An updated AAP policy statement re-emphasizes the importance of the pediatric medical home and strongly discourages patients and families from using retail-based clinics.

While retail-based clinics have become a convenient option for busy families, they do not provide the same level and continuity of care as doctors’ offices, said James J. Laughlin, M.D., FAAP, lead author of the statement, AAP Principles Concerning Retail-Based Clinics, (

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). Pediatricians may need to expand office hours and work more collaboratively with colleagues to reduce the appeal of these clinics.

“If we aren’t accessible, then somebody else will take up that business,” Dr. Laughlin said. “It’s an opportunity for us. … We need to make ourselves more available to see patients in a way that’s convenient for them.”

For many parents, Dr. Laughlin said, quality means receiving medical attention for their children when they want it....

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