Choosing a Pediatrician

Perhaps the most important person in the life of a young mother, is the pediatrician. How can you find one good enough for your baby?

Here’s a checklist of what to look for: –

  • The credentials of the doctor- Don’t be fooled by a long string of letters – they may not mean much. If you have any doubts ask what the letters stand for.
  • The hospitals he is affiliated to- Check out their benefits for you in terms of location, expense and infrastructural support
  • The recommendations of his other patients, if you know any.
  • The location of his clinic – is it very far away from your residence? Can it be easily reached during rush hour or in an emergency ?
  • How accessible is he? Does he have such a rushed schedule that he can only see you for a few minutes after a long wait?
  • Are the timings convenient for you? Does she do phone visits?
  • Does he take the time to listen to all you want to say? Remember he may know the theory inside out, but you are the expert on your own child – does he respect that?
  • Does she take the time to explain things to you and your child or is she arrogant with a tendency to talk down to you?
  • What is the doctor’s approach – does he perceive himself only as a healer of illnesses or is his emphasis also on the creation of all round well being for the baby?
  • How does your child react to him? Does she like him?
  • Is she easily affordable? If she is not you may be tempted to put off going to her as long as you can.
  • Most importantly, does he inspire confidence in you and your child? Sometimes even if all other points are in his favour, you may still not feel a complete trust in his abilities. Follow your instincts and look for another doctor, as trust is vital in this relationship.

The mother is the most important factor in the doctor-patient relationship in Paediatrics. As the patient, the baby, cannot describe his symptoms, diagnosis is entirely dependent on the third party observation of the mother. Therefore don’t underestimate your role and try to provide as much information as possible to help the doctor.

Things to remember when consulting with your doctor-

  • Always keep pen and paper handy for notes. This holds true of telephone calls as well as clinic visits.
  • Before talking to the doctor, list all the things you want to ask him so that you don’t forget.
  • When visiting the doctor take a few small games or books to keep her diverted through a possibly long wait.
  • Before you leave for your appointment always check whether the appointments are on time, so that you don’t wait for too long
  • Take all the medical papers along.
  • Speak up – you’re the expert on your child
  • If you don’t understand something don’t feel shy or embarrassed to ask. It’s your child and your money.
  • If you are not satisfied, get a second opinion. But don’t try to second guess the doctor without reliable alternative feedback.
  • Don’t medicate on your own.

To find more doctors, Refer to medical tourism

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