IMPORTANT FORMS AND PAPERWORK
To confirm and proceed with your booking, please ensure
A PATIENT INFORMATION FORM has Been completed within 48 hours of making your booking (or at least several days prior): Patient Information form online
or downloaded and filled out a copy to send or bring in).
Organise to have the following sent to us as soon as possible and at least several days prior:
your current MEDICAL REFERRAL (or at least ensure you bring it to the appointment).
any relevant REPORTS or requested documents such as QUESTIONNAIRES .
Bring the following to the appointment
Your blue book/child health record, as well as any relevant reports not previously sent (including speech, psychology & OT), x-rays and forms are ready to bring.
Other requirements related to your booking:
Please respond promptly to phone calls or SMS messages from the practice. We will send you an SMS appointment reminder usually 1-2 days prior to your appointment as we know you are busy and such things can slip your mind. We ask that you let us know that you have received this sms. We may also need to phone you or remind you about referrals or other relevant matters so we ask that you take these calls or otherwise respond as requested to any message.
HOW MUCH TIME WILL MY APPOINTMENT TAKE?
New patients should expect their first appointment to be around an hour in length. Most review appointments and appointments for 6 to 8 week checks are booked for 30 minutes. Special appointments for Autism Assessment may be between 30 and 90 minutes. Staff will advise you whenever your appointment is scheduled to be more than half an hour.
Will my appointment be on time? Our practitioners work hard and are skilled in keeping to their booked schedules. However, occasionally they must take extra and unplanned time in an appointment because there is a particular need. Some of our paediatricians may be called for an urgent attendance to a seriously unwell baby leading to some delays. Staff and clinicians will do their best to advise of these delays. When a doctor is running very behind, staff will discuss the situation with affected families. Often an extra book, a coffee or a walk around the adjacent gardens will help with the unexpected wait and a relative or friend might be able to collect a sibling from school. It might become necessary to reschedule the appointment. Whilst significant delays occur very infrequently, it is best to plan for some delay. Let staff know of any fixed constraints on your time.
WHO SHOULD COME?
Your child should always come to the appointment. Very occasionally a parent may attend an appointment alone when agreed by your doctor, where the child is well known to your doctor and because of their condition. Generally, it is important that your clinician see and interact with your child as well as examine them. Your doctor will generally want to understand your child’s experience or feelings.
Plan to attend with at least one parent, preferably a parent who can provide a lot of detail about the child and their history. We welcome grandparents, relatives or friends as extra support at the appointment. Whilst they won't be able to offer the detailed history that mum or dad can offer, they can greatly assist in making the patient and siblings comfortable and happy during the appointment . This assistance can often be partly given in the waiting room allowing parents some time to speak without distraction with the doctor or other clinician.
Will I be able to speak with the doctor without my child being present? Advise practice staff or your doctor if you feel it is important to limit your child’s exposure to some of the discussion you will have with doctor. Where possible, your child may be able to spend some time in the waiting room during the appointment. Staff will ensure your child feels welcome and keep an eye on the younger ones..
Rebates, referrals and Medicare. Medicare rules allow our advised or normal rebates only when the child is physically present. If a parent is attending without the child, they should have their own GP referral to enable normal rebates. They may attend without a referral but rebates will be less.
THINGS LEFT BEHIND
There is always a lot to manage when attending appointments with children. Sometimes families leave things behind, such as toys, or items of clothing. We try to run a very efficient practice and space for storage can get tight. Unfortunately we cannot hold onto items left behind indefinitely. Our staff will try and work out which family has left the item and call or send an SMS message. If you have left something behind, please either arrange to collect it within a few days or advise us that you do not wish to do so. If an item is not collected after a week or so, we must regretfully dispose of the item or give it to charity.
In our experience, very few left behind items are ever inquired about. Where we do locate the owner, it is, in our experience, unlikely that the item is ever collected.
CAN I BRING SNACKS AND OTHER FOODS?
Please avoid letting your children have food in the waiting room and consulting rooms
There is a cafe in Burnside Hospital where you can go to eat, and even grab a coffee or tea for yourself! If your child does need to eat a meal in the rooms, please ensure you bring foods that are not greasy or sticky, have them sit down using one of our little picnic mats (ask staff) and ensure hands are washed before play.
Foods not permitted at any time are: peanuts, tree nuts or nut pastes.
We work hard to provide a tidy and clean practice and many families have indicated that they appreciate this. It can be difficult to conduct adequate cleaning during consulting hours. For any children with allergic problems, food residues can be a very serious health concern. Common allergies include egg, dairy, nuts and shellfish and these can be found in many ordinary foods.
Food residues and spilled drinks create enhanced pathogen (viruses and bacteria) breeding opportunities and pathogen transmission risk.
We hope families can appreciate the very significant extra cleaning costs resulting from children having food in the rooms.
RELAX AND PLAY
Allowing children to play, relax and feel welcome is very important in building a positive relationship with clinicians and staff. Happy occupied children allow parents the space to talk with their doctors or other providers. Children and young people are most welcome to explore our carefully selected range of toys, puzzles, books, even the bell at the front desk!
Older children will find design toys, art activities, puzzles and books to occupy their time or might take the opportunity to sit quietly or even have a rest on the couch.
Children, younger and older, can be very creative and we often try to photograph their play or drawings. Some of these may be posted to our Facebook page from time to time.
Our toys, puzzles and books are cleaned regularly, Our plastic toys are washed each day. Where children have played with toys in such a way as to increase risks of pathogen transfer they are removed and washed.
We love to see children returning happily for review visits and we have some tricks up our sleeves to help children leave our rooms happily too.
Play, reading and relaxation are important for young people and can be very helpful in indicating how a child is developing or feeling.