and we seek to create a community that promotes intentional engagement with TPN.Health digital features. These features, such as the personalized clinical profile and the endorsement, enable members to actually build an accessible network of trusted professionals within the digital space of TPN.Health. In this way, we truly are built “by clinicians.” 

We understand that the goal of a behavioral health professional throughout the referral process is finding the best clinical fit for each client. Behind that process is not only access to enough of the right clinicians and providers but a way to find them and keep track of them. Today, we are addressing network-building, which lies behind the TPN.Health referral process, and how you, an active TPN.Health member, can make the tool work to its greatest potential. 

How To Build Your Network in TPN.Health

1. Create a robust clinical profile. 

SEARCHABILITY. Filling out specific fields when creating your clinical profile is essential because it allows you to be filter-searched in TPN.Health. Filter-searchable fields include:

  • Referrals: Indicate whether or not you are “Accepting Referrals” with the button
  • Specializations (Scopes of Practice)
    • Age/Gender  
  • Focus Issues
  • Modalities and Interventions
  • Insurances Accepted
  • Languages

Other fields that are not filter-searchable but that contribute to your identity in the TPN.Health community include:

  • Biography
  • Photo
  • Education
  • Publication list
  • Link to your website if you have one
  • Video of:
    • You
    • The space in which you practice
    • Other facets your work

The goal is to create a clinical profile that accurately reflects and showcases your identity as a professional in the behavioral health field!

2.Connect.  

Now that you have created a robust clinical profile, you can begin to reach out to other members to make them a part of your network. When you click “Connect” on another member’s profile, they are notified and can accept your connection request. Once they accept, both parties have access to the direct messaging feature. Note that your connections are only visible to you.

3. Endorse.

You can endorse other community members with whom you have worked for a specific specialization or scope of practice. Be as detailed as possible when endorsing because sent and received endorsements are visible on your profile! Endorsements are visible markers of living relationships with other trusted professionals in the network. In this way, they are key to creating strong networks supporting the referral process in TPN.Health. 

Alongside the endorsement feature, we are excited to announce the first iteration of the endorsement pool, which is simply a collection of your outward-endorsements made visible on your TPN.Health profile. With the endorsement pool, other members can see inside your personal network of providers and the specific scopes of practice for which you are endorsing those providers. Stay tuned for a blog on the endorsement pool as a key feature of building a reliable referral network in TPN.Health. 

Do you have questions about how to effectively build a network that supports the referral process inside TPN.Health? Reach out to us here!

Haven’t started building with us yet? Take the first step here.

TPN.Health is Recalibrating the Referral Process

TPN.Health is recalibrating the referral process

We at Trusted Provider Network talk a lot about the referral process and rightly so. We talk about it because TPN.Health is the professional tool for clinicians to make and receive referrals for clients based upon the best clinical fit. It’s a big part of why we’re here. The goal is to put the process in clinicians’ (your) hands so that it is easily navigable. After all, behavioral health is a field where there is not enough time in the day for clinicians to be caught up in search issues. So, I asked a few clinicians, each of whom use a referral process appropriate to their own practices, to share their experiences with the referral process.

TPN.Health member Taylor Farris, LMSW, works at the Lafayette Parish Correctional Facility. Her work at the jail is largely crisis management, getting people stabilized and maintaining that stabilization. Beyond the crisis management, Taylor herself often lacks the time and resources to provide clients what they need. It is at this point that the need to refer out surfaces; she says, “It’s imperative to have a good list of people. Once I know they (clients) are being released, I need to find someone that can really start the intensive therapy process…to try to break that cycle of incarceration.” She needs to know for sure that the people to whom she is referring can help the population she serves.

Some of you have expressed that you are in institutional or organizational settings where your place of work already has a solid referral system, so you never need to make referrals yourself. Even though you’re not making referrals, other clinicians can still search for you. The idea is that you are searchable, able to display the parts of your scopes of practice that are most important to you and the modalities, theories, and therapies you want to practice.

Others of you in the behavioral health space may not be in the business of seeing clients. Perhaps you are in a setting oriented instead to academia. For instance, Dr. Patrick Bordnick, LCSW, Dean of the Tulane School of Social Work, and Chair of the Board of Advisors for TPN.Health, does not himself see clients, but people often call him for referrals. Likewise, he notes the fringe benefit of being able to search for and find vetted providers for loved ones. In his experience, the referral process in the behavioral health space is presently “cumbersome, unclear, and unscalable,” and TPN.Health serves to address this issue.

At the recent TPN.Health sponsored “Teaching DBT Skills” training, I had an opportunity to speak with Mark Saucier, LPC. He works in the counseling department at a local behavioral hospital and owns a small private practice, for which the giving and receiving of referrals is necessary. Mark really spoke to the underpinnings of referrals when he expressed, “[I am] always needing them and always happy to give [them] because I don’t know everything, and I don’t know anyone who does, so maybe all of us together can figure it out.”

Underneath the referral process is the need for different human beings to practice, in honesty, what is uniquely theirs to practice. In a similar way, there is a need for a community of clinicians as diverse as the people it serves. TPN.Health Ambassador and member Parker Sternbergh, LCSW, touched on the subject of diversity when she noted how important it is for her to “bring herself” into practice. This means integration of creativity and nuances from her own lived experience into the role of clinician.

It is true that no one provider is clinically equipped to address all manner of things and people that happen to float, barge, slump, or dance into their office, but there is even more to it than that. Principally, a therapeutic encounter is a human encounter. This means it is quite possible that non-negotiable barriers come up when determining clinical fit. These barriers can take the form of differences in gender, communication style, energy level, perceived power, age, or any number of nuanced perceptions that influence how people exist in an encounter with another person.

So, part of the clinical fit is the human fit. Will clinician and client be able to relate to one another? Are there barriers that we can help remove to locate a better match between clinician and client? These are questions to consider when making a referral, and TPN.Health is giving you the tool to navigate to solutions, through access to a trusted, diverse community.

Click here to begin making and receiving referrals in TPN.Health!