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? for the moms re: doctor's office visits (LONG!)

So, when we moved 6 months ago we decided to switch doctors - we liked the old Pediatrician's office, but it would have been about 45min drive, plus it was next to impossible to get an appt with our regular doc unless it was scheduled waaaay in advance. So, we found a new practice that's less than a mile from our new place. We now see a Physician's Assistant in a Family Practice and I LOOOOOOVE her. She's so amazing. . She's been nothing but encouraging and every time we see her she tells me how happy she is and how well it reflects in DD. She also clearly loves kids and give DD a big hug whenever we see her and always tells me how much she loves having her as a patient and just what a joy she thinks she is. We've also seen another PA in the office when DD had an ear infection and she was just as kind and great with DD.
So that was longwinded, but just wanted to explain how much I love her and their office. The problem is her MA. When we first started, the MA she had was also fantastic - she knew everything and has a baby, too, so she was good with kids. I understand that we're choosing to go to a Family Practice, so everything isn't geared toward kids and they're not doing Pediatrics with every patient, but now that she got a new MA, the last 3 times we've been in the girl does everything with SUCH a lack of confidence about kids! She didn't know how to measure her head circumference.  She weighs her so strangely and never really worries about whether or not DD has clothes on. Thankfully those things aren't a huge deal, DD is healthy and all, but it makes me worry - what if there is a baby that has health issues linked to these daily/routine tasks and she's not "quite" doing them right?? That could be a huge difference in a half of a pound for a baby who's sick, or to know if a really small infant is gaining weight adequately! I guess it's just hard because every time I've seen her, at some point she makes a comment apologizing because she doesn't work with babies often. She's actually asked to skip taking her temp because she wasn't holding still enough. I held DD down and we finally got it, but what if a baby had a high temp and was getting sick and they didn't know that and went ahead with certain shots??

Ok, now that I've written all of this out(and thanks if anyone's actually still readingWink ), I'm realizing that this is bothering me a bit more than I was realizing! We go on Tuesday for DD's 1 yr appt and I'm definitely going to bring it up. Any thoughts or suggestions? Am I being ridiculous and making a big deal out of nothing?? Or, if you think I'm justified in being a bit annoyed, any suggestions for ways to address it when we see the PA?

Re: ? for the moms re: doctor's office visits (LONG!)

  • This a tough one for me, but here's my opinion.  I think in your case because you know Amelia is healthy and you don't have any major health concerns going to a family practice is fine.  But you go to a family practice knowing they don't see that many kids, especially little one! 

    If I had a child that I questioned their development, health, etc, I would go immediately to a peditrician and not mess around- they specialize in children.  There is SO MUCH to medicine I think it would be hard to be update on anything more than the very basics for all age groups- infants to geriatrics- especially when most of your patients tend to be older in family practice.

    I have an example, my friend down the street was going to be delivered by her family med doc, but at 37 weeks the doc couldn't tell the position of the baby so ordered an ultrasound.  Sure enough breech baby & had been for a while, so all of a sudden she had to get an ob & schedule a section.  Her son is a lovely little boy, but he is Tessa's age and just started walking 2 months ago (17/18 months) and he says NO words.  He's happy, for sure, but as a mom I question his development (he could be a late bloomer) but I would want a pediatricians opinion- not a family med doc.  Of course, I don't say anything to my friend....

  • image PepperRN:

    This a tough one for me, but here's my opinion.  I think in your case because you know Amelia is healthy and you don't have any major health concerns going to a family practice is fine.  But you go to a family practice knowing they don't see that many kids, especially little one! 

    If I had a child that I questioned their development, health, etc, I would go immediately to a peditrician and not mess around- they specialize in children.  There is SO MUCH to medicine I think it would be hard to be update on anything more than the very basics for all age groups- infants to geriatrics- especially when most of your patients tend to be older in family practice.

    I have an example, my friend down the street was going to be delivered by her family med doc, but at 37 weeks the doc couldn't tell the position of the baby so ordered an ultrasound.  Sure enough breech baby & had been for a while, so all of a sudden she had to get an ob & schedule a section.  Her son is a lovely little boy, but he is Tessa's age and just started walking 2 months ago (17/18 months) and he says NO words.  He's happy, for sure, but as a mom I question his development (he could be a late bloomer) but I would want a pediatricians opinion- not a family med doc.  Of course, I don't say anything to my friend....

     That's a really good point. It's one of the things we weighed heavily when we were deciding - especially since we were so confident in the care we were getting before we switched. This new office is just so convenient - especially for something like ear infections, etc. And, you're right - knowing Amelia's healthy makes it a lot easier. I guess my issue isn't really for us, but more for other people. What if someone who isn't quite as educated on medical practices, etc. goes and see this person and the same thing happens and something is missed because of something so small not being done right - and they were trusting?

    I think what's really hard is the expectations that we all put on any medical professional - MAs, Nurses, Physicians, etc - we expect everyone to be an absolute expert and don't acknowledge that everyone is human! Obviously there are instances where this is more imperative than others, but it's still really hard. So, is it wrong of me to bring this up to the PA and suggest that the new MA probably needs a bit more trianing in Pediatrics? Does that make me a total jerk?? I'd rather be a jerk and see someone get the training that they need that not say anything and have something important for another baby be missed!
     

  • I would just ask the PA to confirm the measurements and do them herself if you think they are inaccurate.  Although, infant meaurements are kind of estimates- its happened three time where the MA in my pedi office comes back to measure because it doesn't jive with the previous meaurement!  Sure enough they get another number! 

    It is scary to think that some people aren't as informed, but at least they are bringing their child to a doctor which is a start.  There are so many kids who receive NO medical care, so I guess some is better than none!

  • image LClaire:

    I think what's really hard is the expectations that we all put on any medical professional - MAs, Nurses, Physicians, etc - we expect everyone to be an absolute expert and don't acknowledge that everyone is human! Obviously there are instances where this is more imperative than others, but it's still really hard. So, is it wrong of me to bring this up to the PA and suggest that the new MA probably needs a bit more trianing in Pediatrics? Does that make me a total jerk?? I'd rather be a jerk and see someone get the training that they need that not say anything and have something important for another baby be missed!
     

    If the PA is as good as you say, she notices that the MA isn't doing the best job. I think you should bring it up to the PA, but I also bet that it has and is being addressed.

    ~Dana & Horace~*~Married July 10th, 2006~
    Lilypie Fifth Birthday tickers
    image
    Photo courtesy of Ann Goldenberg Photography
  • If you're comfortable going to that practice and in general happy there, then I would just ask to NOT see the MA you don't like.  There's a nurse in our ped's office that I'm not fond of, so every time I go in, I request that he not be our nurse.  No questions asked, they want their patients to be happy and comfortable too.
  • Stupid question...what is an MA?  Is that Medical Assistant?  I am really picky so I am probably not the person to ask...I insist on seeing/having a board certified Physician for myself & my kids--I am not fan of only seeing PAs...guess you could say I am a doctor snob--LOL!  I would totally leave if I felt like someone myself or my child was seeing was not knowledgable.
    AKA Carol*Brady! IHO my upcoming 10yr Nestiversary--Back to old screenname. My own Marsha, Jan & Cindy... image Designing a Life Blog
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