How do You Pick Your Child’s Doctors?
When my two-year-old son’s pediatrician diagnosed him with yet another ear infection last month, he recommended that Levi get ear tubes. We walked out of his office with the name of an ENT he liked scribbled on a prescription pad.
“Well, let’s call this ENT and schedule an appointment,” said my husband very matter-of-factly.
“Wait,” I argued, “don’t we need to do our research? How do we know she’s the best person to perform surgery on our son?”
My husband simply replied that, because he trusted the pediatrician, he trusted the pediatrician’s referral. I trust Levi’s doctor too, but I don’t make decisions about anything—whether it’s face wash or a vacation destination—without doing my homework first. I’m especially thorough when it comes to healthcare; before Levi was born, we interviewed three different pediatricians before making our final decision!
So that evening I polled my local Facebook friends for pediatric ENT referrals. Unfortunately, of the seven or so who replied, nobody recommended the same doctor! I was hoping that at least two people who have agreed on a doctor. After all, Omaha is not a huge city.
One by one, my husband and I began to Google the doctors suggested to us on Facebook. We checked the homepages of their practices and their resumes. Where were they educated and trained? Had they received any awards or special recognitions?
Eventually we narrowed down the candidates to one and decided to make a consultation appointment with both him and the ENT referred to us by the pediatrician. Overkill? Maybe. But surgery on a two year old—even surgery as brief as inserting ear tubes—is a big deal, especially when it’s your two year old on the table. And I’m not going to let anybody operate on my son without vetting them first.
If you were in my position, would you have simply trusted the pediatrician’s recommendation? Or do you ask your friends for their suggestions? How do you pick your child’s doctors?