Table 2.

Foster Care–Specific Health Visits

Age of ChildTiming or FrequencyRationale for Visit
Admission health screenIdeally within 72 h of placementObtain growth parameters; document signs of abuse/neglect; diagnose and treat acute/chronic medical and mental health problems; ensure child has necessary medications and equipment; support and educate caregivers and youth through transition period
Comprehensive health assessmentWithin 30 d of entry to foster careReview all available health information. Monitor growth, adjustment to placement, and for signs of maltreatment; comprehensive physical examination; conduct recommended screening; mental health and developmental assessment and referral; caregiver and youth health education and foster care–specific anticipatory guidance
Follow-up health visit60–90 d after entry to foster careReview health, mental health, and developmental assessments. Review any new health information; monitor growth and development and care in foster home; monitor for signs of abuse and neglect; ensure all needs being met; ongoing anticipatory guidance and education
Infants to 6 moMonthly (between preventive health-care visits)Monitoring of growth and development, especially if premature, substance-exposed in utero, or having complex health issues; support and education of caregivers
21 moExtra visit at age 21 moMonitor development and behavior closely; support and education for caregivers
2 to 21 ySemiannual (between annual preventive health-care visits)Monitor growth and development; assess adjustment to placement; monitor for emerging behavioral, emotional, and developmental problems and make appropriate referrals; support and education of caregivers and youth