Congenital heart disease is the most common birth anomaly. Patients with congenital heart disease have complex health care needs that often must be addressed by the primary care provider in the medical home. To help primary care providers provide the best care possible for these patients, the American Academy of Pediatrics has issued a policy statement, "The Care of Children with Congenital Heart Disease in Their Primary Medical Home," appearing in the November 2017 issue of Pediatrics (published online Oct. 30). The policy offers primary care providers a "timeline" approach that emphasizes the role of the primary care provider and medical home in the management of patients with congenital heart disease in their various life stages. Some of the recommendations include promoting care coordination and communication between the family, primary care provider and subspecialists - especially during transition from hospital to home or from pediatric to adult care. Also recommended is facilitating patient access to pediatric subspecialty care and medications, encouraging caregivers to undergo CPR training for patients at increased risk of sudden death and promoting a lifestyle of good nutrition and physical activity in children and adolescents with congenital heart disease.
The American Academy of Pediatrics is an organization of 66,000 primary care pediatricians, pediatric medical subspecialists and pediatric surgical specialists dedicated to the health, safety and well-being of infants, children, adolescents and young adults. For more information, visit www.aap.org and follow us on Twitter @AmerAcadPeds