Not everyone has been to a radiologist or a podiatrist. Many people may not even know what an endocrinologist does. But almost everyone has visited the child doctor. Pediatrician visits begin when one is only a baby and usually continue until the late teens. But while you’ve probably been to see one many times for either yourself or your child, you may not know that much about these important members of the health care community.
In the simplest terms, they are a child’s physician. They provide both health maintenance for children as well as providing medical care when the child is sick. The best physicians offer a complete round of services, making sure the patients are well in both the physical sense, the mental sense, and the emotional sense. They also must maintain a clear and open line of dialogue with the parents. Many physicians also try to get a window into the home life of their patients by asking questions and providing advice on potentially dangerous subjects such as gun ownership, pool safety, and more.
In rounding out their role as a child doctor, pediatrician care extends to babies, children who are older, teenagers, and even s small percentage of young adults up to the age of 21. Some of their primary focuses include the control of infectious disease, reducing mortality in infants and children, promoting healthy lifestyles. They are also charged with treating infections and viruses, treating injuries, diagnosing genetic defects, searching for malignancies, and diagnosing and treating organic diseases.
To prepare young students for their role as a child doctor, pediatrician education is extensive. They must attend and graduate from medical school just as anyone else attaining their M.D. Once this is finished, they must complete an additional three years of education in a pediatric residency program. Following this, they will be eligible to apply for board certification from the American Board of Pediatrics. In order to attain this certification, they must take and pass a written exam. This must be done every seven years in order to re-certify.
While many graduates choose to go into primary care as a child doctor, pediatrician work can extend beyond that point. Many choose to go on into specialties within the pediatric field. These specialties can include cardiology, critical care, endocrinology, emergency medicine, and many more. They may then choose to work out of a hospital as a member of the staff or set up their own private practice.