When I was pregnant, I found a to-do list for expecting mamas (there are many out there). One item was "interview prospective pediatricians". I admit I was a little surprised at this idea. "Interview" a doctor? Why can't you just pick one close to where your apartment is, or the one your coworker takes her daughter to?
I now realize the importance of this step. Finding a doctor whose views are similar to your own is pretty important.
I chose the doctor that had led the group session as "our" doctor, since I liked him so well. However, he was not the doctor from the practice that was on call the weekend that Wee One was born. Instead, we got another amazing doctor from the practice that we later called "Dr. McDreamy" and had a bit of a stalker-esque relationship with because we loved him so much too.
Oh, I hated leaving that practice when we moved. We saw a total of 4 doctors from that practice in the 4 months she was a patient there, and we adored 3 of them. They were informed, patient, accommodating, and they took great care of my Wee One.
That was the worst thing about moving.
He's fine. But ... he's ... just fine. He did let me delay her one-year vaccines because she had a sinus infection at the time. He laughs at Wee One every time he examines her because she always tries to play with his stethoscope. He asked her to stick out her tongue once and she just looked at him. He said "she's so smart, it's easy to forget she's not quite mature enough for that yet" which made my heart swell up.
At an appointment we made to discuss food issues, he again pushed the cow's milk. Again, not specifically being discouraging, just not being encouraging of extended breastfeeding either.
But the thing the I would most prefer in a doctor's office, I have come to realize, is electronic medical records. I don't know why this is so important to me, and I feel like it shouldn't be. But it is. Dr. McDreamy's office had electronic medical records. Everything in their office was electronic. The doc would enter her weight on his little tiny laptop and immediately show us her growth curve. In color. (The visual learner in me LOVED THAT.) They could, at the touch of a button, print all her past height/weight/head circumference stats (complete with percentiles) so I could keep track. If you talked to the doc on call after hours, he had his little laptop with him, and could view her entire record and history right then. It was efficient and effective.
Our new doctor doesn't utilize EMR in his office. During our visit about feeding, he had to plot her height and weight himself on the little growth chart graph paper to see where she was on the curve.
I don't want to bounce around from practice to practice. I don't want to go from a doctor that is "ok" to a doctor that's worse. But I would like a doctor that is truly supportive of extended breastfeeding, a doctor that supports alternative vaccine schedules, a doctor that has EMR, and a doctor that doesn't think attachment parenting is wierd.
How does one go about finding that?
(She loves the baby in the mirror at the doctor's office. So if they have that, that would be good too!)