You want the best for your child in every aspect of their life, but how do you choose the best doctor for them? There are over 460 pediatricians in central Florida; but which is suited best for your family? Here are some helpful tips on choosing the perfect pediatrician for your child.
Family Practice, Private Clinic, or Hospital?
The first question you should ask yourself while looking for a pediatrician is, ‘What type of practice is best for my child?’ There are many different types of practices able to serve children, but not all can reach your specific needs.
One type of practice is a Family Practice where you and your child can both go, though convenient, not all family physicians specialize in pediatric care like a Private Pediatric Clinic. Pediatricians have an additional three years of residency focusing solely on child development and care.
A hospital also offers pediatric services plus the convenience of having emergency care on location. Hospitals are great for children with special needs and extreme emergency circumstances, but it’s not always convenient if your child needs a wellness check-up or non-emergent sick visit. Some hospitals could have your child wait up to a month for an appointment, whereas pediatric offices are more flexible to see your child as soon as possible, even the same day. If a hospital is not suited for your family, always be sure to ask what type of emergency plan a practice might have.
Will scheduling an appointment for my child become a stressful task?
The second question you should ask yourself is, ‘How convenient are the public services?’ In other words, how long are you put on hold when you call for any concerns? Granted some days are busier than others for clinics, and we are all only human, but a wait time more than five minutes for a routine phone call is “too long,” especially in emergencies.
Long holding times can also result from the lack of resources available to you. The Internet has become a widely used and preferred resource for purchases of goods and services. Instead of waiting on the phone to book an appointment, request medical records or prescriptions you can simply visit the practice’s website to service your needs. This may be another option to consider when choosing a doctor.
You want to verify the office accepts the child’s insurance and request a free tour of the clinic if offered. This will give you the chance to meet with the doctors and staff and ask any question you may have. You will be able to gain a good perspective on the distance between the clinic and your home.
Does the Pediatrician have multiple specialties?
Did you know some Pediatricians specialize in multiple fields in addition to basic pediatric care? These specialties can include ADHD, allergy, asthma, obesity, and many more. This is very beneficial to you if your child suffers from a chronic condition. Most practices provide in-house testing in order to provide a diagnosis at the time of visit.
I hope these tips ease your stress of finding the perfect doctor for your family. Nothing is more important than your child’s health; find a doctor who believes that too.