Frequently Asked Questions
All office visits are by appointment only. When scheduling your appointment, please let us know the reason for the visit so that we can allow the appropriate amount of time for your child. We value your time and attempt to keep to our schedule, but occasionally hospital responsibilities, emergencies and phone calls could detain us. We will attempt to notify you of any delays. We ask that you arrive at the office 10 minutes prior to your appointment. Please inform us of changes in your address, health insurance and home or work telephone numbers.
We ask that you call our office to cancel an appointment if you are unable to keep it and if you will be running late. We appreciate your courtesy in this matter so that we may treat you and other patients in a timely manner. We will need to reschedule any well exams if you arrive more than 15 minutes late for your appointment. If you arrive late for a sick visit, we will try to accommodate you as time permits. If you need to ask for additional children to be seen, please do so prior to arriving at the office.
We do not pre-book sick appointments for Saturday. If you need a sick visit for Saturday please call that morning. We will not schedule Saturday appointments before Saturday. This is due to the large number of no shows that occur when a child feels better.
As children mature into adolescents, their needs change in many ways. The role of their pediatrician also changes. Beginning around age 12 or 13 we like to spend some of the well visit with the teen alone. This helps establish a rapport between teen and pediatrician. Ideally adolescents should be open and honest with their parents about their activities including possible drug/alcohol use and sexual activity. A visit with the pediatrician allows a caring professional to be involved with providing health and safety guidance. Pediatricians frequently have encounters with adolescents involving disclosure of sexual activity/drug-alcohol abuse that they wish to withhold from their parents for many reasons. It is the job of the pediatrician to provide appropriate health care including screening for sexually transmitted infections and pregnancy. These services do not require consent of the parent, but it is always desirable to have parents involved. One of our goals in treating your adolescent is to facilitate open communication with you and ourselves in order to promote good health.
Many children exhibit behavior or learning difficulties which suggest possible ADHD (Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder). Evaluation for this common disorder requires assessment of many pieces of information from a number of sources. Having this information collected before an office visit allows this evaluation to proceed efficiently. The “Vanderbilt Scales” are one standardized assessment that is used. You will find both the parent and teacher Vanderbilt Scale available to download under “Online Forms”. We would ask that all teachers and parents complete and send to the office. It is also important to be able to review report cards (several years if available), MAP testing, and any educational testing performed through the school. If testing has been performed by a psychologist, access to this also helps the evaluation process. (Please sign a release form for the psychologist, so they may send us this information).
Once a child has been diagnosed, it is very important to have continued follow up visits. These evaluations help to monitor the child’s progress and the effectiveness of the medication. It is also important to monitor for side effects. Follow up visits will range anywhere from 1 to 6 months.
Phone Calls During Office Hours
Routine questions, appointments, billing information, request for referrals and prescription renewals are all handled during regular office hours. Our phones are busiest between 8:30 am and 9:30 am. After 5:00 pm, we have limited staff available to handle these calls, so non-urgent matters may need to be deferred to the next regular office day. If you are calling for a non-urgent matter, please call between 9:30 am and 5:00 pm. Please understand that patient care and emergencies take priority over non-urgent phone calls, but we will return your phone call as soon as possible. Please call the office prior to taking your child to an urgent care facility or emergency room so that we may assess whether we can see the child in our office first. If you are calling for advice or have other medical questions, our nurse is available between 8:30 am and 5:00 pm Monday through Friday. Please be aware that she returns calls in priority order, but will return your call within the same day. Please make sure that you leave all phone numbers necessary to reach you throughout the day.
WE ARE NOW PROUD TO PROVIDE CHADIS: (Child Health & Development Interactive System)
An online system that allows you to log-in and complete Questionnaires at home before your visit, which helps:
• Share your priorities with the doctor before entering the exam room
• Evaluate your child’s health, behavior or development
• Determine if your child is progressing on schedule for their age
Your Physician Asks That You:
Go to www.CHADIS.com a WEEK before every Well child visit, Log-in and take the questionnaires listed there.
NEW USERS: USE THE “INVITATION CODE”: 6363495437
RETURNING USERS: USE YOUR CHADIS USERNAME AND PASSWORD
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After Hour Emergencies: Call 314-747-7069
After hour emergency calls from 9:30 pm until 8:00 am, are handled by our answering service at St. Louis Children’s Hospital. Calls placed prior and after these hours will be forwarded to one of our providers. Please make sure that we are able to return the call to you by disarming any Caller-ID feature that would not allow the call. We ask that you not call after hours for non-emergency problems including routine prescription refills. Please call the office during regular business hours for these.
Before many prescriptions can be filled, including antibiotics, steroids and narcotics, your child will need to be seen by one of our providers. Appropriate refills can be filled by contacting us during office hours with 24 hour notice.
