CHICAGO (CBS) – When you have children, trips to the doctor can be painful; either sitting with a sick one in the lobby, or with a well one around other sick children.
These days, there’s a growing trend that allows the option for parents to stay home and still get the care their child needs. CBS 2’s Mary Kay Kleist reports.
Like most children, Felipe Amzallag has seen the pediatrician multiple times in his first year of life.
His father, Tristan Amzallag, said, “My pediatrician has seen Felipe for vaccinations, has seen him for emergency respiratory problems, mild colds.”
But his pediatrician comes to them. That’s right: his doc makes house calls.
“The drawbacks of having to go to an office to see a pediatrician include the concern that other children are sick around my child, the concern that the pediatrician isn’t paying 100 percent attention to my child,” said Tristan.
Dr. Ed Kulich is a pediatrician. He believes seeing a child in the home setting gives him a better understanding of conditions that might contribute to an illness or a behavior issue.
“I can pick up developmental signs that might not be seen in an apprehensive child,” said Dr. Kulich. “I also can give parents sleep training which is very often overlooked because of the time constraints of a visit.”
Pediatricians who make house calls are also referred to as “concierge pediatricians.” It’s a growing trend, with physicians popping up across the country, providing services outside the office.
“I wanted to devote lots of time to each individual patient,” Dr. Kulich said. “Instead of seeing 30, 40 a day, I could see three to four.”
Dr. Kulich says children seem much more relaxed in the home setting, too.
“They certainly don’t have that kind of white coat phobia,” he said.
Parents may pay a higher price for the service, and they may have to pay the fees up front, then be reimbursed by their insurance company.
Dr. Kulich points out the advantage, though, of being able to get care at home, around the clock.
“I do my best to be available to my patients 24 hours a day, seven days a week,” he said.
If you are interested in finding a house call pediatrician, you’ll want to start your search on the Internet. Be sure to select a doctor who is board-certified by the American Academy of Pediatrics, and on staff at your local hospital.