Frequently Asked Questions About Child Health

How do I choose my paediatrician?

Gynaecologists often work with specific paediatricians, who will then attend the birth of your baby. If you have a different paediatrician in mind (for instance a sibling that is already seeing one of the paediatricians, or a referral from friends), you are welcome to communicate this with your gynaecologist. If your paediatrician of choice is not available, one of the other two will attend your baby’s birth (For instance during emergencies). All three of us work together to deliver a continuous service, which means that, in emergencies, it may well be a different paediatrician to the one you normally see. We work on a state of the art, electronic record keeping system, which ensures availability of previous records to whomever is on duty.

How do I pay?

Consultations in the rooms are payable after every consultation and an invoice issued to enable you to claim back from the medical aid. For your convenience, available methods of payment are cash, credit/debit card as well as EFT. Telephonic /electronic consultations, prescriptions, chronic applications and special motivations will be charged for according to medical aid rate. Hospital services are claimed for directly from the medical aid. This practice charges Discovery Classic rates. Private patients and patients with international medical aids will be required to settle the account upon discharge. Any amount not covered by your medical aid will be payable by you on receipt of an invoice.

When do I routinely see my paediatrician?

Your paediatrician will see your baby at birth and daily when your baby is still in hospital. Routine visits are tailored according to the specific needs of your baby. This will normally be at 6-8 weeks, 4-6 months, 1 year, 18 months, 2 years, 3 years and 5 years. These visits may differ according to your baby’s gestation, risk factors or underlying illnesses. Paediatricians see children up to the age of 12 years.

What do I do in an emergency?

For emergencies outside office hours, you can phone Radiotel at 012-3336000 on week days from 17:00-19:00 and week end public holidays from 7:00-11:00. This emergency service is only for existing patients of the practice. If you are not an existing patient, you will need to be referred by a general practitioner or a casualty department. A visit to casualties is indicated in the event of emergencies like drowning, choking, falls, lacerations, poisoning, suspected fractures, convulsions, difficulty in breathing (from a tight chest, not because of a blocked nose), severe and persistent diarrhoea and/or vomiting and an inability to wake your child. Non-emergencies are best left for the next available appointment with your paediatrician – even if it means waiting a day or two.

What if my child is admitted to hospital?

Having your child admitted to hospital is very distressing to the child and the parents. For this reason, we try to make your child’s stay with us as pleasant as possible. The menus for the paediatric wards in the Netcare group were recently changed by celebrity chef and father of two, Rueben Riffel. The ‘Rusty the Rhino’ programme aims to make the food even more appetizing for all kids, especially sick ones. You are welcome to bring your preferred bottles. There is a variety of children’s DVD’s available to keep the little ones busy. There are 6 private rooms available (1 is for gastroenteritis), 5 of which have en suite bathrooms. In each of these private rooms, there is a bed available for the parent and a bed/cot  for your child. These rooms are prioritized for breastfeeding moms, and are otherwise occupied on a ‘first come, first serve’ basis. In the rest of the ward, there are 4 more gastroenteritis isolation rooms available. There are also 3 bigger rooms, each with 5 beds. If your child should be admitted to one of these and you choose to stay overnight, a reclining chair will be provided for you to get some rest. There are no visiting hours for parents, but other visitors are restricted to 11am-12pm, 3-4pm and 7-8pm. Please note that children below the age of 12 are not allowed in the ward as visitors, and siblings are not allowed to visit or stay over. This is for the protection of both the patients and the visitors. Children admitted to the ward often have infective diseases and can infect visiting children. On the other hand, visiting children could bring new infections into the ward.