Medication Refill Requests
Due to the large number of calls for prescription refills, we ask that you call your pharmacy first (including mail order) and not the office, to get your refill. You may be surprised to find that you do still have active refills remaining. The pharmacy will then forward the request to us for authorization. This is the smoothest, fastest and most convenient way for you to renew your prescription. Please make sure you have a 7 day supply left to ensure that you do not run out as it may take 24-36 hours to fulfill your request. We will not call in antibiotics without first examining your child, as this is not consistent with good medical care.
ADHD Medication Refill Requests
We request that you schedule your child’s ADHD appointment with your child’s pediatrician several months in advance to ensure they stay on schedule and do not run out of medication. We ask that you notify our office at least 24-48 hours in advance before the supply of medication runs out to arrange for a new prescription to be dispensed. ADHD medication requests after 3:00pm on Friday and on Saturday will be written the following Monday. These prescriptions cannot be called in to a pharmacy. All stimulant medications are sent electronically to the pharmacy and can only be done during office hours.
Medication Dosagesclick here to jump to top
Lab & Radiology Services
There are a number of laboratory tests ordered in conjunction with well child care, such as hemoglobin, hematocrit, lead screening and urinalysis. In addition, audiometry and vision screening are ordered at appropriate well visits or when clinically indicated. Most childhood illnesses can be diagnosed by a complete history and thorough physical examination, but occasionally laboratory tests are necessary. The laboratory testing for the well or sick patient may be performed in our office or ordered at a commercial laboratory, as dictated by the requirements of your health insurer. You will need to know if your health insurer covers those tests ordered as some policies do not.
The economy has caused many families finances to be stressed. If your family is having difficulty paying bills please contact us as soon as possible in order to make payment arrangements. We will make every attempt to work out a monthly payment plan. We do suggest that you make yourself familiar with your insurance plan’s benefits and exclusions. Some services may not be covered by your individual plan including well exams and immunizations. We will only be able to bill one parent for services not covered by insurance. Please make sure we have the correct name and address of the parent to receive the bill. When there is a dispute between parents as to which will be responsible, we will bill the parent that brought the child to our office. Our billing department is open from 8:00am to 5:00pm Monday through Friday if you have any questions. (636)717-9080.
From October until January, we will recommend the flu vaccine for many children. Beginning in October (if there is no manufacturer delay), we will administer flu vaccine by appointment only. The CDC (Center For Disease Control) recommends the flu vaccine for the following children:
Children aged 6 months and up
Children with certain chronic medical conditions (asthma)
Children who live with or care for those at high risk for complications from flu, including:
1. Health care workers
2. Household contact of persons at risk for complications from the flu
3. Household contacts and caregivers of children less than 5 years of age with particular emphasis on vaccinating contact of children more than 6 months of age
Parents often ask these questions:
Q- Why bother getting a flu vaccine? A- Many children end up in the hospital from the flu virus.
Q- Can the flu vaccine give your child the flu? A- No. Injected flu vaccine is not a live vaccine, so it cannot cause infection.
Q- Is the flu vaccine safe for children? A- It can cause soreness or fever. Serious side effects, such as allergic reactions are very rare.
You will want to contact your insurance plan, as many do not cover the cost of the Flu vaccine or may require you to pay a co-pay for it.
Children 18 Years of Age
Children Over The Age of 18 Years
As your adolescent child enters young adulthood, we would like to inform you of important office policies. As much as we have enjoyed providing care to them, the time has come for them to begin seeing an adult medicine physician.
The providers will continue to see your children until the summer after their high school graduation. If a patient is still in high school when they turn 19 years of age, he/she will not be seen anymore.
The providers will also not see your children, regardless of their age, if they are emancipated. This includes children that no longer live with their parent(s) or if your children have become parents themselves.
Please make sure your child makes arrangements prior to the above to transfer their medical records to an adult doctor. Your child’s medical record will be sent to the warehouse once they turn 19. If they request the record after this date, there will be a $23.00 charge to retrieve it.
We are NOT allowed to release records of 18 year olds to their parents or with the parent’s permission. The permission must be in writing from the patient. All records released to another physician will be done at no charge and mailed or faxed to the new physician. If the record is not to be released to another physician, there will be a charge of $23.94 plus .55 for each page, for the copying of the records and the record will not be mailed or faxed. Your child MUST come to the office with a picture ID and the amount due, to pick them up in person. Records are only copied weekly. You may download a copy of the release on our website www.fentonpediatrics.com.
If you have any questions, please give our office a call. We wish you the best of health in the future.click here to jump to top
We Offer the Following WELL-CHILD Visits:
First newborn visit: Please call to schedule during your hospital stay.
1 week well-child check up (if breast feeding)
2 week well-child check up (if bottle feeding)
1 month well-child check up
2 month well-child check up
4 month well-child check up
6 month well-child check up
9 month well-child check up
12 month well-child check up
15 month well-child check up
18 month well-child check up
24 month well-child check up
Well Child Checkups should be scheduled at least 2-3 months in advance if you are needing an evening or Saturday appointment.
