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AP-friendly ped. in Chapel Hill/Carrboro?

889 Views 22 Replies 14 Participants Last post by  lawgrrl
We're moving (back) to Chapel Hill next month, and we'll need to find a good ped. pretty quickly for Aidan's 1-year check-up. Any recommendations?
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We love Dr. Vines at Avalon. Here's their website-
We saw dr Sartor when we lived there and liked him well enough--he made a house visit on a saturday for us when ds was 5 months old!
Are either of those practices okay with not vaxing?


We love Chapel Hill Children's Clinic -

We generally see Pat Muir or Dr. Morris. And yes, they are okay with no vaccinations.
Dr. Vines didn't give us any trouble at all about not vaxing. We had our exemption form filled out and ready for him to file on the first visit. He just took it and moved on. He barely raised an eyebrow, though he did ask why we chose not to vaccinate. He even agreed that some of the things in the vaccines were less than desirable- which is as much as one can expect from a doc, I think!
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We're also seeing Dr. Morris at Chapel Hill Children's Clinic, and we like her right well so far. She is open to discussion about vaxes - we are comfortable talking with her in an adult and reasonable fashion about our decisions, although her stance is that she recommends them and believes they are safe. She has been great with our baby so far - my instinct is that she is sane and trustworthy-
Thanks for all the responses so far. To be more specific, though, are there any peds who are very supported of BF (especially EBF and delaying solids)? We're having a little trouble with our current "pro-BF" ped (who was totally shocked that we didn't have Aidan on a 3-meal-a-day schedule at 6mos
: ). We're just now starting solids at 10mos, and he still only gets about a tbsp. a day other than breastmilk, if any. We don't want to catch any flack about that when we go in for our 12mo check-up.
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I will second Dr. Vines at Avalon. We used to see Dr. Edds there (she is no longer there) and she was very AP and absolutely wonderful in every way. We also saw Dr. Vines a couple times and found him to be very gentle and kind.
Does anyone know if the peds recommended accept Medicaid? I have been blessed to be approved for Medicaid for pregnant women, which means my baby will be covered for his first year of life.

Dr. Minozzi at CH Peds is also wonderful, slow to prescribe abx (if ever), and VERY cool about not vaxing.

Sartor, however, at Carrboro peds is a VAX NAZI. He fired my family bc he couldn't "persuade us to his way of thinking." This was after his scare tactics, insults, and secretive double-billing had sent us packing anyway, but it was shocking to get a Dear John letter from God. I mean, a doctor. (Keri Lawrence, also at his practice, was more relaxed, however, and very smart and calm.)
According to my CNM at Women's Birth and Wellness in CH, there is a new nurse practioner/ped at Southern Village in CH who is supposed to be great

