Life is full of changes, and at some point during your kid’s childhood, you may find yourself looking for a new pediatrician. It might be that you are moving to a new place or that your current pediatrician is retiring. Whatever the reason, you will want to ensure that you find the best fit for you and your kid.
It is worth starting the search as soon as possible so you have time to do thorough research on the options available in the area. To get you started, we have put together a few tips for choosing your next pediatrician.
Where you start depends on the reason for your search. For example, if your current doctor is retiring, they might have a recommendation within their practice or surrounding area. This has many benefits because the transition will be a lot smoother when it comes to sharing your child’s medical history. Also, if you have been living in the area for some time, you will be able to get recommendations from your friends and family.
However, if you are moving to an entirely new city, you will have to conduct a more extensive search. You can start by checking for available clinics through the American Academy of Pediatrics’ healthychidren.org website, which shows you a detailed list of highly qualified pediatricians in your area.
What To Look For
Regardless of the reason for your search, it is essential to do some research before signing up with a new doctor. Take a look at their websites to check out the available doctors’ credentials and find out if they are board certified. Additionally, you will be able to take a look at their profiles and the services they offer.
Once you have done your initial search, there are a few other things that are worth considering.
What Is Important for You and Your Child?
Choosing the right pediatrician is a critical decision, so you shouldn’t just go for the first one you meet. It is far better to take your time to get a feel for what the doctor/clinic is about, and the best way to do that is my first making an initial inquiry and then going to visit the clinic.
When you initially contact the clinic, the first thing you should ask is whether they are accepting patients at the moment. If the answer is yes, have a list of questions that are important to you, such as opening hours, emergency care provision, their range of services, insurance coverage, and what their value systems are. If you get a good vibe, then arrange to visit the clinic in person.
If you are lucky and you visit a group practice, you can skip this first step and arrange to talk to the doctor that has been recommended to you by your existing pediatrician.
Meet the Pediatrician
When you go to the clinic, take the time to have a good look around. Do you feel comfortable with the location and distance from your home? Does the clinic look inviting from the outside? Is it welcoming when you go inside? What is the staff like? If you have reservations at this stage, then this clinic is unlikely to be for you, no matter how good the pediatrician is meant to be.
When you meet the pediatrician for the first time, see how they interact with both you and your child. Do you both feel at ease? How does the doctor speak to you when you ask them a question? If you are happy, make sure you ask for any clarification regarding insurance, services, and availability.