The telephone can be a great help to both you and the pediatrician. Most initial contacts concerning a sick child will occur on the telephone. Counseling for simple problems such as feeding and sleeping behavior can effectively be handled on the telephone during office hours. Most importantly it is a useful way of getting in touch with the pediatrician in the event of an emergency.

Because of its usefulness and familiarity, parents and physicians may come to depend on the telephone more than they should. Accurate diagnosis of a child’s illness cannot be performed on the telephone. For example, even an accurate description of most skin rash is of little value in trying to determine the cause. A parent’s report of the severity of symptoms is often colored by the fears and anxieties natural in a concerned parent making an accurate assessment of an illness difficult, if not impossible, on the telephone.

Consider the telephone as a way of getting in touch with us. Do not attempt to use it as a way of diagnosing and treating illness. A child ill enough to require medication is usually ill enough to warrant an examination. For this reason, our practitioners and physicians will not call in a new antibiotic prescription for illness. This does not mean that every time you call an office visit will be necessary. Your accurate report of symptoms is the single most important factor in helping to decide what needs to be done. Communication should be as specific as possible. Such descriptions as “terribly sick” or “burning up” are of little value in determining how ill your child is. It is more helpful to know how many times a child has vomited in an hour, or describing them as listless.

When you call during office hours you will usually speak to one of our staff members or a Nurse Practitioner. All of our staff is trained to handle a parent’s questions. Trust the person you speak with, we do! Many times the person with whom you are speaking will address your question with the pediatrician and will then call you back. Frequently, you will be called back by a Nurse Practitioner. Depending on the nature of your concern and your personal request to the receptionist, the pediatrician will call you back personally. If there is any question concerning the severity of your child’s illness or possibility of complications you will be asked to bring your child in for evaluation. If you feel your child should be seen, state that when you call the office. This will eliminate unnecessary questions.

Finally, we ask you be patient and remember that many parents have questions and you may be asked to hold when calling, but you will always get through and your call will be returned as quickly as possible.

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East Valley Children's Center 3200 S. George Drive, Tempe AZ 85282 ( map )
480.839.9097 (Fax) 480.839.1762 / Terms of Use / Refund/Return/Cancellation Policy

Office Hours: By Appointment Only. M-F 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Evenings & Saturdays on urgent basis only.