Introduction to Medical Home

In this Toolkit, Wisconsin physicians and families share their stories and insights on creating a Medical Home Partnership. They will guide you through the key steps of quality improvement – the small steps that can make big differences for Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs.

Five Regional Centers for Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs
Wisconsin has five Regional Centers dedicated to supporting families with children with special health care needs - and the providers who serve them. Regional Center staff facilitate the work of Medical Home teams around the state. Contact your Center about resources for families or support in strengthening your Medical Home.

What is a Medical Home?
A "great" medical home declares itself to be a medical home, and

  • knows its patients and patient populations;
  • partners with and learns from youth and families;
  • uses a proactive team approach to chronic care management, including planned visits, coordination of complex services, co-management with specialists, and assistance with transitions - especially to adult services;
  • connects with other community-based organizations;
  • offers safe, efficient care while preventing unnecessary or duplicative services, thus reducing health care costs.1

    Medical Home Talking Points, Center for Medical Home Improvement

Who are Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs?
They are children who have or are at risk for a chronic physical, developmental, behavioral, or emotional condition. While Medical Home is important for all children, it is particularly vital for children and youth with special health care needs – who represent about 50% of pediatric health care costs, have twice as many contacts with physicians, 2.5 times greater the number of school absences and twice as many unmet health needs.

Medical Home Strategies
The toolbar at the right includes the seven key quality improvement strategies recommended by the National Initiative for Children's Healthcare Quality. In each strategy section there are videos and resources that will guide you through the key steps of Medical Home implementation.

Each section includes several brief videos, where Medical Home Team members share their perspectives. (You may need to download the free Flash Player to view these videos.)

Medical Home Resources
In the videos, Medical Home Team members refer to tools and resources they have developed or adapted. Each strategy section highlights these Wisconsin Resources as well as National Resources. While watching and listening to the videos, browse the resource links to review tools, guidebooks and the latest research on Medical Home. Contact your Regional Center about any of the resources in this toolkit or to request copies of the Wisconsin Medical Home Brochures for Providers and Families and to find support in strengthening your Medical Home.

The Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs Program at the Wisconsin Department of Health Services, in partnership with the Wisconsin Chapter – American Academy of Pediatrics, Wisconsin Academy of Family Physicians, and Family Voices of Wisconsin, has developed this Toolkit to help assure that children in this state have access to Medical Homes. We thank all the families and providers for their work in improving systems of care for children with special health care needs. We hope their stories will inspire others to strengthen their own Medical Homes.

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Site last updated:
July 25, 2014