Saturday, September 29, 2012

Choosing your first pediatrician

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For two months after Loureese was born, we met a few paediatricians during our visit at the children's hospital which happens to be connected to the hospital where Joyie gave birth. They were friendly, accommodating, and can explain what they want despite of some language challenges, meaning technical terms and stuff. However, we cannot get hold of the same doctor who first checked our baby every time we pay a visit. We want the same doctor if possible of course. Apart from that the hospital is pretty far from where we live.

Anyway, Iv'e found helpful tips online that can greatly benefit those who are going to choose their baby's first paediatrician. 

Make a list 

Have a running list of questions you want to ask your doctor and know what is most important to you. Don't feel bad bringing it with you to appointments and asking a lot of questions -- this is a very important decision! Following are a few of the questions I made sure to ask every doctor we talked to. Obviously you can add to this as you see fit, but it's a good starting point! 

Are they close to home? 

Is getting to the doctor's office convenient ? It is worth it (in my opinion) to choose a doctor that is convenient for you and close by your home. Trust me, when Baby arrives you're not going to have the time for a long-distance doctor's office commute.

Is the doctor taking new patients? 

This is a more important question than you'd think. It's not worth it to beg the "best" doctor to take you on if they're at capacity -- you want someone who has time to really get to know your family and a doctor at capacity won't be able to do that. Plus, have you ever been rushed at the doctor's office? It stinks! 

What are their hours? 

Do they have weekend or after (business) hour care? "On call" phone nurses? This was incredibly important to me! During my son's first year of life I called our "on call" nurses all the time. It gave me a lot of peace knowing that I could talk to them whenever I needed to.

What insurance plans do they accept? 

And by that I mean, do they accept yours? This is an important question to ask before you commit. Make sure the doctor's office can work with your insurance plan and that they can provide a pharmacy that also accepts your plan.

Does the doctor respect your approach to parenting? 

You want a doctor that will make you feel comfortable and provide the best medical advice without pushing you into decisions. Whatever your parenting plans concerning breastfeeding, vaccinations, circumcision, etc., make sure your doctor is understanding. 

So there you are. Have fun looking for your paediatrician.