Every mom wants the best for her baby, and the relationship you have with your pediatrician is absolutely crucial. If you’re like most new parents out there you might be frantically searching for the right doctor well before your baby is even born. There is plenty of time to find the right fit, and the doctor that delivers your child won’t necessarily be the one you stick with through your newborn’s childhood. But you are wise not to wait until after the birth, because it will take a lot of time to look over every conceivable option. To help avoid overwhelm, check out these five tips for choosing a doctor for your new baby.
Before you take the time to head into anyone’s office you should do a bit of research. The best way to start the process is to collect recommendations from trusted friends and associates. Chances are you have girlfriends who have already had children, so pick their brains for the best doctors they have come across. A personal recommendation goes a long way, because you’ll receive insight into the process of working with that doctor through someone who has firsthand experience.
If no one you know has children yet or no one is really enthusiastic about their choice it’s time to hit the internet. These days the web has information on absolutely every doctor out there, and many of them are even reviewed on Yelp. Look for reviews that discuss all of the practices in your area, and look for reviews that call out specific doctors as well. If you start to see the same names praised over and over again by different people over a long time period, you can rest assured that doctor is probably a great choice.
With the patient reviews you should be able to pare down your big list to maybe half a dozen possibilities. Now you should head to their individual websites and do some further research. What are their hours? Do they take your insurance? Also check out the information on the American Academy of Pediatrics website. They can tell you about each doctor’s training and history. Make sure you are comfortable with their track record, their length of experience and the various board certifications they hold.
At this point you’ve done all the research you can do without heading to the doctors’ actual offices. So set up consultations with your list of finalists. You should ideally have in the neighborhood of three options to choose between. Check out their facilities, and if you’ve already given birth bring your baby with you. Remember that some doctors will charge for these consultations, so call their offices in advance to see if they hold any sort of free greeting and information sessions. You’ll want to experience each doctor, check out their manner and formulate an overall first impression. If you don’t get a good ‘vibe’ from a doctor, cross him off your list.
Finally, use the doctor for something small to see how it feels to be a patient in his care. The ideal is to go to him for a prenatal checkup. You’ll get to see how the office manager’s work, to see if you are treated well and don’t have to wait too long before being seen. The doctor should put you at ease and take the time to answer all of your questions. Just keep in mind that anyone can have a bad day. If you have two or three negative experiences then that is a reason to look elsewhere. Check out http://www.premierpatientline.co.uk if you’ve struck out and need some more recommendations.