Choosing A Pediatrician
Choosing a pediatrician is an important decision in the care of your child. Within the first year of life, your child will be spending a lot of time with the pediatrician for well-care visits. You want to feel confident in your choice of pediatrician not only during these visits, but also in case of sickness. A good pediatrician-patient relationship is important because it can last until age 21.
At Henry Ford, our pediatricians practice at dozens of locations across south eastern and south central Michigan. Where ever you are in these regions, there is a Henry Ford pediatrician nearby. Our pediatricians provide primary care services such as checkups, immunizations and prevention, and treatment of common childhood illnesses like ear infections.
If you have a child with a chronic condition such as diabetes or asthma, our doctors are here to help you manage the condition, as well as educate you and your child on how to manage it from home. We also have pediatric specialists that deal in advanced medical and surgical care of children with special issues.
Where do I start?
A great place to start when looking for a pediatrician is to ask your OB/GYN for a referral. Your OB/GYN will be able to suggest a pediatrician that fits your needs. Our pediatricians are happy to meet with parents before the baby is born so you can ask questions and get to know them.
Questions to ask a pediatrician
- Do they have same-day appointments?
- Do they accept my insurance?
- How soon will the pediatrician see my child?
- Is the doctor available by phone or e-mail?
- What happens in case of an emergency?
- What hospitals do they prefer to use if my child needs to be hospitalized?
- What if the pediatrician is unavailable?
- What is the well-baby visit schedule?
Why is a prenatal visit with a pediatrician important?
The purpose of a prenatal visit is to help you select a pediatrician for your baby and to establish a long-term, supportive relationship. We highly recommend that you schedule one, and that both parents attend, if possible.
Treat the visit like an interview. Feel free to ask questions and discuss your concerns, anxieties and expectations. The physician will introduce his or herself, outline their care philosophy and share schedules for well-child visits and immunizations. While individual styles may vary, most pediatricians emphasize family-centered care, continuity, and accessibility.
Be sure to ask about:
- The physician’s presence at delivery of your baby
- How to reach your physician if your baby is ill or you have questions about care
- Office hours and after-hours arrangements
- Timing and frequency of office visits and immunizations