Skip to main content

“Strengthening collaboration between families and physicians greatly enhances the care of all patients, especially children with special health care needs. This center is a catalyst for this collaboration and hence improved care of children.”

- Jeff Schiff, M.D. MBA, Medical Director, Minnesota Health Care Programs.   Emergency Physician, Children’s Hospitals and Clinics

Hot Topic

Free national parks pass for people with disabilities
Access Pass – From the National Park Service

For U.S. citizens or permanent residents with permanent disabilities. May be obtained in person at a federal recreation site or through the mail using this application form. The cost of obtaining an Access Pass through the mail is ten dollars ($10) for processing the application (the Pass is free). Applicants must provide documentation of permanent disability and residency or citizenship. For more information visit the National Park Service Frequently Asked Questions about the Interagency Access Pass

Text Message Updates

Get Health updates and reminders for important dates via Text Message!

More Information >>>

PACER Center’s Dental & Medical Advisory Board Members

View the Board Members

Conozca las preguntas (Know the questions), a new Spanish-language website of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), offers Spanish-speaking patients tips to improve their communication with their medical providers.

You can text: Preguntas to 80676 for their mobile information.

Translated Overview Information with Audio files


Nov yog qhov piav ua lus Hmoob me ntsis hais txog qhov chaw qhia cov xov hais txog kev noj qab haus huv rau tsev neeg. Koj muaj cuab kav nyem ntawm no thiab mloog cov lus.


Xaruntan Akhbaarada iyo amuuraha la xiriira Caafimaadka oo ay Qoysku wadaagaan, ee gobolka Minnesota, (Familily-to-Family Health Information Center). Waa barnaamij ka mid ah barnaamijyada Hey’adda PACER, oo ka caawinaya qoyska habka loola shaqeeya amuuraha la xiriira caafimaadka, ceymiska iyo dhaqaatiirta. Waana waxqabad lacag la’aan ah.Fadlan halkan riix si aad fahfaahin siyaado ah u dhageysato


El Centro de Información de Salud de Familia a Familia (Family-to-Family Health Information Center) es un Programa dentro de PACER Center que ayuda a las familias a navegar a través de sistemas de salud, seguros y trabajando con los doctores. Es un servicio gratuito para todas las familias. Por favor haga un click para obtener información en audio.


PACER’s Family-to-Family Health Information Center (F2F HIC) provides a central source for families of children and young adults with special health care needs and disabilities to obtain support, advocacy, and information about the health care system. Children and youth with special health care needs (CYSHCN) are those who have or are at risk for chronic physical, developmental, behavioral, or emotional conditions that require health and related services of a type or amount beyond that required by children generally. PACER promotes family-centered care and family and professional collaboration at all levels of health care. The F2F HIC also has a strong commitment to promote and support the needs of families from racially, culturally, and linguistically diverse communities.

The Center provides information to help families about:

  • Working effectively with doctors and other health care professionals and providers
  • Developing a family-centered care plan
  • Acquiring advocacy skills to use within the health care system
  • Developing health care summaries and plans for emergencies, home, and school
  • Health insurance—both public and private
  • Medical Assistance, TEFRA, parental fees, Waivers, Consumer Directed Community Supports (CDCS), and grants
  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI) through Social Security
  • Appeals process for insurance and government assistance programs

Project Services:

  • Individual help by telephone and face-to-face meetings
  • Family workshop training for health care advocacy, negotiation, strengthening relationships, and navigating managed care
  • Collaboration with community health care professionals to provide training and information about family-centered care
  • Collaboration with state and local agencies to provide family-centered systems of care for children and youth with special health care needs
  • Newsletter about health care issues, recent legislation, and health resources
  • Links with parent-to-parent support programs
  • Online resources

Why is family involvement in the health system important?

  • Teamwork and collaboration among families and professionals are essential to provide quality care for an individual child or a young adult for the health system in general to run more efficiently as a whole.
  • Parents, doctors, personal care attendants, and other professionals act as part of a team by contributing their own unique expertise and knowledge.
  • Team members work together as colleagues. Recommendations from each team member are equally valued.
  • While professionals can provide support and expertise, families have the ultimate responsibility of coordinating all the roles of a team, acting as caregivers, advocates, and decision makers. The expertise that families bring to systems of care is as vital as that of other team members.
  • Each family has its own values, and family members are best able to understand the needs of their child. Contributions from other team members help a family make informed decisions that are in the best interest of their child.

For more information about the Family-to-Family Health Information Center, please contact Linda Goldman Cherwitz or Wendy Ringer: (952)838-9000 Voice; (952)838-0190 TTY.

MyCare - an initiative to educate Americans about programs, benefits, and rights under the new Federal health care law.

This Family-to-Family Health Information Center project is funded in part through grant H84MC00005-09-00, administered by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Maternal and Child Health Bureau, Division of Services for Children with Special Health Needs. This grant program was established by the Family Opportunity Act of 2005, amended by the Patient Protection and Affordable Act of 2010.


Visit PACER's other sites: Teens Against Bullying | Kids Against Bullying | FAST Family Support | FAPE | MN SEACs

Translated content: Hmoob/Hmong | Español | Soomaaliga/Somali

    ©2016 PACER Center, Inc.