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Your Child’s Specialty Clinic Visit

Your Child’s Health Care Team

During your in-person or telemedicine appointment, various care providers may be involved in your child’s care. The list below will help you identify them, as well as their roles and responsibilities.

Patient Access Representative (PAR): Our PAR team will assist you with the registration and check-in process for your visit. They will confirm you and your child’s identity, verify insurance and demographic information, collect co-pays, and perform other registration tasks. They may also assist with the check-out process after your appointment and scheduling any follow-up care that is needed.

Medical Assistant (CMA): Medical assistants assist your child to an exam room, perform vital signs (such as checking weight/height, temperature, blood pressure), update information in our records about your child’s health history for the provider to review, assist the provider or nurse with procedures, administer certain medications or vaccines, and perform basic screening tests.

Registered Nurse (RN) & Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN): Nurses may gather information on your child’s illness and medical history, perform physical assessments, obtain vital signs, administer medications or other treatments, perform or assist with procedures and provides education on caring for your child at home.  The nurse works closely with the physician (MD), nurse practitioner (NP) or Physician Assistant (PA) and helps to coordinate the entire care team. In certain cases, you may only be scheduled to see the nurse.

Attending Physician (MD): Doctors who practice in their specialty and may supervise or lead a team of other doctors. Physicians at this level have finished a residency program and can practice independently. They supervise and teach the residents, interns, and medical students.

Fellow (MD): A fellow is a fully credentialed physician who has completed their residency and elects to complete further training in a specific subspecialty. 

Resident/Intern (MD): Doctors who are in a residency program. Residency is a time when a doctor gets extra training in a specialty area, such as pediatrics, before becoming an attending physician. You may have residents with different levels of training involved in your clinic visit.

Medical Student: Students learning to become a doctor. The medical students you meet will be in their third or fourth year of school.

Nurse Practitioner (NP): Registered nurses who have extra training and education that enables them to diagnose and treat patients. They can perform procedures, order treatments or testing and order medications under the supervision of an attending physician.

Physician Assistant (PA): Physician assistants are providers with graduate-level education who work under the supervision of an attending physician. They can diagnose and treat patients, prescribe medications, order treatments/testing and perform or assist with procedures.

Respiratory Therapist (RT or RCP): Providers who specialize in your child’s respiratory (breathing) needs by performing assessments, giving treatments, and providing education on breathing-related conditions.

Social Worker (SW): Professionals who offer assistance and support services for patients and families, including grief counseling, crisis intervention or referrals for community resources and behavioral health.

Occupational Therapist (OT): Providers who help children with activities of daily living. They assist with tasks such as feeding, fine motor skills, hand-eye coordination and the use of adaptive devices.

Physical Therapist (PT): Providers who help children with coordination and movement by using exercise and various mobilization techniques.

Registered Dietitian (RD): Trained professionals who specialize in food and nutrition. They advise families and children on making health lifestyle choices and how to maintain a balanced diet.

Interpreter Services: If you need an interpreter to better communicate with your child’s healthcare team, please ask for assistance. Rady Children’s offers onsite Spanish-language interpreters as well as telephone and video interpreting services (VRI) for more than 150 different languages. These services are available for both in-person and telemedicine visits. Onsite sign language interpreters may be arranged with advanced notice, including VRI for a telemedicine appointment. A TDD phone line (for the deaf) is available at 858-627-3002.