In Boca Raton, Florida Boca VIPediatrics is making great waves in child healthcare by putting a classic twist on modern medicine. Read our interview to learn about their cutting-edge pediatric concierge and global smart office.
- Hi! Please tell us more about yourself and Boca VIPediatrics.
Boca VIPediatrics was created out of a vision to introduce “the perfect pediatric practice” for busy parents who value personalized care, convenience, and time. We like to say it’s our unique blend of old-fashioned service and the most modern medicine. While traditional pediatric practices take thousands of patients, we take just a fraction of that in order to provide the kind of care you just don’t see anymore. House calls, hour long appointments, and the relationship with your pediatrician where I can get to know the whole family. The average doctor’s appointment lasts just 7 minutes…and to me, that’s just not long enough. They say “it takes a village” to raise a child, and we truly provide the “we’re here anytime you need us” type of care for our VIP families.
(Chad Rudnick, MD FAAP is a board certified Pediatrician and the founder of Boca VIPediatrics in Boca Raton, FL. He attended University of Florida, graduated with honors, and attended University of South Florida College of Medicine. Dr. Rudnick did his residency training at Miami Children’s Hospital, ranked as “one of the top children’s hospitals in the U.S.” by U.S. News and World Report.)
- What inspired you to start this innovative health practice?
I’m always inspired by mid-century physicians and how they practiced medicine. I love the idea of a doctor showing up to your home, black bag in hand, and taking care of the whole family. Healthcare wasn’t an “industry,” it was a service. Somewhere in between insurance co-pays and the supply/demand for doctors, the notion of service got lost.
When I met my wife, Ashley, she was working for The Walt Disney Company. Customer service and old-fashioned hospitality are truly her forte. After spending several years perfecting our healthcare model, our mission was truly to bring the service back to healthcare.
I’m also inspired by technology. As a self-proclaimed “tech nerd,” I love finding the latest and greatest gadgets that enhance everyday life. We are constantly scouting game-changing technology that aids in getting children better, faster within our practice.
- Boca VIP Pediatrics is the nation’s first “pediatric smart office” (exciting!). What role does technology play in your pediatrics concierge services?
We are very excited to be bringing revolutionary technology for our VIP families. A lot of these telemedicine tools are not utilized anywhere else simply because insurance companies will not allow physicians to be reimbursed for virtual visits or other practices don’t have the tech-structure to receive and review a virtual visit. Because I work for my patients and not insurance companies, I truly get to provide the treatment plans that work best, using the most innovative tools that are truly the future of medicine.
Some of the most note-worthy are:
Digital Otoscope: The Oto Home clips onto your iPhone and records video of your child’s inner ear to screen for ear infections. The video can be sent to me securely from anywhere in the world! Whether it’s late night, early morning, or your family is on vacation, if a parent suspects an ear infection, I am able to look inside the ear remotely and provide a diagnosis and treatment plan.
Digital Stethoscope: The clinicloud is a digital stethoscope that connects to your smart phone and sends secure heart sounds/lung sounds from anywhere. I’ve listened to my patients’ lungs from the Swiss Alps to diagnose wheezing…how amazing to be halfway around the world and still able to start a treatment plan immediately.
Specialized Viral vs. Bacterial Testing: Rather than guessing whether it’s a virus or bacteria (which determines the true need for antibiotics), our office offers a specialized test that uses a simple nasal swab to test for over 30 different viruses & bacteria. We receive the results in 24 hours, and it allows us to prevent unnecessary antibiotic prescriptions for children. If we do need an antibiotic, this test gives us the ability to know which antibiotic will work best to treat the particular infection.
The “Flinch-less Vaccine Experience”: One of our most recent additions is the use of virtual reality goggles to help in making vaccines as painless of an experience as possible for young kids. Our VIPs can choose from flying helicopters, to swimming with sharks, and even walking on the moon to help distract from getting shots. The response so far has been incredible!
- Please tell us more about your membership perks.
We offer our VIP families 24/7 access to email/text/call directly to my after-hours cell phone. Because of our extremely limited practice size, we also have no waits, longer appointments, and highly personalized care. Virtual visits are always available, so for quick questions, parents can always send a photo or video (of a rash or cough, for example), and can avoid an unnecessary trip to my office for a virtual diagnosis and treatment plan. I also make house calls for the first newborn visit and for urgent care after-hours. When patients need to see a specialist, we get them seen faster and help to quarterback their care so parents have maximum peace-of-mind. Our membership model of pediatric care allows us to truly take the best care of children.
- You are based in Boca Raton, Florida; are most of your patients local? What if someone is visiting the area from out of town, can they still access your services?
While we do serve families in Boca Raton and the surrounding areas in South Florida, we also offer a virtual membership. This virtual membership allows parents from anywhere in the world to have virtual access to their pediatrician 24/7. Whether you’re in between appointments with your current pediatrician, or have a quick question/concern, virtual members essentially have their “pediatrician in their pocket!”
For those visiting from out of town, we also offer house calls or hotel calls for urgent care.
- What is the most challenging aspect of your profession?
The care of a sick child can sometimes be challenging. By default, a portion of my patients are not able to communicate their needs, pains, and wants effectively. This can be frustrating for parents because their child is unhappy and sick, but refuses to take medication. I work with the parents to go over treatment options that will be more amenable to the child. We have even created a list with 100 different ways to get a child to take their medicine!
- What is the most rewarding aspect of your profession?
I have the greatest profession in the entire world (in my very biased opinion). Having the privilege to care for a child from birth through their early adult years is amazing! I love seeing the development and life-events that my patients go through. While I haven’t had this happen yet, I look forward to the day that one of my [former] patients has a child of their own that I will get to care for as well!
- Any expert tips for staying healthy this time of the year?
Hand washing, hand washing, hand washing. Did I mention that kids (and parents) need to wash their hands often? Our fingers are the top 10 carriers of the flu and other viruses/germs. Good old-fashioned soap and water is the way to go, but hand-sanitizers can be used if soap & water is unavailable. Besides hand washing, getting adequate sleep, a healthy diet, and regular exercise is also important! Lastly, it’s never fun to be the one whose child gets the rest of the class sick. If your child is sick, its best to stay home from school that day. Better to miss a day or two of school than risk them picking up an additional infection and get worse.