Barriers to Care Coordination and Medical Home Implementation

BACKGROUND: Pediatricians are central in leading the family-centered medical home (FCMH), yet little is known about how provider-perceived barriers to and attitudes toward the FCMH affect implementation. This study aims to assess the relationship between pediatrician-perceived barriers to and attitudes toward FCMH and reported care coordination.

METHODS: Pediatricians working in ambulatory care responded to the American Academy of Pediatrics Periodic Survey of Fellows #79 (N = 572, response rate, 59%). Our primary care coordination outcomes were whether pediatricians were: (1) leading a multidisciplinary team; (2) developing care plans; and (3) connecting with support services. Independent variables included barriers to FCMH implementation (lack of communication skills, support services, and time). Associations between outcomes and barriers were assessed by multivariate logistic regression, controlling for pediatrician and practice characteristics.

RESULTS: Lack of sufficient personnel was significantly associated with fewer care coordination activities: leading a multidisciplinary team (odds ratio [OR], 0.53), developing care plans (OR, 0.51), and connecting with support services (OR, 0.42). Lacking communication skills was significantly associated with lower odds of development of care plans (OR, 0.56) and assistance with support services (OR, 0.64). Lack of time was significantly associated with lower odds of leading a multidisciplinary team (OR, 0.53). A pediatrician’s belief that the FCMH encourages the use of preventive services was significantly associated with increased support services (OR, 2.06).

CONCLUSIONS: Pediatricians report a need for sufficient personnel and communication skills to provide care coordination, a core component of the FCMH. Interventions to boost FCMH implementation should focus on providing resources to develop these characteristics.

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