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Wednesday, December 03, 2008
The 22 Best Questions To Ask Your Kid's Doctor

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By Grace Chen

Going to the doctor can be an anxious time for both kids and their parents. However, if you know what questions to ask (and when to ask them) you will be better prepared for whatever the doctor visit will bring to you. Here is a look at just some of the things you should be asking your child’s doctor.Questions to ask your new pediatrician.

Before The Interview:

When looking for a new doctor, you will want to do some interviews first to make sure that the doctor is going to meet your needs and preferences. Before you go, you will want to double check that the doctor accepts your insurance and is taking new patients, and also that he or she is affiliated with a hospital near you.

Questions To Ask:

Once you have scheduled an interview with your potential doctor, there are some things that you will want to be sure to ask. These include:

  1. How long have you been a doctor?
  2. How long have you worked at this practice
  3. Do you have specialty?
  4. What training do you have in pediatrics?
  5. How involved do you allow parents to be in the decision-making?
  6. How do you feel about holistic medicine?
  7. What experience do you have with _____ issue that my family has dealt with? (This can be any medical condition/problem that you have dealt with in the past and might need care for in the future.)
  8. What is your well child visit schedule?
  9. How often will my child see another doctor or a nurse?
  10. Do you send out appointment/immunization reminders?
  11. What type of hours do you have? What is the policy for evening, weekend, and holiday appointments?
  12. Can I get appointments same day if my child is sick? Will that appointment be with you?
  13. Do you have an advice line? When can I call it? How long does it take for messages to be returned?
  14. Do you accept email questions?
  15. How do you handle emergency calls? How do you handle calls after hours?
  16. Are tests run in house or where do I need to go?
  17. Who do I talk to about billing questions and insurance claims?

After The Appointment:

Once you have had the interview, there are other important points that you will want to consider. This includes how the doctor answered questions and if he or she volunteered information and if you felt like the doctor was listening to your concerns. You will want to consider how child friendly the office is and whether the doctor and staff seemed to be patient and really like children. Even more importantly, you will want to consider whether or not the doctor had similar views to you in regards to caring for your child. Does he or she have the same views on alternative medicine, discipline, co-sleeping, breastfeeding, and other parenting techniques?

Questions To Ask After A Diagnosis:

If your child is diagnosed with an illness or condition, you will have other questions that you will want to ask your doctor. These include:

  1. What can I do for my child now to make him/her more comfortable?
  2. What should I tell my child?
  3. Is there any concern about children my child comes in contact with?
  4. What’s the next step?
  5. What should I do if I have more questions?

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