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Publication date: 6 May 2019

Kinga Zdunek, Mitch Blair and Denise Alexander

The Models of Child Health Appraised (MOCHA) project recognises that child health policy is determined to a great extent by national culture; thus, exploring and…

Abstract

The Models of Child Health Appraised (MOCHA) project recognises that child health policy is determined to a great extent by national culture; thus, exploring and understanding the cultural influences on national policies are essential to fully appraise the models of primary care. Cultures are created by the population who adopt national rituals, beliefs and code systems and are unique to each country. To understand the effects of culture on public policy, and the resulting primary care services, we explored the socio-cultural background of four components of policy-making: content, actors, contexts and processes. Responses from the MOCHA Country Agents about recent key national concerns and debates about child health and policy were analysed to identify the key factors as determinants of policy. These included awareness, contextual change, freedom, history, lifestyle, religion, societal activation and tolerance. To understand the influence of these factors on policy, we identified important internal and external structural determinants, which we grouped into those identified within the structure of health care policy (internal), and those which are only indirectly correlated with the policy environment (external). An important child-focused cultural determinant of policy is the national attitude to child abuse. We focused on the role of primary care in preventing and identifying abuse of children and young people, and treating its consequences, which can last a lifetime.

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Issues and Opportunities in Primary Health Care for Children in Europe
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78973-354-9

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Publication date: 6 May 2019

Mitch Blair, Mariana Miranda Autran Sampaio, Michael Rigby and Denise Alexander

The Models of Child Health Appraised (MOCHA) project identified the different models of primary care that exist for children, examined the particular attributes that might…

Abstract

The Models of Child Health Appraised (MOCHA) project identified the different models of primary care that exist for children, examined the particular attributes that might be different from those directed at adults and considered how these models might be appraised. The project took the multiple and interrelated dimensions of primary care and simplified them into a conceptual framework for appraisal. A general description of the models in existence in all 30 countries of the EU and EEA countries, focusing on lead practitioner, financial and regulatory and service provision classifications, was created. We then used the WHO ‘building blocks’ for high-performing health systems as a starting point for identifying a good system for children. The building blocks encompass safe and good quality services from an educated and empowered workforce, providing good data systems, access to all necessary medical products, prevention and treatments, and a service that is adequately financed and well led. An extensive search of the literature failed to identify a suitable appraisal framework for MOCHA, because none of the frameworks focused on child primary care in its own right. This led the research team to devise an alternative conceptualisation, at the heart of which is the core theme of child centricity and ecology, and the need to focus on delivery to the child through the life course. The MOCHA model also focuses on the primary care team and the societal and environmental context of the primary care system.

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Issues and Opportunities in Primary Health Care for Children in Europe
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78973-354-9

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Publication date: 6 May 2019

Paul Kocken, Eline Vlasblom, Gaby de Lijster, Helen Wells, Nicole van Kesteren, Renate van Zoonen, Kinga Zdunek, Sijmen A. Reijneveld, Mitch Blair and Denise Alexander

There is considerable heterogeneity between primary care systems that have evolved in individual national cultural environments. Models of Child Health Appraised (MOCHA…

Abstract

There is considerable heterogeneity between primary care systems that have evolved in individual national cultural environments. Models of Child Health Appraised (MOCHA) studied how the transfer of models or their individual components can be achieved across nations, using examples of combinations of settings, functions, target groups and tracer conditions. There are many factors that determine the feasibility of successful transfer of these from one setting to another, which must be recognised and taken into account. These include the environment of the care system, national policy-making and contextual means of directing population behaviour – in the form of penalties and incentives, which cannot be assessed or expected to work by means of rational actions alone. MOCHA developed a list of criteria to assess transferability, summarised in a population characteristics, intervention content, environment and transfer (PIET-T) process. To explore the process and means of transferability, we obtained consensus statements from the researchers on optimum model scenarios and conducted a survey of stakeholders, professionals and users of children’s primary care services that involved three specific health topics: vaccination coverage in infants, monitoring of a chronic or complex condition and early recognition of mental health problems. The results give insight into features of transferability – such as the availability and the use of guidelines and formal procedures; the barriers and facilitators of implementation and similarities and differences between model practices and the existing model of child primary care in the country. We found that successful transfer of an optimal model is impossible without tailoring the model to a specific country setting. It is vital to be aware of the sensitivity of the population and environmental characteristics of a country before starting to change the system of primary care.

