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What to ask when looking for a pediatrician?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created June 14, 2011 at 8:12 PM

We are moving and switching pediatricians. The current one I have wasn't necessarily paleo but he did lean more toward home remedies before prescription drugs. We are moving from Washington DC to Richmond, VA so the pool of pediatricians will ultimately be smaller. Are there any suggestions on questions I should ask when visiting these offices so I get the best one possible more my children?

Da8e709acde269e8b8bfbc09d1737841

(1906)

on July 08, 2011
at 06:07 PM

If you haven't already, check out the Paleo Physicians Network and the Low Carb Doctors site to see if there's an applicable doctor on the list for your area.

1398eff69b192c35de5e0dbaad59052a

(2024)

on June 15, 2011
at 10:33 PM

http://abcnews.go.com/Health/w_ParentingResource/vaccine-refusal-contributes-rise-measles-cases/story?id=13848859

1398eff69b192c35de5e0dbaad59052a

(2024)

on June 15, 2011
at 04:18 AM

I really wish people would stop thinking vaccinations are a bad thing. There's nothing wrong with delaying and spacing, but I think far too many people don't understand how terrible a lot of these diseases really are.

Aead76beb5fc7b762a6b4ddc234f6051

(15239)

on June 14, 2011
at 11:43 PM

no doc is going to say, "yes, i frequently and enthusiastically over prescribe antibiotics." try asking how aggressive or conservative their antibiotic prescription policy is, if they have one. or something along those lines. ask a lot of open ended questions.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on June 14, 2011
at 11:19 PM

Excellent observation about reading the same stuff and knowing the same stuff (without the extra "insight" of a pharmaceutical sales rep, though). It leads to a sort of Paleo meta-question: why do we treat doctors like oracles or priests, when they're really just body mechanics? Is it because traditional shamans (I dislike the word, but whaddya gonna do) function as both priests and doctors? Where's that come from?

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117

(25472)

on June 14, 2011
at 08:24 PM

Do you over prescibe antibiotics? What diet do you recommend to your patients and Why? Those are my two interview questions. They get em wrong I'm moving on.

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6 Answers

3
1da74185531d6d4c7182fb9ee417f97f

on June 14, 2011
at 10:30 PM

I highly recommend finding a family doctor. They tend to be much more open minded and since they take care of the whole family including you and your spouse they tend to have more of a handle on your needs. I chose my doctor because he delays and selectively vaccinates and is very open to families who choose to opt out altogether. He's also a Weston a price foundation member so he was very friendly towards our Paleo diet and even recommended stewed meat, egg yolks, and liver as first baby foods! I also asked him what his stance on co-sleeping and extended breastfeeding was. He rarely if ever prescribes medicine and instead prefers homeopathic remedies, herbs and occaisionally vitamin supplements. He treats holistically instead of treating the disease and I love how laid back his office is. It's like a home rather than a medical facility and there's no alcohol based hand sanitizer to be found.

1
510bdda8988ed0d4b0ec0b738b4edb73

(20888)

on June 14, 2011
at 08:21 PM

My wife and I just switched from doctors to a group of midwives for our soon to be paleo baby. We originally went with the doctors because we thought it would be easy to use them for their services and just ignore their advice. But they started to get all holier-than-thou on us, so we just moved. What I (now) look for in a doctor is just someone who will let me make the decisions and they can give advice if they want, but I'm the final say and they shouldn't fight me. Personally, I don't care if they lean towards home remedies or prescription drugs because they're their to do what I want. Doctors are great at what they're trained at: emergency medicine and acute problems. But I don't treat them as scientists or smarter than me. I can read the same stuff they do and know the same stuff, so I use them for their skills and knowledge. I don't see a doctor on a regular basis (only go if I need prescription for an antibiotic or something - and that's very rare with a paleo diet), and I won't be taking my kid to one either.

So to answer your question: Just look for someone who will listen to you and not be pushy when you disagree.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on June 14, 2011
at 11:19 PM

Excellent observation about reading the same stuff and knowing the same stuff (without the extra "insight" of a pharmaceutical sales rep, though). It leads to a sort of Paleo meta-question: why do we treat doctors like oracles or priests, when they're really just body mechanics? Is it because traditional shamans (I dislike the word, but whaddya gonna do) function as both priests and doctors? Where's that come from?

0
F19616345b76e041cc8eb7518e67dfb9

on July 08, 2011
at 05:44 PM

Thanks for sharing this post. Locating a new pediatrician following a relocation can be time consuming. Thanks for sharing your experience with your readers.

0
1398eff69b192c35de5e0dbaad59052a

(2024)

on June 15, 2011
at 04:19 AM

The distance from D.C. to Richmond isn't that great. Could you ask your current doctor to recommend someone?

0
095ef76482234d3db444b77d7ed01c29

(2755)

on June 14, 2011
at 11:10 PM

Here's how it is. Your doc works for you, not the other way around. Just find a good one...no matter if they are "on board" with paleo or not. Like I told my kid's doc... "look man, you are one hell of a doctor, I helped run your wife out of our ER because she was an idiot...but you are a great doc...but when it comes to nutrition, you are clueless...almost a f*k*ng idiot...I'll feed my kid right, and you take care of his colds and stuff."

0
4b61b13ed39e5c5d01fe234900cadcf8

(1138)

on June 14, 2011
at 08:45 PM

How old are your children? I stopped using a pediatrician when my little boy was about 2. When I decided at 15 months to forgo any more vaccinations, he refused to see my child. We bounced around between doctors but I was limited due to my insurance at the time. I found a large practice that was ok with no vaccinations for the time being and used them a few times for his 2 year check and a few sick appointments.

Then it dawned on me- when you take a child to a yearly well appointment, but don't vaccinate, what's left? Weighing, measuring..etc. All things I could tell about my child myself. He doesn't get sick very often, but I hated taking him in a pediatric office sick, to be exposed to all the other sick children, to possibly pick up something worse. Finally, our insurance changed and my husband and I were able to go back to the doctor we loved- he runs his office as walk in only, no appointments and you can go for anything- physicals, injuries, sickness and well checkups. This is what I use now for my 3 year old if he gets sick. It is easy to tell he is growing properly, he grows out of his clothes! I don't have to answer any questions about vaccinations or diet.

Obviously if your child has health issues that need to be followed this isn't ideal, but thankfully my child has been blessed with good health so far, and I do what I can to "hack" it even more... so this approach works for us. Good luck finding a good doctor!

1398eff69b192c35de5e0dbaad59052a

(2024)

on June 15, 2011
at 04:18 AM

I really wish people would stop thinking vaccinations are a bad thing. There's nothing wrong with delaying and spacing, but I think far too many people don't understand how terrible a lot of these diseases really are.

1398eff69b192c35de5e0dbaad59052a

(2024)

on June 15, 2011
at 10:33 PM

http://abcnews.go.com/Health/w_ParentingResource/vaccine-refusal-contributes-rise-measles-cases/story?id=13848859

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