The Patient-Centered Medical Home & You
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) for Patients and Families
What is a Patient-Centered Medical Home?
A Medical Home is all about you and your child. Caring about your child is the most important job of your Patient Centered Medical Home. In this personal model of health care, your child’s physician leads a team of health care professionals that collectively take responsibility for your child’s care. They make sure your child gets the care he or she needs in wellness and illness to heal body, mind and spirit.
Your child’s physician and an extended team of health professionals build a relationship in which they know you, your child, your family situation, your medical history and health issues. In turn, you come to trust and rely on them for expert, evidence-based health care answers that are suited entirely to your child and to your family.
How will a Medical Home lead to better care for my child?
There are many benefits to being in a Medical Home:
- Comprehensive care means your medical home helps you address any health issue
Coordination of care occurs when any combination of services you and your provider decide your child needs are connected and ordered in a rational way, including the use of resources in your community.
- Continuous care occurs over time and you can expect continuity in accurate, effective and timely communication from any member of your child’s health care team.
- Accessible care allows you to initiate the interaction your child needs for any health issue with a physician or other team member through your desired method (office visit, phone call, or electronically) and you can expect elimination of barriers to the access of care and instructions on obtaining care during and after hours.
- Proactive care ensures you and your child’s provider will build a care plan to address your family’s health care goals to keep your child well, plus be available for you when your child gets sick.
- Evidence based care means that your child’s care team keeps up to date with the latest medical research and clinical practice guidelines, and will work with you to personalize your child’s care to fit your family’s preferences and goals.
Who is my child’s Medical Home Team?
Your child’s team may include a doctor, registered nurse, lab technician, medical assistant or health educator, as well as other health professionals. These professionals work together to help your child get healthy, stay healthy and get the care and services that are right for your child. When needed, your child’s doctor arranges for appropriate care with qualified specialists.
What does a Medical Home Team do for my child?
The Medical Home team is your child’s team. They provide your child with the care he or she needs, when he or she needs it and customize your child’s care to meet your needs and expectations. We help you set appropriate health goals for your child and work with your family to meet them. We will spend enough time with you and your child to ensure your family understands what you need to do to successfully meet your goals and answer any questions you might have. We help you understand all your options for care so you can decide what care is best for your child. And we will always treat you and your child with the respect you deserve as a full partner in your child’s healthcare.
What type of services does a Medical Home provide for my child?
- We provide comprehensive, compassionate and continuous care for children from birth to 18.
- Same day appointments
- Preventive care and physicals (health risk assessments, sports and school physicals)
- Chronic disease management (such as ADHD, Eczema, Obesity, Diabetes, Asthma and more)
- Acute care for illness and injuries
- Well child visits, screening and vaccinations
- Yearly physical forms provided at annual appointments (additional copies completed within 3-4 business days of the request)
- 24×7 phone access to your care team
- Online electronic access to your medical records
- Referrals to vetted specialists and mental health providers
- Management of multi-specialty care plans including mental health
- Prescription refills within 2 business days (48 hours)
Will a Medical Home help me take care of my child?
The care you receive in a Medical Home goes beyond the office visit with your personal clinician.
- We want to make sure you develop a clear idea of how to care for your child.
- We want to help you set goals for your child’s care and help you meet your goals one step at a time
- We want to encourage you to fully participate in recommended preventive screenings and services
- We will recommend tools and education materials you can use to improve your child’s condition and manage your child’s health
- We will recommend a schedule for follow-up appointments to manage chronic conditions, for example ADHD, depression, anxiety, contraception (prescription refills will not be dispensed if the appropriate schedule is not followed as these visits help to ensure your child is staying healthy and tolerating his or her medication)
- We will give you information about classes, support groups, or other types of services to help you learn more about your child’s condition and keep your child healthy
- We will provide you with information about resources in your community to help you manage your child’s health and your child’s wellbeing
- We will provide you with resources and, if needed, appropriate referrals to behavioral health specialists to help you make and sustain healthy changes to lifestyle or to address mental health conditions for your child and other family members
How can a Medical Home help if my child needs to see specialists or go to a hospital?
