Become Be Merge Certified! 

Training and Internship Program for Mental Health Professionals: The Be Merge initiative is now training mental health professionals for a career in a primary healthcare clinics or private practices. To register for this training,  click HERE.

Be Merge: Online Training for Integrating Primary and Behavioral Health Care

The Be Merge Primary and Behavioral Health Initiative employs evidence-based practices that represent cutting edge innovation in the field of health care delivery. Through a partnership with USF Health, the Mental Health Association of Palm Beach County provides online, self-paced training for primary care providers including physicians, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, and other primary care staff interested in becoming more proficient at integrating behavioral health screening, billing, and recognition into your practices.  When you are Be Merge Certified, your practice will:

  • Provide higher quality care resulting in improved patient outcomes,
  • Save time and money,
  • Reduce risk, and much more. 

What is the Be Merge Training?

Be Merge is a self-paced online training program for primary care providers to assist with the integration of mental health and substance abuse recognition, diagnosis, management, and referral into the primary care practice.  We invite physicians, nurses, nurse practitioners, physician assistants and all who work in primary care to take this important training. The training is comprised of:

  • Six online self-paced training modules, which are about 20-30 minutes in length.
  • Ongoing technical and clinical support provided by the Be Merge Team.
  • Up to date, evidence-based desktop reference materials.
  • Virtual access to referrals to behavioral health specialists.
  • Opportunity to earn continuing education credits.
  • Training completion results in Be Merge certification.
  • Fee for training is only $99. 

Not only will your patients benefit from your added knowledge, but you will also discover financial and time advantages and increased risk management awareness. In addition, you will have access to our Be Merge Provider Referral Database (for referrals to specialists) and other technical assistance from the Mental Health Association of Palm Beach County. This is a self-administered training that you can take on your own timetable.  There are 6 modules, each taking approximately 20 minutes to take with a short test at the end of each. Training completion results in Be Merge Certification.

Learning Objectives

  • Recognize, assess and treat behavioral health disorders 
  • Determine when to refer patients to behavioral health specialists
  • Recognize diagnosis and treatment errors
  • Identify mental health resources in the community
  • Employ therapeutic, healing relationships in a primary care setting
  • Utilize interviewing and listening skills that lead to compassionate, empathetic health care

Note: Learning objectives apply to all professions in the target audience.  

Module 1: Introduction and Rationale. What is Be Merge? Training program for primary care providers to assist with recognition, diagnosis, management, and referral of patients with mental health concerns.

Module 2: Common Mental Health Disorders in Primary Care Practice. Common mental health disorders seen in primary care.  Diagnostic criteria and characteristics. Special considerations for different populations.

Module 3: Interviewing for Behavioral Health Issues. Why good communication skills are especially important with patients with mental health concerns. Methods of linear and non-linear listening and responding to patient concerns.

Module 4: Evidence-Based Screening Tools. The use and purpose of brief screening instruments for behavioral health. How to interpret screening results. How to integrate results into treatment plans.

Module 5: Medication Treatment Protocols. Things to consider in deciding what and when to prescribe. Protocols for the use of medications for behavioral health conditions.

Module 6: Billing Opportunities and Integration of Practice. Billing for behavioral health. Office procedures to maximize the efficiency of health and behavioral health integration.

Integrating Mental Health into Primary CareTo register for the training, call us at 561-832-3755.

For more information, please contact the Mental Health Association of Palm Beach County at 561-832-3755 or

Be Merge is jointly provided by:

USF HealthMHA of PBC



Online Training Information

Target Audience: This activity has been designed to meet the educational needs of physicians, psychologists, nurses, nurse practitioners, social workers, mental health counselors/therapists, addiction professionals, and other professionals who treat patients with behavioral health issues.


Physicians: This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the accreditation requirements and policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) through a joint providership of USF Health and Mental Health Association of Palm Beach County.  USF Health is accredited by the ACCME to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

USF Health designates this enduring material for a maximum of 1.75 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditsTM.  Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.  

Nurses: USF Health is an approved provider of continuing education for nurses through FBN 50-2970. This program has been approved for 1.5 contact hours.

AAPA accepts certificates of participation for educational activities certified for AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™ from ACCME accredited providers.  Physician Assistants who participate will receive a certificate of completion commensurate with the extent of their participation.   

AANPCP accepts certificates of participation for educational activities certified for AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™ from ACCME accredited providers.  Nurse Practitioners who participate will receive a certificate of completion commensurate with the extent of their participation.   

Florida Licensed Clinical Social Workers, Marriage & Family Therapists, and Mental Health Counselors: Florida Licensed Clinical Social Workers, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapists, Licensed Mental Health Counselors USF Health is an approved provider of continuing education credits for clinical social work, marriage and family therapy, and mental health counseling.  This program has been reviewed and approved for up to 2.00, 50-minute contact hours.  

Florida Nursing Home Administrators: USF Health is an approved provider of continuing education credits for Nursing Home Administrators licensees by the Florida Board of Nursing Home Administrators.  This program has been reviewed and approved for up to 1.5 contact hours.  Licensee numbers are required prior to the issuance of certificates.

Others: Certificates of completion will be provided for all other attendees.

Cancellation Policy: Cancellations must be received in writing and will be subject to a $35 processing fee.

USF Health reserves the right to cancel this program due to unforeseen circumstances, in which case a full refund of the registration fee will be given to participants. USF Health will not be responsible for other expenses incurred by the participant in the unlikely event that the program is cancelled.

Equal Opportunity

USF is an Equal Opportunity / Affirmative Action / Equal Access Institution. 

Medium or Media Used:

·         Computer Requirements:  Internet Access

·         E-mail Address

·         Java Version 1.5 or higher

Instructions for Credit

  1. Register for the activity and create a USF Health Learn login      
  2. Review the required accreditation information:  Target audience, learning objectives and disclosure information.
  3. Complete the entire self-study activity.
  4. Complete the pre and post test assessments
  5. Successfully pass the post test with a minimum score of 80%
  6. Submit the evaluation/claim form via internet and select the appropriate certificate link.


Pamela Gionfriddo, MPP

Dr. Paul Peluso

Dr. Ron Wiewora


USF Health adheres to ACCME Standards regarding commercial support of continuing medical education. It is the policy of USF Health that the faculty and planning committee disclose real or apparent conflicts of interest relating to the topics of this educational activity, that relevant conflict(s) of interest are resolved and also that speakers will disclose any unlabeled/unapproved use of drug(s) or device(s) during their presentation. Detailed disclosure will be made prior to starting the activity.

The information provided at this CME/CE activity is for continuing education purposes only and is not meant to substitute for the independent medical/clinical judgment of a healthcare provider relative to diagnostic and treatment options of a specific patient’s medical condition.

If you have activity or credit questions or concerns, please contact, or call 813-224-7860.  


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All Rights Reserved