Shopping For A Pediatrician

It's never too early to start shopping for a pediatrician—after all, you’ll need to choose a doctor for your baby before he or she is born. When interviewing potential pediatricians for your baby, you’ll want to think about which qualifications, experience and policies are most important to you. Here is a list of helpful questions from the American Academy of Pediatrics to help you choose.

  • What hospital would be used if your child needed to be admitted?
  • Can you get to your baby’s doctor’s office easily? Is it accessible by car or public transportation, and close to work, home or daycare? 
  • Will their office hours work for you? If you’re a working parent, you may need evening or weekend hours. 
  • What’s the pediatrician’s policy on taking and returning phone calls? 
  • Is there a nurse in the office who can answer routine questions? 
  • Is this a group practice with other pediatricians? Do they cover for each other? Who handles phone calls when the office is closed or during vacations? 
  • Do the doctor and office staff appear courteous, attentive and patient, or did you feel rushed? 
  • How are visits for acute illnesses handled? Can you make an appointment on short notice if your child needs to see the pediatrician because of a sore throat, for example? 
  • Do the doctor and nursing staff communicate clearly, using clear language (not medical jargon) to explain illnesses and treatments? Does the doctor make an effort to answer all your questions? 
  • What are the doctor's fees for sick visits, routine exams and immunizations? What's the office policy for processing insurance forms? In which managed care programs does the doctor participate?
  • Will the doctor coordinate care among other doctors or specialists, should your child ever need it?
Click here to find a pediatrician.