Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrician Consultations
A consultation with a Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrician can be daunting for a parent. The thought of being informed that one’s child has a developmental delay may be one of the most disheartening moments encountered in parenthood. However, knowing the details of the developmental delay can be empowering in order to be able to find an effective early intervention program and bring positive outcomes for the child.
A developmental-behavioral pediatrician (also known as a developmental pediatrician), focuses on child development and child behavior issues and how these affect learning. An initial consultation with a developmental pediatrician can take about an hour to ninety minutes and usually requires scheduling an appointment ahead of time. Parents need to be aware that setting an appointment with a developmental-behavioral professional can require a wait time of about 13 weeks (AAP, 2006).
Types of Consultation:
As initial consultation commences follow-up visits will then be required. This initial visit entails an interview with the parents to obtain a comprehensive history of the child such as birth history, nutrition, sleep habits, current social interaction, family history, the child’s interests, any previous traumatic events, and previous medical or surgical interventions. These would guide the pediatrician to come up with therapeutic options. The duration of this visit may take anywhere from an hour to ninety minutes.
The next visit, also known as the Child Evaluation Visit, normally takes about an hour and is considered to be the diagnostic evaluation visit. This may take place in the pediatrician’s clinic but can also take place in the child’s daycare or school to see how the child behaves in his natural environment.
During the Feedback visit, discusses the evaluation results as well as the interventions or treatments recommended by the developmental pediatrician. This normally takes up to an hour.
A treatment consultation is recommended for children who have already been previously evaluated and diagnosed, and also for children below five years of age. These younger children may be seen on a treatment consultation even without a previous evaluation. Usually, in treatment consultations, the children join their parents on the first visit.
Developmental pediatricians usually charge around $250-$350 for a sixty to the ninety-minute initial consultation. Child evaluation visits may range from around $250 to $300 for a sixty-minute session.
During a consultation with a developmental-behavioral pediatrician, or any medical professional, parents should not hesitate in raising issues that may be bothering them.
Open communication with a child’s pediatrician is key to building a strong patient-doctor relationship wherein trust and respect prevail. The quality of the partnership between the parents and professionals is essential in ensuring the success of intervention and treatment for the child’s diagnosed condition.
American Academy of Pediatrics. Aap.org. America’s Children Need Access to Pediatric Subspecialists. Retrieved July 15, 2011, from http://www.aap.org/workforce/Sec5203FactSheet.pdf
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