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Choosing the Right Pediatrician for Your Family

If you are pregnant, relocating, switched insurance providers, unhappy with your current pediatrician, or are simply in need of a pediatrician, there are a few things to consider.

If you are pregnant, relocating, switched insurance providers, unhappy with your current pediatrician, or are simply in need of a pediatrician, there are a few things to consider.

Choosing a Pediatrician

Start the search early. Many factors may influence whether or not you will have access to the pediatrician of your choosing:

  • If they accept your insurance
  • If they are accepting new patients
  • If your healthcare goals align, i.e.) vaccinations
  • If they are culturally responsive to your needs, i.e.) language, religious, or otherwise
  • If they offer services or access to the resources you require, i.e.) special needs care

Many women who are pregnant start the search for a pediatrician in the second trimester. Make sure to choose carefully, ideally this medical doctor will provide care for your child into adulthood. Pediatricians are licensed to provide care for infants, adolescents, and children up to the age of 21.

Role of the Pediatrician

The primary role of the pediatrician is preventive care for healthy children and medical care for children with illnesses. Routine well-child checks are imperative to ensure that your child is developing appropriately and that any detected difficulties or disorders are diagnosed and treated. They offer a variety of services which may include immunizations, education, prescribing medication, and evaluation of growth and development. Having a pediatrician is like a primary care doctor for children. They will see their pediatrician provider first and if more care is needed the pediatrician can refer to other pediatricians in subspecialties like neonatal and cardiology.

You will see your child’s pediatrician regularly at well-child checks and immunizations.

The Right Fit for your Family

Write a list of the things you are looking for in a pediatrician. Ask friends, relatives and your OBGYN provider for referrals. Research the referred providers on their websites, as well as google and social reviews. Narrow down your options. Schedule 10 minute interviews with more than one pediatrician to get a feel for their bedside manner. Ask the right questions:

Questions to ask friends and relatives:

  • Do you feel rushed at your appointments?
  • Are all your questions and concerns addressed by your pediatrician?
  • Do your children like their pediatrician?
  • How are emergencies handled on the weekend or after hours?
  • Does the pediatrician include you in the decision-making process?
  • Does your pediatrician explain the side effects and risks of various medications?
  • Does your pediatrician respect your opinion? For example, how does your pediatrician respond if you choose not to vaccinate your child?

Questions to ask the Pediatrician:

  • What is your educational background and training?
  • What hospital would you admit my child to in an emergency?
  • What is your philosophy about breastfeeding?
    For example, do you make referrals to lactation consultants?
  • Do you have separate waiting areas for sick and healthy children?
  • What is your philosophy about circumcision and the use of antibiotics?
  • If you are unavailable when I call, will your nurse be available?
  • Does your office accept my insurance plan or make other payment arrangements?

The Bluestem Health Option

Bluestem Health is an extraordinary pediatric option in Lincoln, Nebraska because not only do they provide comprehensive and quality care for children, their clinics have providers for all ages from infants to seniors. They are a clinic that grows with you and they also offer dental services. Additionally, Bluestem Health also accepts medicare, medicaid, and CHIP as well as all other insurance providers and have a sliding scale fee. The Children’s Health Insurance Program, or CHIP is an extension of Medicaid for children who have no insurance or who do not qualify for Medicaid.

As a federally qualified health Center, Bluestem Health participates in Nebraska’s Medicaid Program. There are a variety of health services they provide for their patients, including but not limited to those listed below, that are covered by the Nebraska Medicaid program.

  • Dental Services such as cleaning of teeth, fillings, and X-rays.
  • Complete Health Checkup for individuals age 20 and younger, including complete physical examination; immunizations; necessary lab tests; health education; hearing checkups; well-baby, well-child, Head Start, school, and sports physicals.
  • Laboratory and X-ray Tests
  • Outpatient Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services for Child, Adolescent, and Adults

In some cases, your pediatrician may refer your child to a pediatric specialist for further evaluation and treatment. Bluestem Health also refers to pediatric specialists.

Bluestem Health Pediatricians

Infants, adolescents, and children are the most insured population. Which means pediatricians are busy and can sometimes be hard to find. The American Academy of Pediatrics report that only 4% of pediatric patients are uninsured – 50% with public and 46% with private insurance. Additionally, 63% of pediatricians are in primary care with 47% in subspecialties. Bluestem Health offers two exceptional primary care pediatricians:

Dr. Peterson received her doctorate from Duke University and is a member of the American Academy of Pediatrics. She specializes in primary care for children in a family practice setting. She also volunteers her time helping out in the community whenever she can.

Dr. Qasimyar attended medical school at the University of Nebraska – Omaha and received her Medical Degree from Oklahoma Health Sciences Center in Oklahoma City. She is Board Certified in Pediatrics and is a member of the American Academy of Pediatrics. Dr. Qasimyar is passionate about being an advocate for children and a trusted resource for families.


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