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September 2017

Is Pediatric Long-term Care the Next Frontier in Infection Prevention and Control?

Author Affiliations
  • 1Division of Hospital Medicine, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, Ohio
  • 2Department of Pediatrics, University of Cincinnati College of Medicine, Cincinnati, Ohio
  • 3Division of Infectious Diseases, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, Ohio
  • 4Section Editor, JAMA Pediatrics
JAMA Pediatr. 2017;171(9):835-836. doi:10.1001/jamapediatrics.2017.1752

The prevalence of children with medical complexity has increased over the past several decades as a result of advances in medical care and improved survival of children with chronic, congenital, and critical illness.1,2 Most children with medical complexity receive care at home from families with or without the assistance of home health care and nursing; however, a small but growing proportion of sick children are served by skilled nursing facilities or pediatric long-term care facilities (pLTCFs).3,4 These children require assistance with activities of daily living and have complex medical care needs, including use of medical devices and technology (eg, enteral feeding tubes, tracheostomies, and ventilators). Pediatric LTCFs also provide developmentally appropriate therapies and socialization with other residents, staff, volunteers, and visitors.