What does a Pediatrician do?
Pediatricians are physicians who specialize in the care and treatment of infants, children, adolescents and young adults, from birth to age 21. They are expert in all areas of a child’s physical and emotional growth and development.
What might a Pediatrician do in a workday?
- teach parents about the health and wellness needs of their children, including regular examinations, immunizations, nutrition and physical, mental and emotional development.
- track each child’s growth and development and take action if problems arise.
- treat common childhood illnesses and injuries, such as ear infections and minor lacerations.
- examine and diagnose patients, sometimes using medical equipment, instruments and tests.
- prescribe and administer drugs and treatments.
- provide ongoing treatment and monitoring for those with chronic illnesses such as diabetes, kidney disease or cardiac conditions.
- immunize children to protect them from preventable, communicable diseases, such as chicken pox, polio, measles and hepatitis.
- care for children with complex medical problems, alone or in consultation with pediatric medical subspecialists or surgical specialists.
Developing a Career as a Pediatrician
Most pediatricians work in private offices, hospitals and clinics. They may work alone or with other physicians and are usually aided by nurses, technicians and clerks. They also are involved in teaching and research in academic centers, as well as in the guidance of community health care in national, state and local governments and agencies and in advocacy for children and families.
How much salary do Pediatricians make?
Average Salary Range
How do I become a Pediatrician?
Students interested in becoming a pediatrician should take the most challenging high school courses available in science, math and English, including advanced placement courses.
To enter medical school, students must have received a bachelor’s degree with a high grade point average in a premedical program or other related major. They must pass a national examination (MCAT) and undergo extensive interviews.
Upon completion of medical school, physicians interested in pediatrics enter postgraduate education (internship and residency) during which they receive at least three years of specialized education and practice in the field of pediatrics. Those who wish to further specialize may undertake up to three more years of education in fields such as pediatric emergency medicine.
Where else can I learn about becoming a Pediatrician?
Virginia Chapter of American Academy of Pediatrics
2201 W. Broad Street
Richmond, VA 23220
American Academy of Pediatrics
141 Northwest Point Boulevard
Elk Grove Village, IL 60007
Medical Society of Virginia
2924 Emerywood Parkway
Richmond, VA 23294-3746
State License Requirements for Pediatricians
A license is required to practice as a Pediatrician in the state of Virginia. For more information on licensure, applications and forms, visit www.dhp.virginia.gov/medicine.
Virginia Board of Medicine
9960 Mayland Drive
Henrico, VA 23233
Phone: (804) 367-4600