This fact sheet provides ideas and expectations for your child’s medical providers who practice as a “Medical Home” for your child and family. A “Medical Home” is a family-centered approach to health care that includes making families equal partners in their child’s care.
Your child’s primary care doctor and their office is accessible.
- Available after hours, on weekends and on holidays
- Accepts your child’s health insurance
- Office and equipment physically accessible to your child
Staff within your child’s primary care office know you and help you.
- Know you and your child when you call
- Recognize and accommodate your child’s special needs
- Respond to requests for prior approvals, letters of medical necessity for your child’s insurance, or documentation for programs and services
- Provide written materials in a language you understand
Your child’s primary care doctor respects you and listens to your observations about your child.
- Asks you to share your knowledge about your child
- Seeks your opinion when decisions are needed
- Talks to you about how your child’s condition affects your family (other children in the
- family, child care, expenses, work, sleep)
- Acknowledges and respects your family’s cultural values and religious beliefs
- Provides interpreter services if needed
Your child’s primary care doctor and office staff work with you to plan your child’s care.
- Help you set short-term (3-6 months) and long-term (the next year) goals for your child
- Give you important information, such as recommendations or new treatments, in writing
- Work with you to create and update a written plan of care for your child’s medical and non-medical needs
- Review your child’s medical records with you when needed
- Help you consider new and emerging treatment choices for your child’s condition
Your child’s primary care doctor and office staff support you as a caregiver.
- Help you connect with family support organizations and other parents in your communit
- Provide information on community resources
- Find and share new information, research or materials that are helpful in caring for your chil
- Help you to advocate on behalf of your child
- Plan for adult health care services (if appropriate for your child’s age)
Your child’s primary care doctor and office staff help you coordinate your child’s care.
- Follow up with difficult referrals
- Help you find needed services such as transportation, durable medical equipment, home care, and ways to pay for them
- Explain your child’s health needs to other health professionals
- Reach out to your child’s school or day care providers to help them understand your child’s medical condition
- Encourage and support frequent communication between all persons involved in your child’s care (with your consent)
- Organize and attend team meetings about your child’s plan of care that include you and other providers
Parent/Family Member, How Can I Partner with my Child’s Doctor?
Share your views during appointments. You know your child better than anyone else.
Help make decisions related to your child’s care. When parents and doctors share decision-making, care for the child is often better.
Be willing to try those activities or medications that you and your child’s doctor decide are in his or her best interest. Keep track of what happens, and share this at your next appointment.