Friday, August 7, 2009

Which Is More Important?

I am curious to hear your thoughts on this one:

Which is more important: your pediatrician him/herself or the office/hospital in which your pediatrician practices in?

If you've been following this blog for a while you already know that we have loved Riley's pediatrician - Dr. K- since the first day I interviewed him, when I was just 30 weeks pregnant. He is an amazing doctor - named one of Ohio's top doctors in 2008. Even more important to me is that he is a parent himself, so he can relate to your concerns and questions. He is never quick to just answer us - he always provides background to his medical decisions or my silly questions. I love it. And he loves kids. Done deal.

When Riley was born, Dr. K was practicing at Cleveland Clinic. I love their pediatrics department. It is amazingly clean, upbeat, and tailored for kids, as it should be, in my opinion. Heck - if I were a kid, I may just like going to the doctor since I'd get to visit an enormous waiting room with beautiful murals painted on the wall, a gigantic (CLEAN) fish tank, and toys and books galore! (All of which are sanitized by an outside company after anyone as much as touches them, by the way!). And the rooms are sparkling and everything just looks NEW. Plus, maybe it is because of my IT background, but I love that everything is electronic at the clinic. They have this wonderful online feature called "MyChart" that allows me to have all the information from every single one of Riley's doctor visits at my fingertips wherever internet access is available, plus I can request appointments and talk to nurses electronically as well!

So do I have you all sold on moving to take advantage of the Clinic?

So back to the initial question. At the end of June, Dr. K left Cleveland Clinic for another very well respected hospital in the area. We were thrilled to see that he was going to a hospital where our insurance is accepted because the last thing we wanted was to lose Dr. K as Riley's pediatrician.

Today was my first visit to him in his new office (nothing major - Riley has a rash that they just wanted to take a look at). The minute I walked in I was disappointed. Where were the bright colors? And the fun toys? And what about a fish tank? When is the last time this place had a fresh coat of paint? And the rooms themselves - very drab and lacking anything to keep an 8-month old busy while waiting for the doctor. Where the heck is the computer? You're not telling me that they actually keep your child's health record (gasp!!) by hand, are you!? Sure they do.

Of course, a lot of the things I've mentioned are "nice to haves", but some are very important to me. I felt better once Dr. K walked in and gave us the amazing care he always has, but I walked out wondering if he is happy with the choice he has made.

Which should be more important to me - being with the pediatrician we've grown to love or being in a setting that we love and that Riley will enjoy, when not feeling her best?

What do you all think? Which is more important to you?

3 hugs and kisses:

My life as a Home Engineer on August 11, 2009 at 4:13 PM said...

Good Question. Honestly I would stay with the doctor. I too have a pediatrician that I absolutely love and would be so hurt if he left. It's kind of like what you said, he not only has children of his own but thankfully he's had a child who was a late talker like Nathan so we relate to him on so many different levels. And he's so rational and just good at what he does and Sam and I trust his medical expertise. And I'm not positive but I'm pretty sure he's Christian too, not that that should matter but I kind of like that though.

It was funny reading your posts about the colorful stuff the office have. LOL now that I think about it, the office the children go to is brand new but not really colorful (neutral paint), I hadn't noticed. I honestly think we as parents notice that more than the children. I don't let Nathan and Peyton touch anything in the office anyhow because I just don't like them playing there LOL I've seen so many snotty noses in the toy area it's not even funny. I'll usually bring them toys but if they fall on the floor then I have to sterilize it first. LOL I'm really bad because I don't even care for them to interact with the other children because I have no clue why they're there. The office have well baby visit times, however, anyone really sick can still get an appt if necessary so you never know. LOL I could go on and on about this topic, I'm probably more extreme then anyone you've every met, but my children have both gotten sick as young babies so I'm not nice about little children walking up in a doctors office or them touching anything there. At a playground, fine but doctors office no. But I love the practice and love the doctor so if he left, and didn't move out of the state I think I'd follow no matter where he went. I just love having the kids under his care.

Now if he moved under another hospital...now that would be a hard one to answer. Mine is under University Hospitals and I love UH. When we had to rush Peyton to the hospital in may the closest was Metro and she ended up staying there for a few days out from under his care and it was horrible. I don't know if the hospital was actually bad though but I was biased because her doctor couldn't be in the loop (loonnng story). So not sure if that would be a big deal or not.

Nathan has to be rushed to UH when he was little because he hadn't urinated in awhile and we had a good experience and I know the clinic is wonderful too. LOL although I'm kind of biased about them because I used to go to family practicioners there and they always leave or move up etc. so I quit going to them just because at some point they always disappeared.

My life as a Home Engineer on August 11, 2009 at 4:13 PM said...

WOW sorry about the book! I didn't realize I'd typed so much!

Megan Balaban on August 11, 2009 at 7:33 PM said...

LaToya - I loved reading your "book"! It means so much to me to see response to my writing and my questions, so thank you! Did you read my post "Bubble Babies"? I think you and the author of that article (I have a link to the article - check it out) would have a nice argument!!! =)