Well Child Visits
It’s that time of year again where people start thinking less about sick visits and more about well child checkups and annual sports physicals! Both Children’s Medical Center and the American Academy of Pediatrics recommend annual well visits for all children 2 through 21 years of age. There are several reasons for this recommendation:
• First, as the providers who know your child, we are best able to screen for any abnormalities or concerns that may arise. Plus, it’s always a joy to see them well and thriving!
• For sports-aged children, this visit is their sports physical. It is valid for one year, and is best done with a provider who knows them and their family history.
• At well visits, we are able to review growth and development, nutrition, exercise, social development, school issues, safety concerns, and parenting guidance appropriate for each age. Vaccines are also reviewed and administered if necessary and an updated vaccine record is given to you.
• We are also able to review and monitor any chronic health conditions (such as asthma, ADHD, obesity, etc.) to ensure appropriate care. Sometimes this does require additional time, appointments or referrals, and may be documented and billed separately from the preventative components of a well visit.
Finally, adolescent visits are particularly important because this is a time that kids are most vulnerable, yet are least likely to seek medical care. We try to establish a trusting relationship with your teenager so that it sets the stage for them to be responsible adults who will take their own health seriously. A normal developmental step in this process is allowing your teen to share their views of health in their own voice. Starting this summer, we will be incorporating two standard practices to give them a chance to express their own views: your teen will complete a health survey on their own, and we will talk to your teen independently for part of their visit – both will be completed with your teen on his/her own during the beginning portion of the well care visit. In order for this process to occur smoothly, we ask that adolescents arrive 10 minutes prior to their scheduled appointment time in order to facilitate the completion of the check-in process.
If you think your child(ren) may be past due or almost due for a well visit, please call us soon or look in the letters section of your MyChart account for the last General Health Appraisal form. Our well check-ups do fill up fast, especially in the summertime, so please schedule this very important visit as soon as possible. We look forward to seeing you! Remember you can schedule these visits through your MyChart account for all children over the age of 2 and all of your immunization and forms from your visit are accessible through MyChart all year long as long as your account is active before your visit. Please remember some plans do require 365 days between visits, call your insurance if you want to come in earlier to ensure your plan allows for that.
Extra Charges on Well Child Visits
Please be aware that problems, illnesses or abnormalities addressed during the course of a well child visit will be documented and charged separately from the preventative component(s) of that days’ visit. Those issues require additional evaluation, management and decision-making from your provider, and must be separately documented in accordance with American Medical Association guidelines. Such charges may be adjudicated by your insurance as falling outside of the preventative benefit, meaning that your insurance may add an additional charge such as copay, or may be applied to your deductible and/or co-insurance amount depending on your plan. As always, if you have questions or concerns please contact our Business Office.