Objective: To examine the frequency with which pediatricians provide care coordination services to children, particularly those with special health care needs, in their practices and the barriers to providing these services.
Methods: An 8-page questionnaire was mailed to 1632 randomly selected US members of the American Academy of Pediatrics.
Results: The response rate was 56.7%. Most pediatricians (71.2%) reported that they or someone in their practice serves as the primary care coordinator for their children with special needs, but fewer than one fourth (23.3%) always contact the school about the child's health and educational needs as part of care coordination, only 18.7% always schedule time with the child's family to discuss the findings of a specialist, and only 23.2% meet with the discharge planning team to facilitate transition from hospital to home. The respondents identified the 2 top barriers that impede this activity: limited time and lack of medical staff in their offices.
Conclusions: Although most pediatricians believe that they are providing care coordination services, when asked about specific care coordination activities, such as contacting the school or scheduling time with the family to discuss the findings of a specialist, many do not provide these services.