Health care providers often focus on serving either children or adults. While this focus may mean more tailored approaches to care for the individual patient, it may be a missed opportunity to address the role of family on health outcomes.
Taking a multi-generational approach involves changing the focus of how the patient is viewed within the system. Health care providers may be serving a child, but must work with the family to address any issues. Often, caregivers or parents see their child’s pediatrician more than they see their own primary care provider. Therefore, they may feel more comfortable bringing up their own health concerns or accessing community supports in this setting.
Caring for the whole family requires a system of care coordination that can support an array of services, involving a variety of health care professionals. Integrated primary care and behavioral health settings help facilitate this approach to care and leverage the community resources needed to support the whole family.