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Issues and Opportunities in Primary Health Care for Children in Europe
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78973-354-9

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Content available
Book part
Publication date: 6 May 2019

Mitch Blair, Michael Rigby and Denise Alexander

Models of Child Health Appraised (MOCHA) was a wide-ranging, multi-disciplinary and multi-method study that aimed to identify the best models of provision of primary care…

Abstract

Models of Child Health Appraised (MOCHA) was a wide-ranging, multi-disciplinary and multi-method study that aimed to identify the best models of provision of primary care for the children of the European Union. The research has identified two main conclusions: (1) The depth of interdependency of health, economy and society. Primary care needs to be an active partner in public debate about current child health concerns. It should orientate more effectively in addressing wider societal influences on child health through advocacy and collaborative intersectoral public health approaches with those agencies responsible for public and community health if it is to address effectively issues such as childhood obesity, mental health and vaccine hesitancy. As part of this, it needs to address its workforce composition and skills, not least in two-way communication. (2) The European Community has many visions and commitments to children and child health policies, but their effectiveness is largely unfulfilled. The Commission can strengthen its impact on children’s health and healthcare services within current remits and resources by focusing on a number of key fields: planned and structured research, providing insight into optimal human resources and skills in child primary care, developing and using ethical means of listening to children’s views, remedying the invisibility of children in data, measuring the quality of primary care from a child-centric perspective, understanding the economics of investing in children’s health, developing e-health standards and evaluation, collaborative and harmonised use of downloaded research databases, understanding and respecting children’s rights and equity, and appreciating and allowing for children’s evolving autonomy as they grow up. An optimal model of primary care for children is proactive, inclusive, corporately linked, based on and providing robust evidence, and respects the wider determinants of health and children’s involvement in their health trajectory.

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Issues and Opportunities in Primary Health Care for Children in Europe
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78973-354-9

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Book part
Publication date: 6 May 2019

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Issues and Opportunities in Primary Health Care for Children in Europe
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78973-354-9

Content available
Book part
Publication date: 6 May 2019

Mitch Blair, Michael Rigby, Arjun Menon, Michael Mahgerefteh, Grit Kühne and Shalmali Deshpande

Whilst nations have overall responsibility for policies to protect and serve their populations, in many countries, health policy and policies for children are delegated to…

Abstract

Whilst nations have overall responsibility for policies to protect and serve their populations, in many countries, health policy and policies for children are delegated to regions or other local administrations, which make it a challenging subject to explore at a national level. We sought to establish which countries had specific strategies for child and adolescent health care, and whether primary care, social care and the school–healthcare interface was described and planned for, within any policies that exist. In addition, we established the extent to which a child health strategy and meaningful reference to children’s records and care delivery exist in an e-health context. Of concern in the Models of Child Health Appraised (MOCHA) context is that 40% of European Union and European Economic Area countries had reported no health strategy for children, and more than a half had no reference to supporting delivery of children’s health in their e-health strategy.

We investigated the differences in ownership and leadership of children’s policy, which was a range of ministry input (health, education, labour, welfare or ministries of youth and family); as well as cross-ministerial involvement. In terms of national policy planning and provider planning, we investigated the level of discussion, consultation and interaction between national healthcare bodies (including insurance bodies), providers and the public in policy implementation. The MOCHA project scrutinised the way countries aim to harness the latest technologies by means of e-health strategies, to support health services for children, and found that some had no explicit plans whereas a few were implementing significant innovation. Given that children are a key sector of the population, who by very nature have a need to rely on government and formally governed services for their well-being in the years when they cannot themselves seek or advocate for services, our findings are particularly worrying.

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Issues and Opportunities in Primary Health Care for Children in Europe
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78973-354-9

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Publication date: 6 May 2019

Denise Alexander, Uttara Kurup, Arjun Menon, Michael Mahgerefteh, Austin Warters, Michael Rigby and Mitch Blair

There is more to primary care than solely medical and nursing services. Models of Child Health Appraised (MOCHA) explored the role of the professions of pharmacy, dental…

Abstract

There is more to primary care than solely medical and nursing services. Models of Child Health Appraised (MOCHA) explored the role of the professions of pharmacy, dental health and social care as examples of affiliate contributors to primary care in providing health advice and treatment to children and young people. Pharmacies are much used, but their value as a resource for children seems to be insufficiently recognised in most European Union (EU) and European Economic Area (EEA) countries. Advice from a pharmacist is invaluable, particularly because many medicines for children are only available off-label, or not available in the correct dose, access to a pharmacist for simple queries around certain health issues is often easier and quicker than access to a primary care physician or nursing service. Preventive dentistry is available throughout the EU and EEA, but there are few targeted incentives to ensure all children receive the service, and accessibility to dental treatment is variable, particularly for disabled children or those with specific health needs. Social care services are an essential part of health care for many extremely vulnerable children, for example those with complex care needs. Mapping social care services and the interaction with health services is challenging due to their fragmented provision and the variability of access across the EU and EEA. A lack of coherent structure of the health and social care interface requires parents or other family members to navigate complex systems with little assistance. The needs of pharmacy, dentistry and social care are varied and interwoven with needs from each other and from the healthcare system. Yet, because this inter-connectivity is not sufficiently recognised in the EU and EEA countries, there is a need for improvement of coordination and with the need for these services to focus more fully on children and young people.

