At one time, pediatricians were chosen based on referrals and geographical location. It was not uncommon for a pediatrician to have treated other family members. In some instances, pediatricians had been in practice for so long that they treated the mother and child. Due to health insurance restrictions, most people are limited to those pediatricians within their network. The network can consist of hundreds of pediatricians in a relatively small geographical area. The chances of your child being treated by a well referred pediatrician are slim.
Here are some things to consider when choosing a pediatrician for your child.
- Interview the pediatricians at the office before making a final decision. Is there a separate area for sick and well children? Is the waiting room clean? Does there seem to be an unusually long wait time? Ask some of the other moms about their experiences with the pediatricians.
- Observe the staff. Do they seem friendly and willing to assist, or over worked and stressed out? Since you will be having most of your contact with the staff, it is important that they are willing to assist when you need them most. If they are overworked and stressed out, it may indicate that the office overbooks patients. That would mean very long wait times for you.