7 Things to Consider When Choosing a Pediatric Specialist

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University Hospitals Rainbow Babies & Children'sExperts in Children's Health
Group of children blowing bubbles

Every parent knows the importance of choosing the right pediatrician for their child. They are a trusted partner to monitor and manage your child’s physical and behavioral development; answer your questions; provide medical advice and emotional support; and administer vaccinations and boosters according to recommended guidelines. A pediatrician and a pediatric dentist may be the only medical professionals they will need to keep them healthy throughout their childhood and adolescence.

Dealing with the Unexpected

Occasionally, however, life throws parents a curveball and the unexpected can occur with their child’s health. Problems may happen before, during or after delivery, or at any time over the next 18-21 years. Some health issues may be congenital (present at birth) while others may be acquired due to injury, illness or trauma. Still others may be genetic – presenting with symptoms when the child reaches a certain developmental stage.

Whatever the issue and whenever it arises, your pediatrician will recommend that your child be seen by a pediatric specialist with advanced expertise in a specific area of care.

How to Choose a Pediatric Specialist

It is very important that you feel comfortable with the selection of your child’s specialist – they will, after all, be caring for your most valuable asset.

It is a good idea to learn more about the specialist and their team or even connect with them before making the appointment. Here are some important questions to ask as you consider your decision:

  1. Are they board-certified in their specialty?
  2. Do they have advanced fellowship-training in their area of expertise?
  3. How many years of experience do they have?
  4. Do they relate well to me and my child? Does their support/office staff seem friendly and child-focused?
  5. Are they responsive and easy to contact during and after office hours?
  6. Does my pediatrician know and recommend them?
  7. Are they affiliated with a well-respected children’s hospital?

Number seven is particularly important. The health system you choose to care for your child should have the capacity to seamlessly manage their health and any health problems that may arise from before birth to adulthood. This continuity of care is essential for optimal outcomes.

UH Rainbow Specialists Are Recognized for Their Advanced Expertise

University Hospitals Rainbow Babies & Children’s is recognized by many as the “birthplace” of modern neonatology – our doctors pioneered early research around the importance of parent/infant bonding and developed therapies and care protocols that improve patient outcomes. These protocols are now universally taught to medical students and residents everywhere.

In 2022-23, U.S. News & World Report ranks UH Rainbow among the nation’s top children’s hospitals in nine medical and surgical specialties, including:

Neonatalology. UH Rainbow is ranked number 10 in the nation for specialized care for ill or premature newborn infants who experience health problems in the first 28 days of life or longer related to prematurity, illness or congenital disease. In addition, we have a Level IV NICU – the highest level certified by Ohio – and a Neuro-Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (Neuro-NICU) housed within the same space. The Neuro-NICU is the first unit of its kind in Northeast Ohio to provide specialized neurological care for newborns.

Diabetes & Endocrinology. Expertise in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of metabolic and hormone-related conditions in children, including diabetes and thyroid disorders.

Orthopedics. Medical and surgical orthopedic care for congenital and acquired conditions of the muscles, bones and joints.

Pulmonology. Multidisciplinary expertise in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of lung diseases in children, including asthma, cystic fibrosis and sleep disorders.

Cancer. Advanced hematology and oncology services for children, adolescents and young adults with cancer and blood disorders.

Nephrology. Specialized care for a full spectrum of kidney disorders in children, including very complex disease requiring dialysis and/or transplantation.

Gastroenterology & GI Surgery. Advanced diagnostics and treatment for a wide range of digestive disorders, including bowel and bladder diseases.

Urology. Expertise in diagnosing and treating urologic conditions that may range from urinary tract infections to complex congenital anomalies of the reproductive organs, kidneys or bladder.

Cardiology & Open Heart Surgery. Advanced medical and surgical care for congenital heart problems in neonates, infants, children and teenagers.

In addition, UH Rainbow, a full service children’s hospital and pediatric academic medical center, has specialists in 16 medical and 10 surgical divisions who provide the most advanced care available in pediatric allergy/immunology, dermatology, development behavioral pediatrics & psychology, neurology, neurosurgery, ophthalmology, otolaryngology (ENT), pediatric surgery, plastic surgery, rheumatology, sports medicine, trauma and emergency care. So, you can be confident that, regardless of the type of health problem your child may face, UH Rainbow can provide the highly specialized medical and surgical care they need, and the peace of mind parents want.

Related Link

UH Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital is ranked by U. S. News & World Report as one of the top children’s hospitals in the country. We provide an extensive network of exceptional primary and specialty care for children of all ages at convenient locations throughout the region.

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