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Issues and Opportunities in Primary Health Care for Children in Europe
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78973-354-9

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Book part
Publication date: 6 May 2019

Mitch Blair, Heather Gage, Ekelechi MacPepple, Pierre-André Michaud, Carol Hilliard, Anne Clancy, Eleanor Hollywood, Maria Brenner, Amina Al-Yassin and Catharina Nitsche

Given that the workforce constitutes a principal resource of primary care, appraisal of models of care requires thorough investigation of the health workforce in all…

Abstract

Given that the workforce constitutes a principal resource of primary care, appraisal of models of care requires thorough investigation of the health workforce in all Models of Child Health Appraised (MOCHA) countries. This chapter explores this in terms of workforce composition, remuneration, qualifications and training in relation to the needs of children and young people. We have focused on two principal disciplines of primary care; medicine and nursing, with a specific focus on training and skills to care for children in primary care, particularly those with complex care needs, adolescents and vulnerable groups. We found significant disparities in workforce provision and remuneration, in training curricula and in resultant skills of physicians and nurses in European Union and European Economic Area Countries. A lack of overarching standards and recognition of some of the specific needs of children reflected in training of physicians and nurses may lead to suboptimal care for children. There are, of course, many other professions that also contribute to primary care services for children, some of which are discussed in Chapter 15, but we have not had resources to study these to the same detail.

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Issues and Opportunities in Primary Health Care for Children in Europe
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78973-354-9

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Publication date: 6 May 2019

Mitch Blair, Denise Alexander and Michael Rigby

Primary care (PC) is a strong determinant of overall health care. Children make up around a fifth of the population of the European Union and European Economic Area and…

Abstract

Primary care (PC) is a strong determinant of overall health care. Children make up around a fifth of the population of the European Union and European Economic Area and have their own needs and uptake of PC. However, there is little research into how well PC services address their needs. There are large differences in childhood mortality and morbidity patterns in the EU and EEA countries, and there has been a major epidemiological shift in the past half century from predominantly communicable disease, to non-communicable diseases presenting and increasingly managed in PC. This increase in multifactorial morbidities, such as obesity and learning disability, has led to the need for PC systems to adapt to accommodate these changes. Europe presents a challenging picture of unexplained variation in health care delivery and style and of children’s different health experiences and health-related behaviour. The Models of Child Health Appraised (MOCHA) project aimed to describe the PC systems in detail, analyse their components and appraise them from a number of different viewpoints, including professional, public, political and economic lenses. It did this through nine work packages supported by a core management team, and a network of national agents, individuals in each MOCHA country who had the expertise in research and knowledge of their national health care system to answer a wide range of questions posed by the MOCHA scientific teams.

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Issues and Opportunities in Primary Health Care for Children in Europe
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78973-354-9

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Content available
Book part
Publication date: 6 May 2019

Michael Rigby, Grit Kühne and Shalmali Deshpande

Information and communication technologies can transform how services can be and are delivered as has already happened in other arenas, such as civil aviation, financial…

Abstract

Information and communication technologies can transform how services can be and are delivered as has already happened in other arenas, such as civil aviation, financial services and retailing. Most modern health care is heavily dependent on e-health, including record keeping, targeted information sharing and digital diagnostic and imaging techniques. However, there remains little scientific knowledge base for optimal system content and function in primary health care, particularly for children. Models of Child Health Appraised (MOCHA) aimed to establish the current e-health situation in children’s primary care services. Electronic health records (EHRs) are in regular use in much of northern and western Europe and in some newer European Union Member States, but other countries lag behind. MOCHA investigated the use of unique identifiers, the use of case-based public health EHRs and the capability of record linkage, linkage of information with school health data and monitoring of social media influences, such as health websites and health apps. A widespread lack of standards underlined a lack of research enquiry into this issue in terms of children’s health data and health knowledge. Health websites and apps are a growing area of healthcare delivery, but there is a worrying lack of safeguards in place. The challenge for policy-makers and practitioners is to be aware and to lead on the innovative harnessing of new technologies, while protecting child users against new harms.

Details

Issues and Opportunities in Primary Health Care for Children in Europe
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78973-354-9

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