Choosing a Doctor for Baby
Baby needs a doctor — tips to find the right one.
Ideally, you’ll begin your search for your baby’s doctor sometime during the third trimester of your pregnancy. That will give you time to meet with a few physicians and choose one before baby arrives.
What type of doctor should I look for?
You’ll choose either a family-practice doctor, who can care for any member of your family at any age, or a pediatrician, who specializes in the care of babies, children and teens.
Where should I begin my search?
Just like when you were finding your maternity care provider, you can start by asking friends with kids if they’d recommend their doctor. You can also search by area to find a doctor whose clinic is located near your home. Swedish offers 19 clinic locations in the Seattle, Eastside and North End areas.
For a surprisingly fun and efficient way to choose a physician, sign up for our Baby Needs a Doctor class. You’ll meet a handful of very baby-friendly doctors at a one-hour event, where you can also ask questions and do a chemistry check.
What questions should I ask?
Many doctors who are taking new patients are happy to schedule free meet-and-greet appointments with parents. It’s a great way for you to see if you mesh well with their personality and philosophy of care. Be sure to bring along all your questions. Here are a few to get you started:
- Does your clinic offer same-day appointments?
- How do you handle after-hours calls?
- Can I call or email with questions, or should I always schedule an appointment?
- Does your clinic use electronic medical records? > Will you be able to transfer my child’s files to a hospital in case she’s admitted?
- Which hospitals are you affiliated with?
- Do you accept our insurance plan?
- What are your views on breastfeeding, circumcision, immunizations, use of antibiotics, and parenting styles?
Why should I consider a Swedish doctor?
Of course, you’re free to choose a doctor from any clinic or hospital you like. But doctors who are part of the Swedish primary-care network offer many benefits:
- Online access to your doctor and your baby’s medical records (up to age 13). You can sign up for our free MyChart service, a secure tool that lets you use your computer or mobile device to get in touch with your baby’s doctor by email. You can also request prescription renewals and office appointments, view lab and imaging results, and review a summary of your baby’s doctor visits. Never again will you have to call the doctor’s office to get a copy of your child’s immunization records.
- Seamless care within the entire Swedish network. If your child ever needs care at a Swedish emergency room, pediatric ER or hospital, or at our pediatric specialty clinics, her medical records will be instantly available electronically. That means information about your little one’s medications, allergies and any other issues is only a click away.
- Great connections. Should your child need it, our doctors can connect you to Swedish Pediatric Specialty Care. With more than 400 dedicated staff members, it’s one of the most complete pediatric programs in the region. Our pediatric specialists are board-certified in a wide range of specialties, and care for patients in outpatient clinics and in the hospital. For a list of pediatric specialists, visit www.swedish.org/pediatrics.