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J Health Care Poor Underserved. 2009 Aug;20(3):748-55. doi: 10.1353/hpu.0.0184.

Development of a computerized medical history profile for children in out-of-home placement using Medicaid data.

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  • 1The Ohio State University, OH, USA.


Children in out-of-home placements (foster children) often undergo multiple placement changes while under the care of child protective services. This instability can result in lack of health care continuity and poor health outcomes. This brief describes the development of a medical history profile, or passport, developed from Medicaid administrative data. A purposive sample of 25 youths was provided from a county child protective services agency. The patients were systematically matched with data from the state Medicaid agency. Using Medicaid claims/encounter data we generated health care profiles that provided information on historical use of ambulatory care, diagnoses, providers seen, medications used, and inpatient admissions. However, profiles were limited by missing provider information and non-specific diagnostic coding. Despite these limitations, Medicaid data-based profiles show the potential to be a cost efficient method for improving continuity of care for children in out-of-home placement.

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