Note: This resource is part of Ambulatory HIE Toolkit.
A high-level overview of the various services, settings, mechanisms and conditions included in the concept of the continuum of care.
Continuum of Care is a concept involving a system that guides and tracks patients over time through a comprehensive array of health services spanning all levels and intensity of care.
The Continuum of Care covers the delivery of healthcare over a period of time, and may refer to care provided from birth to end of life. Healthcare services are provided for all levels and stages of care.
Continuum of Care includes both services and integrating mechanisms.
The services can be broken down into seven basic categories:
The four basic integrating mechanisms are:
The Continuum of Care can include a wide set of services, and does not usually refer to a formal system of care delivery. The following are examples of the types and settings of healthcare services that are regularly connected through the Continuum of Care.
In addition to these healthcare settings, the Continuum of Care may also extend to include:
The Continuum of Care will vary for each patient depending on their unique needs. Common characteristics and conditions include: