You may remember your pediatrician as a friendly or kindly man or woman, who made jokes, occasionally wore funny hats, and also gave you shots. A pediatrician is a doctor who specializes in the physical and mental health of children from birth to the end of their teen years. A pediatrician provides a wide range of health services, from preventative care to the diagnosis and treatment of illnesses, conditions, and disease.
Pediatrics is the medical discipline that specializes in this care. A pediatrician also is trained to monitor the development of a child and follow their changing needs at each stage of their development.
Any general practitioner can treat a child, but only a board-certified pediatrician can specialize in the unique full-spectrum care of your child. But what does it mean to be board-certified and how does a pediatrician earn this title?
How does a doctor become a pediatrician?
A pediatrician is a doctor of medicine who has attended four years of undergraduate pre-med studies and an additional four years of medical school. This training then is followed by a 3-year hospital residency undergoing intensive medical training concentrating in all areas of medical care for children and teenagers.
Different types of pediatricians
Pediatricians include the office-based primary care pediatrician who usually sees and follows the development of your child, as well as more specialized pediatricians (called sub-specialty pediatricians) with additional experience and training in children’s surgery, children’s orthopedics and other fields such as child cardiology and intensive care. Other subspecialist pediatricians include neonatologists, the pediatricians who care for premature or sick newborns.
What is a Board-certified pediatrician?
The process of becoming an American Board of Pediatrics (ABP)-certified is more rigorous and demanding than the standard state licensing requirements for a doctor. It is also voluntary and demonstrates a level of skill and expertise that provides evidence of the pediatrician’s abilities and expertise.
What is the process to become board-certified?
After completion of their pediatric training, the training director contacts the American Board of Pediatrics. To earn certification, the doctor must demonstrate solid medical knowledge, optimal patient care, excellent communication skills, and a keen understanding of the workings of the healthcare systems and the collaboration among different specialties. Following this process, the ABP makes the determination if the pediatrician is eligible to become a candidate for board certification.
Once the pediatrician is confirmed to be a suitable candidate for certification, he or she sits for a long and demanding examination to determine whether the pediatrician meets the standards of excellence demanded by the American Board of Pediatrics.
Successful passing the exam merits the pediatrician to be awarded the coveted title, “Diplomate of the American Board of Pediatrics.” In other words – “board-certified.” But it doesn’t stop there. To maintain their certification, pediatricians must pursue training and professional education to keep abreast of new and advanced techniques and tools to enhance their knowledge in the field of pediatrics. They pass this knowledge and expertise on to you and your child in the form of professional excellence.
Tots ‘N’ Teens Pediatric Urgent Care is San Antonio’s go-to center to help parents sidestep the overcrowded ER when situations permit. In addition to being more cost-effective, they will save you precious time so, you and your little one can get back to life. Plus, Tots ‘N’ Teens employs board-certified pediatricians who are highly specialized to care for your child’s unique health needs. Check-in online, or call 210-267-5411 for more information.