Minnesota Medical Home
Information for Families and Consumers
A Medical Home is where primary doctors and families work together to improve health outcomes and quality of life for children and youth with special health care needs and their families
A great Medical Home:
- Knows its patients
- Partners with and learns from youth and families
- Uses a team approach for the care of chronic conditions, which includes planned, proactive visits
- Coordinates services
- Co-manages with families and specialists
- Assists with transitions
- Provides connections with community organizations
- Is satisfying for families, providers and clinic staff
What can parents do to create a Medical Home for their child?
- Choose a primary doctor who will: provide well care; sick care; help you coordinate your child's chronic care needs, and see you as a partner in decisions about your child's care. Ask to interview potential new primary doctors.
- Be an active partner in your child's care: Write down questions, concerns and observations about your child to share with the doctor.
- Think about your family's goals for your child and talk about them with the doctor so your goals can help guide the care.
- Ask the doctor to help develop a care plan for your child. A care plan is a great tool that can help you and all your child's doctors, nurses, school staff and others understand your child's needs and communicate better.
- Tell your child's doctor about the MN Medical Home Project. Ask them to get more information from Minnesota Children and Youth with Special Health Needs section at the Minnesota Department of Health
What Defines Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs?
Children and youth with special health care needs, (CYSHCN) have or are at risk for chronic physical, developmental, behavioral, or emotional conditions and require health and related services of a type or amount beyond that required by children generally.
Health Care Experiences of CYSHCN
Children and youth with special health care needs account for 80% of all pediatric health care expenditures.
Pediatric primary care is designed for children who do NOT have special health care needs.
Primary care is designed to provide well child, preventive care services and acute illness management and oriented to support a single service: the provider - patient encounter.
“The one thing that has helped us is having a care plan in place, that way when he sees a new specialist; it saves us the hassle of telling “Bjorn's story” all over again. We can just hand the care plan to them and it lists all the procedures that Bjorn has had and all the medications that Bjorn is on.”
Julie- Bjorn's mom
A Medical Home is Family - Centered. The foundation of family-centered care is the relationship between families and professionals in which:
- Families and professionals work together in the best interest of the child and family. As the child grows, s/he assumes a partnership role.
- Everyone respects the skills and expertise brought to the relationship.
- Trust is acknowledged as fundamental.
- Communication and information sharing are open and objective.
- Participants make decisions together.
- There is willingness to negotiate.
The Medical Home: A Family - Professional Partnership
“We have a care plan that is always with us, and the hospital and the clinic are aware of the special needs...and openly give Miriam that much needed “extra” time and gentleness. All these little changes are making a significant difference not only for Miriam, but for our family.”
Jennifer, Miriam's Mom
This web-site contains a number of resources to help you create a Personal Health Record / Care Notebook for your child who has disabilities, special health care needs or both and will be useful to adult consumers with disabilities and chronic health conditions.
This web-site includes: Articles about Care Plans, downloadable templates and forms, web-based care notebooks, software-based personal health records, reference information, and links to other web sites and more.