When it comes to choosing the best pediatrician for your child, there are a few things you need to consider, as this is a healthcare relationship that you and your child will have for many years of their childhood.
Let’s talk about what to look for in a pediatrician and where you can find the best pediatrician.
What to look for in a pediatrician?
The first thing is location. You will want to find a pediatrician close to you, as this is more convenient if you have a tight work schedule and can’t spend a lot of time driving far away to appointments. Also, if and when your child becomes sick, medical care is just minutes away.
Second, you should think about hours of operation. Will the pediatrician be available when you need them? Kids can get sick at any time, so it is important to find a pediatrician that is open on the weekends or at least has a medical provider on-call after hours or on weekends.
Third, think about the insurance coverage. Will the pediatrician accept your insurance? Children need lots of medical care in the first few years, and medical tests and visits can add up. Finding a pediatrician that accepts your insurance will ease your financial burden.
Fourth, make sure the pediatrician is experienced in treating common childhood illnesses and conditions. Look for a board-certified pediatrician or a Fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics (FAAP).
Fifth, get a referral from your friends and relatives. OB-GYNs work closely with pediatricians to take care of the newborn babies they deliver, so ask your OB-GYN if they can recommend any. Additionally, you can talk to your friends and family and see if they have any recommendations or doctors they trust.
Questions to Ask a Pediatrician During an Introductory Visit
Once you have done your research online and with friends/your OB-GYN and settled on a few pediatricians you think you may like, schedule an initial visit to see if they live up to their recommendations. It is common for parents to ask questions in the first appointment, and here are some ideas of what you may want to ask:
- What is your experience with treating common childhood illnesses and conditions?
- What is your experience with treating children that have (specific condition your child has, ex., autism, diabetes, cystic fibrosis, etc.)?
- What is your policy on prescribing antibiotics?
- Are there any other services you provide, such as immunizations or developmental screenings?
- What insurance do you accept?
- How long does a checkup usually take?
- What are your office procedures for handling sick children?
- Do you have any weekend or evening appointments available?
- What is your policy on cancelling or rescheduling appointments?
- How do you handle after-hours emergencies?
- Why did you choose pediatrics?
How to Know If a Pediatrician Is Right for You and Your Family
After the appointment, think about whether or not they are the right fit for your family. Some things you will want to consider are their bedside manner, the professionalism of the office staff, their availability, and how comfortable you feel with them. If you have any doubts, it is best to keep looking until you find a pediatrician that you are satisfied with.
Best Pediatrician Near Me
If you are still looking for an experienced, professional, and friendly pediatrician for your child, look no further than Northwoods Pediatric Center. Founded over 20 years ago by Dr. Shahzad Islam Shah, MD, FAAP, our practice has four other board-certified pediatricians on the team who are experienced in treating almost any pediatric condition.
To schedule an appointment with us, call us today at 281-296-7770, or visit our website and request an appointment here. We look forward to helping you learn about your child’s developmental and health needs!