Hi, Cool Dad.
What a great question! I have three kids of my own (13, 12, and 6). Choosing a pediatrician felt kind of like choosing a best friend when I went through the process. The reason is because you are going to spend quite a bit of time in this person’s office! Here are a few tips: 1) Look at the facility. Is it clean and well-maintained? Is ample parking available? Is the area safe and well-lit, in case you end up leaving the office at dusk? 2) How did the office staff treat you? Is there something for kids to do in the waiting room? My pediatrician’s office has a TV with kids’ movies constantly playing. This is a lifesaver! 3) Do they take your insurance? Do they take new patients? Are there other doctors on call in case your pediatrician is on vacation? 4) Which hospital do they service for rounds? For example, in my hometown most pediatricians either go to one hospital or another, and it’s important to know which one! 5) Is there a daily sick call time? This is a walk-in time, usually in the morning. This is important, especially if it’s is difficult to get same-day appointments. 6) Do you like the nurses? Nurses can make a huge difference in the quality of your care. There are many other factors I didn’t list, so be sure to check out some of the many online articles.
We are very strong supporters of positive discipline so it really helped to ask around and get a few referrals for some pediatricians that are in line with our beliefs. This is how we found our current pediatrician who has been amazing in helping us understand the cognitive development stages, which has helped us be less frustrated when we expected he should know how to do or not do something already. It really helped us be more patient and understanding.