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November 1996

Early and Periodic Screening Diagnosis and Treatment

Author Affiliations

Boston University School of Medicine and Neighborhood Health Plan Boston, MA 02118

Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 1996;150(11):1219-1220. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1996.02170360109021

Early and Periodic Screening Diagnosis and Treatment (EPSDT) represents a clinical practice guideline and a regulatory policy. As part of Medicaid, under EPSDT, states must provide screening, vision, hearing, and dental services at intervals that meet recognized standards of clinical practice.1 With more states enrolling children in managed care Medicaid programs2 and a growing interest in measuring the quality of care, EPSDT may become the basis for judging managed care programs.3

Little is known about what physicians think of EPSDT. As part of a quality improvement program at the Neighborhood Health Plan (NHP)(a 41 000-member network model HMO located in Massachusetts), we surveyed 350 physicians who care for children. The NHP was founded in 1988 by the Massachusetts League of Community Health Centers and Greater Boston Forum for Health Action. Approximately 75% of NHP members are Medicaid clients.

One hundred twenty-seven clinicians responded to the questionnaire; 90%