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Picking a Pediatrician That’s Right for You and Your Baby

One of the first important questions to ask yourself as a new parent is "how do I choose the right pediatrician?" and "how do I even begin to look for a pediatrician?"

Many things come into play when starting the search for a new pediatrician. Let us help you make that search easier. Follow this guide to help you know what to look out for and what questions you should ask a potential pediatrician.

Start off with research. Whether it's from an online source such as the American Academy of Pediatrics' referral site at www.aap.org/referral, or recommendations from a friend, compile a list of 3-6 pediatricians that you would like to meet. Take into consideration the office's location. You will be spending a lot of time here, so a short commute is essential.

Meet with the pediatrician in person. During this interview is when you can ask vital questions. Here are some questions you shouldn't skip:

  1. What is your availability?
  2. Is this a group practice, and if so what are the chances that you will see my child?
  3. Who is on call when the office is closed? A nurse or you?
  4. What hospital are you affiliated with?
  5. How do you feel about breastfeeding or circumcision?
  6. What is your opinion on vaccines?

Once you ask the basic questions, you should have a vague idea if this pediatrician is right for your child. Decide if you "click" with the doctor. Do they seem sympathetic and comforting, or are they rushed and inattentive? Also take your surroundings into account. Are there toys in the waiting room and is the office staff helpful and friendly? All of these little checks add up to the bigger picture, picking a pediatrician that is best for you and your family.

Torrance Memorial Physician Network is home to a number of skilled pediatricians. To learn more about our physicians, click here.