Having a baby is one of the most life-altering experiences you may encounter. As gratifying and joyous as it may be to have a little one of your own, you will nevertheless be faced with the daunting task of looking after the well-being of the baby. You will need to make several adjustments in your life and surroundings as well as make important decisions.
One of the most important decisions you will need to make is choosing a paediatrician for your new baby. It is important to choose a paediatrician for your baby who will not only cater to your needs but will also look after the well-being of your baby in the best possible way. They should be emotionally and physically equipped to provide age-appropriate care to your child and must be able to answer your concerns and questions as well as guide you in looking after your child’s welfare.
In this article, we have highlighted a few tips you can consider to select a paediatrician for your baby.
Get a Head Start
Experts advise that you should ideally choose a paediatrician at least three months before the baby comes. It is important to plan in advance and start looking for a paediatrician way before the baby is due. During the first few days, even weeks, you will be frequently visiting the paediatrician’s office for checkups and vaccinations.
Not to mention the visits you may be made on account of the baby contracting some illness or in case you panic at some alarming development and need to rush the baby to the clinic. It is therefore important to have a paediatrician lined up before the baby comes along. You will gain familiarity with the paediatrician’s office and the staff in the meantime and will be comforted by the thought that the baby will be in good hands once it is born.
You may have to compile a list based on the suggestions you receive from friends, family or the neighbourhood in general. Based on the factors that are important to you, you can evaluate and choose the one that you consider will be the right fit for you.
Factors to consider
Let us look at some of the important factors to consider when choosing a paediatrician for the baby:
Location of Clinic
Consider the location of the paediatrician’s office. As mentioned earlier, during the first year alone you will be frequenting the paediatrician’s clinic on a regular basis for various purposes, such as vaccinations and checkups. It is only sensible that the clinic is in close proximity to your accommodation so that getting there is not a hassle. Also in times of emergency, you will be able to reach there in a short amount of time.
Working Hours and Communication
Also, deliberate over the operating hours of the clinic. If the doctor is able to give same day appointments or can be accessed at off-hours, that is a very instrumental quality to have in your child’s paediatrician.
Moreover, you may also need to look at the communication channel of the clinic. Do they have an online portal that you can easily access to secure appointments online and look at reports? If the channel is open and easy to use, it is a huge plus.
Your Insurance Plan
You will need to ask if the clinic accepts your current health insurance plan so that payment settlement for treatment is not an issue afterwards
Certifications and Training
The paediatrician you choose must be certified and should have completed their degree and residency with recognized institutes. Fiona Tan, a carrier oil business women states that it is important to ascertain that they are receiving training on a regular basis so as to stay up to date with new developments in the field of child care medicine.
Communication with You and Your Baby
During your initial visits, you can assess how the paediatrician interacts with you and your baby. Observe if they demonstrate patience and compassion and are friendly with you and your baby. They must be able to listen to you when you voice your concerns and give appropriate value to them so that you feel comfortable in sharing your apprehensions and queries.
Not only that, but you may also want to look at the general environment of the clinic. Is the environment friendly enough and do you see yourself coming here to seek treatment for your baby without any stress? If the answer to these questions is yes, then the paediatrician is the right choice
Questions to Ask
During your shortlisting and evaluation process, when you visit the paediatrician, there are a few questions you can ask.
You can ask about the expertise of the team and the facilities that the clinic offers. If the clinic is offering special services like nutritional consultations or behavioural coaching, you can find a lot under a single roof and that is very favourable for you
You can also ask some pertinent questions from the paediatrician like their approach to child care, the number of visits they will be scheduled during the course of the year and any other measures that they expect you to take as parents of the baby.