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Pediatricians play quite an important role in the life of most young children, and it is crucial to find a doctor that you trust for your baby. Interviewing pediatricians during pregnancy, and hopefully being able to pick one you like a month or two before your baby makes his or her entrance into the world, will save you the stress of looking for a doctor after your baby is already born, and perhaps having to settle for one you don't really like. We think it is a good idea to interview at least two pediatricians for your baby during your pregnancy, or possibly more if you are still looking for a good match. What should you ask a pediatrician? That depends on your personal needs, of course. Here are some suggestions for you.

What are your working hours? Can we call you in case of emergencies, 24 hours a day? Will you make house calls, or do children always need to come into the office, even if they are very sick? Do you provide separate waiting rooms for healthy and for sick children in your office? What are your opinions about delayed vaccination schedules, or about not vaccinating (if applicable)? Are you supportive of breastfeeding? What kind of advice do you offer in case of certain challenges? (Some pediatricians see switching to formula as the one-size fits all answer to almost every problem, from rapid weight gain to slow growth, to stomach cramps. Such pediatricians are not a good fit for breastfeeding moms) Check if the pediatrician in question takes your insurance, and whether they charge an additional fee for any services if so, which? Are there any parts of routine medical care/ well baby checkups that are done outside of your pediatrician's office? If so, which ones? If your pediatrician is unavailable for whatever reason, how does the backup system work?

If you are interested in other items on your pregnancy to-do list, look at What do you need for your baby's nursery, and Shopping for your baby.

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