Choosing a pediatrician can be a bit time consuming. These five tips for choosing a pediatrician will help ensure you find just the right doctor for your child.
What Is A Pediatrician?
Pediatricians are physicians who specialize in the health of children from birth through age 21. They are certified by the American Board of Pediatrics to care for babies, children and young adults.
Board-certified pediatricians have graduated college, completed four years of medical school, and have at least three years of "on-the-job" training (residency) in pediatrics. To remain board certified, pediatricians must maintain ongoing education in pediatrics, demonstrate quality patient care, and hold a valid medical license.
5 Tips for Choosing a Pediatrician for Your Child
1. Start gathering names
There are several ways to obtain the name of a well qualified pediatrician. For instance, Doylestown Health offers "Find a Provider" search tool that lists all the local pediatricians who are on the Doylestown Health Medical Staff.
Parents you can trust – such as friends and family--are another good source of information about local pediatricians.
2. Check credentials
Once you have some names singled out, call each practice and find out about the doctor's education and training. Is she or he board certified? How long has the doctor been practicing medicine?
3. Do some research
You may want to prepare a list of questions you'd like to have answered by the pediatrician and/or office staff. First make sure the practice is accepting new patients. Try to find out the doctor's current hospital appointments and where your child would be admitted if hospitalized. Ask about office hours and who handles phone calls during off hours. Also be sure the practice accepts your insurance.
4. Set up an interview with the pediatrician
Both parents should attend interviews if possible. This is a good chance to have your questions answered and see if a particular physician is a good fit for you in terms of personality and philosophy of care.
5. Consider communication
Good communication with your child's doctor is vital. Find out when and how the doctor is available (by phone or email). Learn who covers the practice when your pediatrician is unavailable. Consider the connection between the practice and the hospital and how they would coordinate care and information should your child be hospitalized.
Find a Pediatrician Near You
*Source: The American Academy of Pediatrics
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