Please take a moment to read our most commonly asked questions. We're always available to answer your questions and encourage you to contact our office if you have a question that is not answered below.
Q: What is a Pediatrician?
A: A pediatrician is a medical doctor who specializes in the care of children. Pediatricians have undergone special training in the health and illnesses of infants, teens and young adults. Most pediatricians, including all of our doctors, are certified by the American Board of Pediatrics after completing specified training and passing a comprehensive written examination. Many pediatricians participate also in ongoing Maintenance of Certification activities to continually improve their knowledge and skills.
Pediatricians provide preventive health care for children in good health and medical care for children who are acutely or chronically ill. They also provide parents with support and advice on issues such as growth and development, safety, prevention of illness, nutrition, and emotional wellness to foster a lifetime of good health.
Q: Can I meet my pediatrician before my baby is born?
A: Yes, in fact we strongly encourage parents-to-be to visit our office for a prenatal appointment. This is a great way to get acquainted with our office and our doctors. During this visit, we will answer any questions that you have about our practice or your new child. Visit our expectant parent's page for more information.
Q: How often should my child see the pediatrician?
A: Your child should not only see the pediatrician for illnesses. It is also important to schedule well-child exams regularly, beginning in infancy. Also called well-care visits or check-ups, these routine examinations provide the best opportunity for the doctor to observe the progress of your child's physical and mental growth and development, to counsel and teach parents, to detect problems through the physical examination and screening tests, to provide immunizations, and to get to know one another. Well-care visits are strongly recommended as part of preventive pediatric care.
Well-child visits are also a good time for parents to raise questions and concerns about a child's development, behavior, nutrition, safety and overall well-being.
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends this schedule for routine well-care visits:
- 3 to 5 days
- 1 month (We usually see newborns at 1-2 weeks.)
- 2 months
- 4 months
- 6 months
- 9 months
- 12 months
- 15 months
- 18 months
- 24 months
- 30 months
- 3 years
- 4 years
- And once every year thereafter for an annual health supervision visit that includes a physical exam as well as a developmental, behavioral, and learning assessment. (Please be aware that some insurance plans will cover well checks only once every 12 months while others will allow one each calendar year.)
Q: What is the best way to schedule an appointment with your office?
A: You can schedule an appointment by calling our office during regular business hours at 309-662-0504.
Q: How do I reach the on-call pediatrician for emergencies when the office is closed?
A: Parents who need to contact us about urgent medical concerns outside of office hours should call the office phone number, 314-747-8801. This will connect the caller to pediatric nurses at St. Louis Children's Hospital. They are trained to answer most common questions. They will contact our doctor on call for more complex matters. We ask respectfully that routine matters, including medication refills, be handled during office hours.
Q: Is your office accepting new patients?
A: Yes! All of our physicians are taking new patients. Most are accepting children of all ages; some have limited their intake of new patients. Dr. Ulbrich is taking new allergy and asthma patients. Contact our office at 309-662-0504 for additional information or to request an appointment.
Q: Why does my child need to receive vaccinations?
A: Immunizations are a series of shots given to children at different ages to help ward off serious, and potentially fatal, childhood diseases. Making sure your child receives immunizations when scheduled is the best way to help protect your child from potentially fatal diseases. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, vaccinations have reduced the number of infections from vaccine-preventable diseases by more than 90%. (A recent study found that more lives were saved by vaccines in the 20th century than were lost in all wars during the same period.) If you're apprehensive about vaccinations, please do not hesitate to contact our office.