About Pediatric Primary Care
Primary care is the foundation of good health, and we want to see your child grow up strong and healthy—just like you do. Visits to your pediatrician are vital to the health and wellbeing of your child. Cedars-Sinai offers a comprehensive network of care and accepts most major insurance plans.
Choosing a Doctor
When choosing a primary care physician for your child, you may encounter both pediatricians and family medicine physicians. Both provide primary care services for children. However, pediatricians treat only children, while family practice physicians treat both adults and children.
Another factor that may affect your choice of a primary care physician is their connection with a specialist network. With a Cedars-Sinai pediatric primary care physician, you'll have access to a network of professionals who provide the best specialized care in Southern California.
Your First Visit
These simple steps will help you prepare for a successful first visit with your child's doctor.
Complete Intake Forms
You should arrive at least 30 minutes before your child's first appointment to fill out new patient intake forms. Some offices may email them to you before the appointment so you can complete them in advance. Be sure to have your child's insurance information with you, and bring any medications your child is taking.
Bring Medical Records
If you're switching to a new pediatrician, bring a copy of your child's records, including immunization records, with you, or ask your previous doctor to forward a copy to the new doctor. This gives your new pediatrician a more complete picture of your child's health history and helps ensure your child will receive the appropriate treatment.
Questions? Please Ask
You are your child's first and best healthcare advocate. Don't hesitate to ask any questions or discuss any concerns you have with the pediatrician, nurses, physician assistants and support staff. When you're fully informed and confident about your child's treatment, you'll both receive something even more valuable—peace of mind.
When to Visit Your Pediatrician
We provide a wide range of care to our young patients.
Based on your child's needs, your pediatrician will recommend a schedule for wellness exams. Generally, we recommend wellness exams:
- At 1, 2, 4 and 6 months old
- Then, every three months until your child is 18 months old
- Then, once a year until age 21
Conditions We Treat
There may be times when you have concerns in between wellness exams. Check this list of common conditions treated in pediatric primary care, then call your pediatrician with any questions.
Sometimes the need won't wait, even if it's not life-threatening. (If it is life-threatening, call 911 immediately.) For those circumstances, there's urgent care, with same-day availability. If you're not sure whether to choose primary, urgent or emergency care, use this page as a guide.
Topics for Discussion
There's no one-size-fits-all answer, but there are common themes you might discuss with your pediatrician. Think of these as topics—many of them suggested by the American Academy of Pediatrics—to start conversations about how your child is developing.
Discussions about school will vary depending on your child's age. For example, for a younger child, you might talk with your pediatrician about school readiness; for an older child, you might talk about homework loads and stress. Regardless of your child's age, you can also consult with your pediatrician about after-school care and special education needs.
Your child's physical health is always part of the discussion. Your child's mental health can be, too. In addition to talking about how your child's body is developing, social skills, friends, bullying, family support, mood swings and puberty changes are all worth addressing.
As your child gets older, you won't be able to monitor everything they eat. At the same time, they should be getting at least 60 minutes of physical activity each day, and eight to 12 hours of sleep each night. Talk to your pediatrician about how to reinforce these healthy habits.
Dental hygiene, vision care, screen usage, and safety considerations for everything from booster seats to sunscreen, sports safety and sexual abuse prevention—your pediatrician can discuss these and many other topics that contribute to the health and wellbeing of your child.
Meet Our Team
See our list of pediatric primary care physicians, with notes for those who are accepting new patients.