The Patient-Centered Medical Home & You: Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) for Patients and Families
What is a Patient-Centered Medical Home?
Caring about your child is the most important job of the Patient Centered Medical Home. In this personal model of health care, the primary care practice leads a team that collectively takes responsibility for your child’s care. They make sure your child gets the preventive and illness care he or she needs.
Your primary care provider and an extended team of health professionals build a relationship in which they know you, your child, your family situation, and your child’s medical history and health issues. In turn, you come to trust and rely on them for expert, evidence-based health care answers that are suited entirely to your child.
How will a Medical Home lead to better care?
There are many benefits to being in a Medical Home:
- Comprehensive care: your medical home helps address any health issue at any given stage of your child’s life
- Coordination of care: services that are needed are connected and ordered in a rational way, including the use of resources in your community
- Continuous care: accurate, effective, and timely communication from your health care team.
- Accessible care: eliminating barriers to care. You initiate the interaction for any health issue with our practice through a phone call, an electronic message, or an office visit—whatever your preference is. We can also help you obtain care after hours and on weekends.
- Proactive care: not only are we available when your child is sick, but you and the doctor will build a care plan to address your child’s health care goals to keep your child well.
- Evidence-based care: we keep up to date with the latest medical research and clinical practice guidelines and will work with you to personalize your care to fit your preferences and your child’s goals.
What does the Medical Home Team do for my child?
The Medical Home team is your child’s team. They provide your child with the care he or she needs, when it’s needed. We customize that care to meet your child’s needs and your expectations. We help you set appropriate health goals for you child and work with you to help your child meet them. We will spend enough time with you to answer any questions you have, so you understand what you need to do to help your child successfully meet their goals. We help you understand all options for care, so you can decide what care is best for your child. And we will always treat you with the respect you deserve: as a full partner in your child’s healthcare.
What type of services does my Medical Home provide?
We provide comprehensive, compassionate, and continuous care for all of our patients
- Same-day appointments
- Preventive care and physicals (health risk assessments, sports, and school physicals)
- Chronic disease management (asthma, ADHD, and more)
- Acute care for illness and injuries
- Well child visits, screenings, and vaccinations
- 24/7 phone access to your care team
- Online electronic access to your medical records
- Referrals to specialists and mental health providers
- Management of multi-specialty care plans, including mental health
Will my Medical Home help my child stay healthy?
The care you receive in a Medical Home goes beyond the office visit with the primary care provider.
- We want to help you set goals for your child’s care and overall health, and help you meet those goals one step at a time
- We want to encourage you to fully participate in recommended preventive screenings and services
- We will recommend tools and education materials you can use to manage your child’s health
- We will give you information about classes, support groups, or other types of services to help you learn more about your child’s chronic condition(s) and staying healthy
- We will provide you with information about resources in your community to help you manage your child’s health and overall well-being
- We will provide you with materials and, if needed, appropriate referrals to behavioral health specialists to help your child make and sustain healthy changes
How can the Medical Home help if my child needs to see a specialist or go to a hospital?
Your medical home team will coordinate your child’s care with other health care providers. If you need a recommendation for a quality specialist, we can help you find one. We will work with those specialists and the hospital to continuously plan and manage your child’s care.
With your consent, the medical home team will inform specialists and hospitals about your child’s medical conditions and your preferences for care. In addition, we will follow up to obtain information after a specialty visit or hospital stay. We will also follow up with you to make sure your child is getting the care he or she needs, and that you understand the plan of care.
Can my Medical Home help me when I have an emergency?
If you have a medical emergency, please dial 9-1-1.
For other clinical problems or medical advice, call your Medical Home first. We may be able to save you an expensive and inconvenient trip to the emergency room! Depending on the nature of the problem, it might be best addressed by your child’s primary care doctor. We offer same-day appointments and are available 24/7 for advice by phone.
If you do go to the emergency room, please make sure you let the staff know who your primary care provider is, and ask that they contact us as soon as possible, so we can help them take better care of your child.
What can I do to help my Medical Home team take better care of my child?
- Understand that you are a full partner in your child’s health care
- Learn about your child’s condition, and what you can do to keep him or her as healthy as possible
- As best you can, follow the care plan that you and your medical team have agreed is important for your child’s health
Do your best to communicate with your Medical Home team
- Tell us all about your child’s health and medical history, and the health history of your family
- Bring a list of questions to each appointment. Also, bring a list of your child’s medicines, including any vitamins or herbal remedies.
- If you don’t understand something the doctor or other member of your medical home team says, ask them to explain it in a different way.
- If you get care from other health professionals, always tell your medical home team so they can help coordinate for the best care possible.
- Talk openly with your care team about your experience in getting care from the medical home so they can keep making your care better.
How do I access the Medical Home?
We offer convenient same-day and next-day appointments, after-hours phone access, and extended hours.
Monday 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday 8:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Wednesday 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday 8:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Friday 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
To make an appointment, call (727) 849-2535 or visit our website: www.drpanickerpediatrics.com
For clinical advice and all other matters, please call (727)849-2535. We respond in a timely manner to your phone calls.
For all urgent matters, you may contact us by phone at any time. For all non-urgent matters, general information, or to make an appointment, please call us during normal business hours.
How do I transfer records to the Medical Home?
We will need your consent to obtain your child’s medical records from any previous primary care providers or from specialists your child has seen in the past. Consent forms are available from the front desk and on our website. You can also call during business hours if you need extra copies sent to you.
Can my child be in a Medical Home if we don’t have health insurance?
We accept many insurance plans and in some cases cash patients. Call us to discuss your particular situation. Once your child becomes a patient in our practice, we provide the same access and care regardless of your health insurance status.
Depending on your financial situation, you may be eligible for government subsidies to buy private health insurance, or your child may be eligible to enroll in Medicaid.
For more information and useful tools to check your eligibility, visit Healthcare.gov or ask one of your care team members for assistance. Additionally, please visit the Florida Department of Children and Families ACCESS website for information about assistance programs http://www.myflorida.com/accessflorida/