In Reply.—Drs Winograd and Greer highlight some important issues related to the delivery of preventive health services to children by pediatricians. Since I have practiced pediatrics in a community of 10,000 that serves a rural area in upstate New York for 12 years, I can understand the devotion practicing pediatricians have to well-child care, the pleasure they derive in providing it, and the belief they have in the positive outcomes it generates. However, I do not believe most well-child visits accomplish the goals set for them; thus, I cannot sanction increasing the number of visits during infancy, childhood, and adolescence, particularly if, in so doing, the number of patients served, overall, will be reduced.
Pediatricians do locate their practices in medically underserved, inner-city, and rural areas of the United States, and the professional rewards gained usually outweigh the perceived social advantages lost from practicing and living in these locales.
HOEKELMAN RA. Well-Child Visits-Reply. Am J Dis Child. 1983;137(7):708. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1983.02140330089033