The Importance of Medical Homes in Paediatric Care

Research has highlighted the importance of primary care in improving health outcomes of children and adults. There is growing evidence of the importance of a “Medical Home”, especially for populations with high healthcare needs.

The Medical Home includes care which is accessible, continuous, comprehensive, compassionate, coordinated, family-centered and culturally effective. This model was first described by the American Academy of Pediatrics and there is growing evidence of its importance for children.

Findings from a U.S. study revealed that children and youth with chronic conditions who have a Medical Home are nearly 50% less likely to experience delays in receiving necessary care and support services compared to those without a Medical Home1. Findings from a systematic review suggest that for children and youth with chronic health needs, having a Medical Home is associated with favourable health outcomes2. These outcomes include effectiveness, efficiency, family-centeredness, timeliness, and equity.

1Strickland B, McPherson M, Weissman G, et al. Access to the medical home: results of the National Survey of Children with Special Health Care Needs. Pediatrics 2004 May;113(5 Suppl):1485-92.

2Homer CJ, Klatka K, Romm D, et al. A review of the evidence for the medical home for children with special health care needs. Pediatrics 2008 Oct;122(4):e922-e937.