for people ages up to 21 years (full criteria)
Healthy Volunteers
healthy people welcome
at Sacramento, California
study started
Principal Investigator
by James Marcin, MD, MPH
Headshot of James Marcin
James Marcin



Using a randomized trial design, the goal of this project is to prospectively compare outcomes from a telemedicine-based model of care to two cohorts: patients who receive in-person pediatric physiatrist medical direction (the "gold standard"), and those who receive medical oversight from non-specialist community providers. This project will determine the impact of this new model of care using telemedicine on parent/guardian satisfaction, adherence rates to an evidence-based hip surveillance program, and economic efficiency.

Official Title

School-Based Tele-Physiatry Assistance for Rehabilitative and Therapeutic Services for Children With Special Health Care Needs Living in Rural and Underserved Communities


During this study, a novel model of care will be developed and tested using telehealth technologies to bring necessary medical expertise to children with special health care needs living in rural and underserved communities. This model of care will be implemented in eight school-based Medical Therapy Units (MTUs) in northern California using a randomized design. The investigators hypothesize that this model of care will result in 1) equal satisfaction of the care received in-person from pediatric physiatrists and increased satisfaction of the care received from non-pediatric specialists; 2) equal adherence rates to an evidence-based hip surveillance program when compared to children who receive care from in-person pediatric physiatry care and better adherence than children who receive care from non-pediatric specialists; and 3) cost savings when compared to medical direction provided in-person by pediatric physiatrists and non-pediatric specialist providers.

The first 6 months of the project will be a "ramp-up" period during which the protocol will be re-reviewed during MTU site visits and necessary contracts and approvals will be in place. The last 6 months will be reserved for data analysis, study closeout, and manuscript preparation. The intervention phase will include various designs of implementation. For those schools currently without pediatric physiatry services, the investigators will provide MTU services using telemedicine and add in-person clinics. For those schools where medical direction is provided by non-pediatric physiatrists, the investigators will augment current services using telemedicine to provide medical direction to some children using pediatric physiatrists. For those schools where pediatric physiatrists travel long distances to provide medical direction during scheduled clinics, the investigators will similarly add additional telemedicine services such that an augmented mixed model of in-person and telemedicine pediatric physiatrist medical direction will be provided.


Pediatrics, Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine, Physical Therapy Modalities, Telemedicine, In-Person Pediatric Physiatrist, In-Person Non-Pediatric Physiatrist


You can join if…

Open to people ages up to 21 years

  • Participants will include children with special health care needs enrolled in the CCS Medical Therapy Program receiving care at one of the participating sites during the study period.

You CAN'T join if...

  • Children with special health care needs not enrolled in the CCS Medical Therapy Program.


  • University of California, Davis, Medical Center
    Sacramento California 95817 United States

Lead Scientist at UC Davis

  • James Marcin, MD, MPH
    Professor, Pediatrics, School of Medicine. Authored (or co-authored) 180 research publications


accepting new patients
Start Date
Completion Date
University of California, Davis
Learn more or sign up for the study here! Sign up for this study
Study Type
About 350 people participating
Last Updated