Article| Volume 30, ISSUE 5, P435-443, September 2016

Off to the Right Start: Well-Child Visit Attendance Among Health Center Users

Published:December 06, 2015DOI:



      This study examines correlates of past-year well-child visit attendance, reasons for choosing to receive care at a health center, and patient experience among pediatric federally qualified health center users.


      This observational study used cross-sectional 2009 Health Center Patient Survey data. Descriptive statistics, bivariate analysis, and multivariable models were utilized.


      This study found that 83.0% of children who visited a health center in the past year had a well-child visit in the past year and 88.5% had a usual source of care, with no disparities based on race/ethnicity or insurance status. A usual source of care, especially a health center, enhanced well-child visit attendance. The top reasons for seeking care at a health center include convenience (31.6%), quality (24.5%), accessibility (17.7%), and co-located nonmedical services (11.5%).


      Well-child visit attendance is high but there is room for improvement, particularly among patients who lack a usual source of care.

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      Emily Jones, Social Science Analyst, Division of Behavioral Health and Intellectual Disabilities Policy, Office of Disability, Aging, and Long-Term Care Policy, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation, United States Department of Health and Human Services, Washington, DC, and Professorial Lecturer, Department of Health Policy and Management, George Washington University, Milken Institute School of Public Health and Health Services, Washington, DC.


      Julia Zur, Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of Health Policy and Management, George Washington University, Milken Institute School of Public Health and Health Services, Washington, DC.


      Linda Elam, Deputy Assistant Secretary, Office of Disability, Aging, and Long-Term Care Policy, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation, United States Department of Health and Human Services, Washington, DC.