You will want to contact your insurance plan before scheduling your 3 year or older well-child exam, as many do not cover them if the previous exam was less than a year ago.
You may also want to ask if a vision and hearing screening is covered by your plan. Both of these screening tools are recommended by the pediatricians as part of the complete well exam.
We use a number of screening instruments during well infant, child and adolescent visits. These include the MCHAT (an autism screening), lead exposure survey, teen screen and vision and hearing screening. These are important tools for detecting medical and behavioral problems requiring further assessment. We will continue to expand our screenings, as recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics, including the Ages and Stages and Pediatric Symptom checklist when available. Many of these screenings are covered by insurance plans. The exact coverage depends on your specific plan. If there are concerns about insurance coverage on these screenings, we would recommend you contact your insurance carrier before your visit.
Please make sure that you bring your current insurance card with you to each visit. Having the most current information of your plan is essential for submitting claims to your insurer. If your insurance card requires a PCP (Primary Care Physician), please make sure, prior to your visit that, we are listed as the PCP.
The co-pay assigned by your insurance company is required to be paid at the time of service. We accept checks, MasterCard, Visa, Discover, Debit cards and cash. If you are unable to pay your co-pay at the time of service you will be charged an additional $5.00 handling fee.click here to jump to top
New Mom/Prenatal Consultaions
Expectant parents are invited to schedule a prenatal consultation with one of our pediatricians. During the visit, you have the opportunity to meet the provider, staff and tour the office. We would like for you to fill out the Prentatal Interview form and bring it with you to your visit. These appointments are available Monday through Friday 9:00AM to 4:00PM. These visits would be expected to take about 15 minutes. If you are not sure which pediatrician you wish to see, you may schedule a visit with our nurse practitioner to become acquainted with the office and providers.
Health Insurance Plans
We participate in many Managed Care Health Plans. We suggest that you contact your health plan to verify our participation with them. If your insurance plan is not listed below, please call our office for updated information.
ANTHEM (BLUE CROSS/BLUE SHIELD)
BEECH STREET PPO
CIGNA (HMO) & (PPO)
COVENTRY (NOT CARELINK FROM COVENTRY)
GROUP HEALTH PLAN (CMR)
HEALTHLINK (HMO) & (PPO)
HOME STATE HEALTH
MERCY HEALTH PLAN
PRIVATE HEALTHCARE SYSTEM
SSM EXCLUSIVE CHOICE
UNITED HEALTHCARE (NOT UNITED HEALTHCARE COMMUNITY PLAN)
With the advancing medical technologies and complexity of care involved with hospitalized children, we have begun using in-house hospital specialists to direct in-hospital care. We feel that the hospitalist can follow children more frequently and closely, reviewing testing and consults directly rather than by phone. As the primary pediatrician we maintain close contact with the hospitalist and provide post-hospital follow up.
All of our physicians are on staff at the following hospitals. If you go to a hospital that is not on our list, please sign a release form so that we may have the records forwarded to us.
St. Louis Children’s Hospital
One Children’s Place
St. Louis, MO 63110
Missouri Baptist Medical Center
3015 N. Ballas
St. Louis, MO 63131
615 S. New Ballas
St. Louis, MO 63140
10010 Kennerly Rd.
St. Louis, MO 63128
Fenton, MO 63026
Effective July 2015, our physicians no longer see newborns in the hospital. Each hospital has a staff of pediatric physicians (or hospitalists), available to evaluate your newborn and manage his/her nursery care. After discharge, we will see your newborn typically within 2-3 days for his/her first well-baby visit. This visit should be scheduled prior to leaving the hospital. While we have all enjoyed our newborn hospital visits, this change has been the result of increasingly complex electronic medical record systems that are not readily accessible in our office. Utilizing the services of staff physicians, we have improved accessibility for office appointments and the ability to have newborns evaluated, if problems arise, in a more timely manner. We remain on staff at several area hospitals in a refer and consult capacity.
Residents from St. Louis Children’s Hospital
Our physician’s participate with the St. Louis Children’s Hospital’s Community Outreach Preceptor program. This program places physicians training in pediatrics with experienced pediatricians in their own offices to facilitate learning about normal children’s growth and development. Each pediatrician chooses a resident physician who will spend about one half of a day each week in the office for three years. During office visits you may have the opportunity to meet these residents. The resident will talk with you and examine your child, then discuss the findings with the pediatrician. Both will then return and perform further examination and then discussions as indicated. Seeing the resident may prolong your visit, but it will be an excellent teaching experience for the residents. We appreciate your patience and understanding as this helps young doctors learn to be good pediatricians.click here to jump to top