Your medical home team will coordinate your child’s care with all other health care providers. They will recommend quality specialists for your child and your family and will work with your child’s specialist and the hospital to continuously plan and manage your child’s care.
With your consent, your medical home team will inform specialists and hospitals about your child’s medical conditions, your family’s preferences and your goals and will follow up to obtain information after your child’s specialty visit or hospital stay. We will also follow up with your family to make sure your child gets the care he or she needs and that you understand your child’s plan of care.
Can a Medical Home help me when I have an emergency?
If you have a medical emergency, please dial 9-1-1.
For other clinical problems or medical advice, call Pediatric Associates first. Depending on the nature of the problem, we may be able to save you an expensive and inconvenient trip to the emergency room for problems best addressed by your child’s personal primary care provider. You can reach us via telephone 24×7, and same day appointments are always available.
If you do go to the emergency room, please make sure you let the staff know who your primary care provider is and ask that they contact Pediatric Associates as soon as possible so we can help them take better care of your child and your family.
What can I do to help my child’s Medical Home team take better care of my child?
- You are encouraged to actively participate in your child’s care.
- Understand that you are a full partner in your child’s health care
- Learn about your child’s condition and what you can do to keep your child as healthy as possible
- As best you can, follow the care plan that you and your medical team have agreed is important for your child’s health
- Do your best to communicate with your child’s Medical Home team
- Tell us all about your child’s health, your child’s medical history and the health history of your family
- Bring a list of questions to each appointment. Also, bring a list of any medicines, vitamins, or remedies your child is using..
- If you don’t understand something your child’s doctor or other member of your child’s medical home team says, ask them to explain it in a different way
- If your child gets care from other health professionals, always tell your child’s medical home team so they can help coordinate for the best care possible
Talk openly with your child’s care team about your experience in getting care from the medical home so they can keep making your child’s care better.
How do I access my child’s Medical Home?
We offer convenient same-day and next-day appointments, after-hours phone access and extended hours—Saturdays and Sundays
Monday 8:30 AM – 4:30 PM
Tuesday 8:30 AM – 4:30 PM
Wednesday 8:30 AM – 4:30 PM
Thursday 8:30 AM – 4:30 PM
Friday 8:30 AM – 4:30 PM
Saturday/Sunday We ask that you call between 8:30 AM -10:00 AM and we
will call you back within the morning to discuss your child’s needs and offer an appointment if needed.
Weekend hours vary, depending on demand.
For all urgent matters, please contact us by phone at 401-438-6888.
To make an appointment or for non-urgent clinical advice, general information and all other matters, please call during normal business hours or log into the 24/7 Patient Portal at: https://health.healow.com/pediassociates We will respond in a timely manner to phone calls or electronic messages sent through the Patient Portal.
How do I transfer my child’s records to my child’s Medical Home?
We will need your consent to obtain your child’s medical records from previous primary care providers or specialists seen in the past. Consent forms are available in our new patient package and online on our website at www.pediassociatesinc.com
You can also call our front desk during business hours if you need extra copies sent to you, or ask our new patient coordinator, Felicia, for assistance on the phone or when you visit with us.
Can my child be in a Medical Home if I don’t have health insurance?
We accept many insurance plans and in some cases cash patients. Call us to discuss your particular situation. Once your child becomes a patient in our practice, we provide your child with the same access and care regardless of your health insurance status.
Beginning January 1st, 2014 most people will be required by law to have health insurance. Depending on your financial situation, you may be eligible for government subsidies to buy private health insurance, or you may be eligible to enroll in Medicaid.
For more information and useful tools to check your eligibility visit Healthcare.gov or ask one of your care team members for assistance.