When you're expecting your first baby, there are so many things to do and take care of before your baby's arrival. One thing that you'll want to be sure to do well in advance of the baby's birth is to choose a pediatrician, particularly if you've had complications or the baby is expected to come earlier than the due date. That way, you're not scrambling after the birth to find a pediatrician. Obviously, you'll consider credentials and experience when looking for a pediatrician. But here are a few tips that can help you narrow down your choices to find the best pediatrician for your family.
Do they accept your health insurance?
Most health insurance companies have interactive websites where you can go to search for a provider who accepts the health insurance, which would make things much simpler for you. If yours does not have this feature, you can call each pediatrician's office to ask whether or not they accept your health insurance.
Where is their office located?
As they say — location, location, location. Preferably, the pediatrician's office shouldn't be too far of a drive away or too difficult of a drive because, at some point, you may need to drive there with a very sick child in the backseat. Additionally, find out what the parking situation is like, particularly if it's difficult to find a parking spot near the entrance.
What are their appointment availability policies?
Most physician's offices have a set schedule of when and how many appointments are available for "sick call" and when appointments are available for "well checks". You'll want to find out how likely it is that you can call to make an appointment for a sick baby and get the appointment within hours or at least on the same day. Well checks are typically scheduled well in advance and follow the guidelines of the insurance industry. However, ask about the cancellation and rescheduling policies regarding well check visits before selecting a pediatrician.
Do their values match yours?
You may be able to find this information on some pediatrician's websites, but you'll want to find out if their values match yours and what you want for your child. Topics such as antibiotics, breastfeeding, circumcision, immunization, and co-sleeping should be considered when selecting a pediatrician. That way, working as a team with the pediatrician will be much easier because everyone is on the same page with these types of issues and topics.
For more information, reach out to a local pediatric office, like Better Family Care.