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Selecting a Pediatrician

Selecting a Pediatrician - Blog Post

Choosing the right pediatrician is a cornerstone of effective parenting. Pediatricians, who specialize in children's health, play a crucial role in the growth and well-being of newborns, infants, children, adolescents, and teens. They provide medical care, education, advocacy, and support for healthy habits, significantly influencing parenting approaches and children's health values.

For many new parents, searching for a pediatrician marks their first encounter with pediatric care as adults. Recommendations often come from relatives and friends. Verifying that any potential pediatrician is board-certified and accepts your family’s health insurance is essential. Ideally, your pediatrician's office should be conveniently located to ensure timely access to medical support.

Interviewing Pediatricians: 

New parents should feel empowered to interview pediatricians about their practices. Here are some suggested questions to help evaluate potential candidates:

  1. Practice Size and Pediatrician Gender Preference: Consider whether you prefer a smaller practice for a more personal touch or a larger one for broader availability. Some parents also prefer a pediatrician of the same gender as their child, especially considering future adolescent care.

  2. On-call Procedures: Understand how the practice handles after-hours queries or emergencies.

  3. Vaccination Policy: Confirm the pediatrician's stance on vaccinations and whether they accommodate spacing out vaccinations for infants.

  4. New Parent Support: Assess if the practice is welcoming to new parents and their questions, ensuring a supportive environment.

  5. Waiting Room Logistics: Inquire about measures to protect newborns from exposure to sick children and whether it's possible to wait outside or in a separate area until your appointment.

  6. Waiting Area Configuration: Ask if there are separate waiting areas for healthy and sick children to minimize the risk of infection.

  7. Hospital Affiliations: Make sure the pediatrician can admit patients to a hospital that accepts your insurance.

  8. Breastfeeding Support: Check if the practice supports breastfeeding, including having a lactation consultant (IBCLC) available.

  9. Recognition of Lip and Tongue Ties: Find out if the pediatrician can diagnose conditions like lip or tongue ties that may affect breastfeeding.

  10. Fees for Documents: Ask about any charges for completing forms or providing copies of medical records.

  11. Diversity and Inclusion: Ensure the practice supports diverse family structures and has a staff that reflects this diversity.

  12. Office Hours: Consider the convenience of office hours, including the availability of late or weekend appointments.

  13. Pharmacy Information: Keep your local pharmacy's contact details handy for prescriptions.

It's also beneficial to check online reviews of pediatricians to learn from other parents' experiences.

This is a heartfelt note of appreciation for Dr. Peter Gergely of Gergely Pediatrics in Garrison, NY. He has provided over 20 years of exceptional care to my son and supported me immensely as a single parent!


Denise Bolds, Bold Doula

Hi, I'm Denise

I'm Bold Doula, a passionate birth doula who advocates for empowering birth experiences. If you're looking for support or guidance on your journey to parenthood, please reach out. I'd love to help you navigate this transformative time with confidence and care!

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