Example: A child has an asthma attack on the playground at school. Fortunately, she has her inhaler at school. However, the school nurse does not have any additional information from the child’s primary care provider who is not available to speak with the nurse or the parent that day.
This same experience is common for children with other chronic conditions including attention deficit disorder, developmental delays, special nutritional needs, seizure disorders, etc.
Integrated Care occurs when all individuals who care for a child are working in a coordinated way to meet the needs of the child and family, resulting in less fragmentation and frustration for families.
The Pediatric Integrated Care Survey (PICS) was developed to measure care integration from the perspective of the family. Families can use the tool to tell their child’s care team members how well the care team is coordinating efforts across all services.
Every state has a federally funded Family-to-Family Health Information Center (F2F). These are family-staffed organizations that assist families of children and youth with special health care needs and the professionals who serve them. They provide support, information, and training around health issues.
The National Center for Family Professional Partnerships (NCFPP) promotes the partnership of families of children with special health care needs in all levels of their child’s care including the systems and policy level. NCFPP supports the national network of Family-to-Family Information Centers.