The medical home for children with autism spectrum disorders: parent and pediatrician perspectives

J Autism Dev Disord. 2010 Mar;40(3):317-24. doi: 10.1007/s10803-009-0874-5. Epub 2009 Sep 19.


This qualitative study examines differences between perceptions of parents and pediatricians regarding the needs of children with autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) and their families within the medical home. Two separate focus groups of parents of children with ASDs and pediatricians were conducted. Parents and pediatricians identify unmet needs within medical homes of children with ASDs. Parents perceived that physicians did not act early upon their concerns about development, and that care is less comprehensive, coordinated and family-centered than desired. Pediatricians desire to improve services but cite lack of time, training and resources as barriers. Medical homes for children with ASDs would benefit from better pediatrician ASD education and medical systems that support extended visits, care coordination and interdisciplinary collaboration.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Child
  • Child Development Disorders, Pervasive / diagnosis*
  • Child Development Disorders, Pervasive / therapy*
  • Child, Preschool
  • Clinical Competence
  • Education, Medical, Continuing
  • Female
  • Health Resources
  • Health Services Accessibility
  • Health Services Needs and Demand / statistics & numerical data*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Parents*
  • Patient-Centered Care / statistics & numerical data*
  • Pediatrics
  • Personal Satisfaction
  • Physician's Role
  • Physicians*
  • Primary Health Care
  • Professional-Family Relations
  • Surveys and Questionnaires