Impact of Healthcare Location Concordance on Receipt of Preventive Care Among Children Whose Parents have a Substance Use and/or Mental Health Diagnosis

J Prim Care Community Health. 2024 Jan-Dec:15:21501319241229925. doi: 10.1177/21501319241229925.


Aims: Children of parents with substance use and/or other mental health (SU/MH) diagnoses are at increased risk for health problems. It is unknown whether these children benefit from receiving primary care at the same clinic as their parents. Thus, among children of parents with >1 SU/MH diagnosis, we examined the association of parent-child clinic concordance with rates of well-child checks (WCCs) and childhood vaccinations.

Design: Retrospective cohort study using electronic health record (EHR) data from the OCHIN network of community health organizations (CHOs), 2010-2018. Setting: 280 CHOs across 17 states.

Participants/cases: 41,413 parents with >1 SU/MH diagnosis, linked to 65,417 children aged 0 to 17 years, each with >1 visit to an OCHIN clinic during the study period.

Measurements: Dependent variables: rates of WCCs during (1) the first 15 months of life, and (2) ages 3 to 17 years; vaccine completeness (3) by the age of 2, and (4) before the age of 18. Estimates were attained using generalized estimating equations Poisson or logistic regression.

Findings: Among children utilizing the same clinic as their parent versus children using a different clinic (reference group), we observed greater WCC rates in the first 15 months of life [adjusted rate ratio (aRR) = 1.06; 95% confidence interval (CI) = 1.02-1.10]; no difference in WCC rates in ages 3 to 17; higher odds for vaccine completion before age 2 [adjusted odds ratio (aOR) = 1.12; 95% CI = 1.03-1.21]; and lower odds for vaccine completion before age 18 (aOR = 0.88; 95% CI = 0.81-0.95).

Conclusion: Among children whose parents have at least one SU/MH diagnosis, parent-child clinic concordance was associated with greater rates of WCCs and higher odds of completed vaccinations for children in the youngest age groups, but not the older children. This suggests the need for greater emphasis on family-oriented healthcare for young children of parents with SU/MH diagnoses; this may be less important for older children.

Keywords: childhood vaccinations; family healthcare; family medicine; prevention; primary care; well child care.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Delivery of Health Care
  • Humans
  • Mental Health
  • Parents
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Substance-Related Disorders*
  • Vaccines*


  • Vaccines