An enhanced medical home is defined as a doctor or clinic that has long-term responsibility over an indiviudal care including treating acute and chronic illnesses, maintaining Electronic Health Records, coordinating specialty care, and providing emergency coverage 24/7. Every child deserves this "medical home."
The enhanced medical home model takes the medical home standard a step further. In the enhanced medical home, pediatric primary care providers have an expanded scope of practice to include evidence-based protocols for chronic disease management (e.g., for asthma), and on-site access to services that are necessary and often difficult to access, like nutrition guidance, oral health and mental health services, and assistance receiving care from other pediatric specialists when needed.
Children's Health Fund strongly advocates for a medical home for all children, and especially for those who are medically underserved. Medically underserved children have many of the same needs of children with special health care needs, the target population for the medical home standard of care. Both have a higher than typical rate of chronic conditions; higher than typical rates of mental health and developmental problems; and often require a range of specialty care from other providers and systems. For example, the asthma rate among New York City homeless children is 31%, more than triple the typical rate for children. Developmental and psychiatric problems far exceed typical rates as does the rate of referral for specialty care -- one patient in four. Care provided in the enhanced medical home model is essential for these children.