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Primary Health Care Services for Children and Youth in Canada: Access, Quality and Structure

This Module describes the state of primary care among children and youth in Canada, including the structure of primary care delivery, changes under reform, and funding for other primary health care services such as eye and dental care across provinces and territories. It capitalizes on existing data and measures to report on the quality of primary care for children in Canada.


Suggested Citation and Contributors

Suggested Citation and Contributors

This short section presents information about how to reference this module and a list of the module contributors.

Section 1: Introduction

Section 1: Introduction

This section defines primary care. It also describes how this module was developed as well as information on the Environmental Scan conducted to determine potential indicators for reporting on the quality of primary health care of Canadian children and youth.

Section 2: Structure of Primary Care

Section 2: Structure of Primary Care

In Canada, primary paediatric care is provided by a variety of health care practitioners. This section describes who provides this care by province and territory. It also explores primary care reform and how this relates to care for children and youth.

Section 3: Access and Effectiveness of Primary Care

Section 3: Access and Effectiveness of Primary Care

This section highlights what is known from national surveys about access to primary care for children and youth. It also reports on indicators called ambulatory care sensitive admissions which are thought to reflect access to timely and high quality primary care. Finally, this section summarizes publicly available data on childhood immunization coverage, an important part of primary care effectiveness.

Section 4: Primary Dental Care

Section 4: Primary Dental Care

Just as primary care is considered a child’s “Medical Home”, the delivery of oral health care (the “Dental Home”) is important for child health. There are differences in the provision of, and access to, dental care services for children and youth across Canada. This section presents data on the structure, financing and access to dental care among Canadian children and youth.

Section 5: Other Primary Health Care Services

Section 5: Other Primary Health Care Services

This section provides a summary of other important primary healthcare services which are associated with child and youth health outcomes. These include vision and hearing screening, developmental surveillance/screening and drug coverage. This section highlights the underlying evidence for these services and describes whether there is universal access to these across provinces and territories. There are no pan-Canadian data on the actual use or uptake of thee services.

Section 6: Summary/Conclusions

Section 6: Summary/Conclusions

This section provides a summary of the findings of the Module.



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