Caring for Children with Medical Complexity: Definitions, Challenges and Solutions
Jeremy N. Friedman.
Increasing prevalence of children with complex and chronic diseases has occurred in the last half century and
will likely continue to occur. These children, their parental caregivers, their families and the health care system are
challenged in providing seamless coordinated care that optimizes outcomes in an effective and efficient manner. This
paper outlines some potential solutions including clarifying definitions of the population and evaluations of existing and
evolving models of care such as the chronic care model, the primary care medical home and non-primary care practice
based models, such as comprehensive clinics focused on a specific disease or population, comprehensive clinics focused
on a non-categorical population (not focused on a single/limited set of disease(s)), interventions focused on home care;
and, other models focusing on more limited types of interventions or policy change. Ongoing growth in impact of
complex chronic disease of childhood demands increased attention across sectors of care as an immediate area of focus for
child health policy.
Keywords: complex care, children with medical complexity, children with special health care needs, chronic care models, Medical Home
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