Four Seasons Pediatrics

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Appointments at Four Seasons Pediatrics

At Four Seasons Pediatrics, it is our pleasure and our honor to care for your child.  Dealing with illness is difficult.  We wish to provide you with some information about how we can help you when you child is ill or there is a significant issue that we can help address.   The following are some Frequently Asked Questions about these type of appointments:

Four Seasons Pediatrics FAQ with regard to phone calls to the office:

Why must the triage nurse call me back when I want to schedule an appointment? 

 It has been often asked of our reception and nursing staff why it is necessary for a nurse to call a parent back when they simply want to schedule an appointment for their child.  There are several reasons for this, but the most important is so that your time in the office will best meet the need you have for your child that day.  The purpose of the call back is not to make you have to justify why you want to have your child seen, we will always see your child if that is your desire; we just want to schedule them for the appropriate amount of time to address your concern and with the provider who can best meet that time requirement that day.  Many times there are suggestions that you can be doing at home in place of an office visit which would eliminate your having to pay a copay only to receive the same instruction in the office.  We understand that sometimes an office visit while not medically necessary is the only thing that will reassure you that your child is doing well or does not need further treatment, we will be happy to schedule an appointment.  Our desire is to present you with all of your options with regards to your concerns so that you can make an informed choice in how best to treat your child.   We are always planning to best meet your needs.  While we try to predict how many openings we need based on the time of year, you may imagine that this may be unpredictable.  This creates a need to ensure there are an adequate number of appointments at unpredictable surges in illnesses, such as the flu.  It is the job of the triage nurse to match the medical need severity to the appointment availability. If watchful waiting is an appropriate response to your child’s symptoms we want to support you in doing that so long as you are comfortable with that plan. 

What if there is more than one issue I need to address?

Another reason a triage nurse calls you back is to determine if there are multiple issues to be addressed or one specific problem.  A visit for a child complaining of ear pain can be scheduled for significantly less time than a visit to evaluate headaches that have been occurring for several weeks.  It is the job of the triage nurse to clarify your concerns and symptoms prior to your visit with the purpose of providing enough time in the schedule for your concerns to be fully addressed by the provider at your visit.   This careful scheduling also allows for the providers in the office to see their patients in a timely manner.  We do not want our patients to be in the waiting room or waiting in a room while their provider is running behind because a complex concern was not given enough time in the schedule to be addressed.  Conversely, we do not want your concern to be inadequately addressed because it is more complex than can be addressed in the time scheduled. 

How soon can I expect a call back? 

With regards to receiving a phone call back from the triage nurse, it is the policy of Four Seasons Pediatrics that all phone calls will be returned within thirty minutes.  It is extremely rare that you will not receive a phone call back within this time frame and we would encourage you to call again if you have not heard back within thirty minutes.  In reviews of our charts to assess our success in this goal, most phone calls are returned within five minutes.  To this end, we would ask that when you do call the office you plan to be available to answer your phone when we return your call.  When you are unavailable to answer the return call it causes your phone call to be put back in the queue when you call back.   The most frequent cause of return call delays is when your phone number is blocked to private calls.   Please consider allowing blocked calls to come through your phone when you are calling our office. 

In summary, please know we are always willing to schedule an appointment for your child.  It is our goal to schedule all appointments for the appropriate amount of time to adequately address your concerns and symptoms, and in a way that allows our patients and providers to move through their day in a timely manner. 

We appreciate that out of all the healthcare providers in the area you have entrusted our office to guide you in meeting the health and wellness needs of your children.  We consider it a privilege that you have made this choice.  It is our commitment to you to be available to see your child as their primary care provider.  We would always prefer to schedule you to be seen at an appropriate time in our office than to have you seeking care in an urgent or emergent care setting.  Although not all Urgent Care visits can be prevented, we would encourage you to always call our office first, even after hours.  You will receive a phone call back to help you determine if you really must seek immediate care or if it would be appropriate to wait and be seen in our office.  When you do seek care elsewhere, please let us know so that these notes can be requested in order to update your child’s record. 

Please do not hesitate to let us know of any suggestions you may have to make your interaction with our office better, we are here to serve you.

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