Family physicians and other members of the primary health care (PHC) team may be ideally positioned to provide transition care to adolescents and young adults (AYAs; aged 12-25 years) exiting pediatric specialty services. Potential solutions to well-known challenges associated with integrating PHC and specialty care need to be explored.
To identify strategies to transition care by PHC professionals for AYAs with chronic conditions transitioning from pediatric to adult-oriented care.
Participants were recruited from six Primary Care Networks in Calgary, Alberta. A total of 18 semi-structured individual interviews were completed, and transcribed verbatim. Data were analyzed using a qualitative description approach, involving thematic analysis.
Participants offered a range of strategies for supporting AYAs with chronic conditions. Our analysis resulted in three overarching themes: (i) educating AYAs, families, and providers about the critical role of primary care; (ii) adapting existing primary care supports for AYAs and (iii) designing new tools or primary care practices for transition care.
Ongoing and continuous primary care is important for AYAs involved with specialty pediatric services. Participants highlighted a need to educate AYAs, families and providers about the critical role of PHC. Solutions to improve collaboration between PHC and pediatric specialist providers would benefit from additional perspectives from providers, AYAs and families. These findings will inform the development of a primary care-based intervention to improve transitional care.
© The Author(s) 2020. Published by Oxford University Press.