If your child is followed by multiple specialists and has complex medical needs like technology dependence or chronic disease with social, developmental or behavioral concerns, you may find it difficult to keep up with and coordinate all of their care. That's why Tufts Children's Hospital has launched the Pediatric Complex Care Program (PCCP) to support you and your family throughout your health care journey.
We spoke to Dr. Laura Arvidson-Guzman, Associate Medical Director of the PCCP and general pediatrician here at Tufts Children's Hospital, to learn more about the services and care her team provides.
For more information, visit the PCCP web page here or call the PCCP at 617-636-9501.
Q: Why is the PCCP an important part of a child’s care?
A: The PCCP serves children here at Tufts Children's Hospital and partners with families, primary care providers, and sub specialists to provide comprehensive and coordinated care for children with complex medical conditions. We recognize that most of this care is provided in the outpatient setting. It also may involve many individuals and organizations outside of Tufts Children's Hospital, including home nursing, Early Intervention, school-based services, advocacy groups, and other family supports.
As the Associate Medical Director of the program, I am fortunate to work with our highly qualified team, coordinating with other complex care team members, primary care providers both at Tufts Children's and out in the community, and sub specialty physicians to develop and provide care that is comprehensive and personalized to each child and family.
Q: Why did you become involved in the PCCP?
A: I became involved in the PCCP at Tufts Children's Hospital after seeing the struggles that families faced in balancing care for their child with other responsibilities. The difficulty primary care providers face in coordinating care for children with complex medical issues motivated me to provide more family-centered care and to make this process easier for both families and providers.
Q: What makes care for children with medical complexity special at Tufts Children's Hospital?
A: Tufts Children's Hospital is a special and very unique place for children to receive their medical care. Our small size lends itself to provide more tailored care for our patients, better communication and collaboration between our teams and ancillary staff that contribute to children’s care. All of our staff members (including physicians, nurses, social workers, pharmacists, nutritionists, physical and occupational therapists) are incredibly dedicated to helping our patients and families to learn about their child’s conditions, resources available in the community, and how to best advocate for their child’s needs.
Q: How can the PCCP work with my primary care provider?
A: As a primary care physician myself, I recognize the challenges and the time requirement involved in coordinating medical care for children with medical complexity. The complex care program aims to be a resource for primary care providers to help better coordinate care for children with medical complexity. For patients followed at Tufts Children's Hospital or by outside primary care providers, our goal is to make care coordination easier and to supplement the great care that is already provided by a child’s primary care provider.
For families enrolled in our program, we provide a consistent point of access to Tufts Children's Hospital and help streamline communication between primary care and specialty providers. In addition, if a patient already has established care with a multidisciplinary team in their medical home, we can work with this team to help supplement the services they are already receiving.