They are called Village Pediatrics, and I am going to a prenatal consultation Saturday...I will post more details then. The doctor there is a member of a Unitarian Universalist church, which I take as a good sign!
We really like Dr. Rebecca Tobin at Comprehensive Family Medicine over on/near Legion Rd. Her partner is great too. Dr. Bankaitis, I think. Intelligent, kind, takes her time. We selectively vax and haven't had any trouble, but I'd ask on the phone before I went.
We LOVE Dr Schreiner at Highgate Peds--near Southpoint mall, but part of UNC health. She's super pro-bf and is ok with delayed vax...She really takes time at each visit and is so respectful of the little ones. Highly recommended (we drive 1/2 an hour to get there and it's so worth it.)
FYI (and sorry to be a wet blanket), but Ginny Shriner at Highgate is widely known for putting BF babies on Ensure (liquid supplement drink) at a year bc they are low on "the charts". We know of several people who have been told their nursing toddler was "failure to thrive" and encouraged to wean. So she may support tiny infants being BF, but that support wanes dangerously with time. Around here we refer to her as our "local alarmist" and go to her when we're concerned about a REAL problem, cause she's good with those. I'd say just don't even ask her about BF or feeding or growth or weight gain.
Huh--that's really interesting and a tad disturbing. I'm surprised, actually! But I'll stay alert for that: we're planning to bf as long as he wants to. But then he's way up there on the "charts" (90th+), so maybe for us it won't come up. Thx for the caution, tho.
Hey Sarah, Do be aware with Shriner, okay? I'd say at least 75% of the BF babies I know were 90-95% at 6 months, but then "fell" on the charts as they approached a year . . . This is natural, normal, common, safe and HEALTHY for BF babies. (My ds was 95% at 6 mos, 10% at a year, even lower by 18 mos.) The problem is that the "charts" are based on formula-fed babies who just keep gaining and gaining and gaining weight, so of course BF toddlers in comparison are likely to weigh less (not all, but a lot). This "drop" is exactly what concerns a lot of peds, and Shriner, in particular, so just be prepared to either ignore her or educate her if your baby follows this very common BF pattern! And if she ever asks you about night-nursing, I'd say, "Nights are great in our house! I have no complaints!" (even if you do, cause she's all about nightweaning babies after 6 mos or so . . . told one mom I know who was "still" nightnursing her 8 mos old smallish baby that she was "sabotaging her child's health" by continuing to nurse at night!)
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Big thumbs down on Schreiner. She's very nice but we had the exact same experience with her getting pretty unsupportive of breastfeeding after 6 months. At our 9-month appointment she was very concerned that DS wasn't eating much solids (his weight was okay, around 15th %ile) and she gave us a bunch of scary comments, like that if we didn't get him eating solids quick we were going to be looking at having him in therapy as a toddler to learn how to eat. (DS didn't take much to solids until after 12 months but he eats just fine at 2.5.) She also said my breastmilk was not "enough" for him anymore. Then she gave me a handout of the "diet" he was supposed to be eating at that point, with the amounts of jarred baby food, cereal, and ounces of formula I was supposed to make sure he ate at different times of day. I found her entire approach on the matter to be very uninformed. But mostly I was just really offended that she dissed my breastmilk!

She's also not very supportive of not vaxing--we wanted to delay until age 2 but DS ended up being vaxed for DTaP at 2, 4, and 6 months. I knew enough to be uncomfortable with vaxing but not enough to really be firm, and she had me convinced he was going to die of pertussis. At his 9 month appt I had done a lot more research and so we refused any further shots, she was not very happy about that--she was really going for the "get one shot in per visit by any means possible" approach I have since learned is promoted by the CDC for use on reluctant parents such as myself. I'm not sure how long we would have been allowed to stay in the practice had we not left anyway. She REALLY pushed Prevnar at his 2-month appt and would have given him that one before anything else if they'd had it in stock. (I very reluctantly okay'ed it, but then the nurse came back and said they didn't have it after all.) I went home and researched it and couldn't believe what I read. Children not in poverty and not in daycare are considered very low risk for pneumococcal disease, and in fact at that time were recommended by the CDC to forego Prevnar altogether in order to conserve doses for higher-risk children. I had told her I felt DS was low-risk since he was not in daycare, but she was very dismissive of that and said it didn't matter. So I was really surprised when the CDC site itself confirmed he was in fact low-risk and didn't really need that shot. It is also not required by the state of NC for childcare/school. However it is about the most expensive and profitable vaccine currently on the market. I want to give Schreiner the benefit of the doubt that she was not pushing the shot on my son to line her pockets, but the only other explanation is that a pharma rep convinced her that it was absolutely the most essential vaccine a child could get. Either way the lack of evidence/support from official sources to support her urgent recommendation for Prevnar was very disturbing to me.

She also doesn't support co-sleeping although we didn't get into the details on that -- at our first visit she asked if he slept in his own bed and I said yes (he was in a bassinet at that point) and she said, "Good! We don't like it when babies sleep in the parents bed." Which I have to say even then really rubbed me the wrong way, so when DS outgrew his bassinet and started sleeping in our bed I just never mentioned it.

All in all -- I would not recommend Dr. Schreiner for AP/NFL parents. We didn't go back after the 9-month appt.
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