Choosing a Pediatrician + AP-Friendly Doctor Recs for Austin


Finding the right pediatrician or family doctor can feel like an overwhelming task. I had no clue what to look for in a doctor after the birth of my first baby. I was lucky in discovering our family doctor through a recommendation I received prior to getting pregnant. Recommendations from trusted friends are certainly a great way to go if their preferences match yours. If you are embarking on calling on a few doctors that you’ve heard good things about to interview the office and determine if the doctor/practice is AP-friendly and a good match for your family, here’s a list of recommended questions to consider:

  • Does the doctor like to give parenting advice on sleeping, letting a baby cry at night, etc?
  • Does he or she support breast-feeding?
  • Does office have a lactation consultant?
  • How hard is it to get same day sick appointment?
  • How far out do they schedule well exams?
  • Does the waiting room have lots of toys?  Germ magnets!

Additional recommended interview questions courtesy of Ashli Pate, Group Leader of the Austin Attachment Parenting Big Tent group:

  • Location?
  • Hours, including after hours availability?
  • Accepting new patients?
  • Charge for private consult?
  • Separate sick/well areas?
  • Accept our insurance?
  • Practice philosophy?
  • Opinion about vaccinations (not doing at all, delaying, giving one at a time)? Use of antibiotics?
  • Comfort level, feelings about, recommendations for the use of integrative therapies (herbal, diet, lifestyle, acupuncture, etc.)?
  • Policy about talking to patients on the phone?
  • How long it takes to get in when sick and when well?
  • Do you (the patient’s parent) like the other physicians in the practice and do they share a similar practice philosophy?

LIST of RECOMMENDED AP-FRIENDLY AUSTIN DOCTORS (This list includes pediatricians and family medicine doctors. Local AP-ers, if you have a name to add to this list, please add a comment or send me an email – thank you!):

  • Elliot Trester, M.D., Central Family Practice 801 W. 34th Street, Suite 102, Austin, Texas 78705.  512.371.9260.  Office Hours: Monday thru Friday 8:30 to 5:00.  Trester gets a lot of recommendations from Austin AP families: Integrated traditional Western medicine and alternative therapies available; Specializes in women’s health; Online Herb Store great resource; Note: Central Family Practice does not file insurance. You must pay cash and file it yourself for reimbursement.

  • Valerie Wheelock, M.D., Barton Creek Pediatrics. 7004 Bee Caves Road, Building 1 Suite 210 Austin, TX 78746.  512.327.0562.  After hours: 512.323.5465.  By Appointment Only: Mon, Tues, Thurs, Fri 8:30 - 5:00; Wed 8:30 – 12:00. On-call doctor 24/7.  Multiple recommendations from AP families in Austin. Though she gives a pitch for vaccines, she supports non, or delayed. Very holistic.  Also, though I’ve never heard of Dr. Wheelock pro-actively making sleep-training recommendations to parents — she has a copy of Ferber’s “How to Solve your Child’s Sleep Problems” in every exam room. So if you ask her advice on this subject, I would expect her to suggest cry-it-out training.
  • Geoffrey Cox, M.D., Seton Health Partners.  7900 Fm 1826 Ste 240, Austin, TX 78737.  512.416.0044. Supports home birth (one of his was born at home); doesn’t push anti-biotics, accepting of non-vax patients and very supportive of breastfeeding; on board of directors for Milk Bank. A few Austin AP Mamas have said they don’t like him/nurses b/c of vaccine pressure and insensitivity to children’s fears.
  • Theresa Pugh, M.D. and Ajay Gupta, M.D., Jefferson Street Family Practice 1101 W. 40th St., Austin, TX 78756.  512.459.4147.  Office hours: Monday-Friday, 8:00-12:00, 12:30-6:00; Saturday, 8:00 AM (by appointment).  Telephone hours: 8:30-12:00, 12:30-4:30.


  • Thomas B. Dawson, MD.  1301 W 38th St Ste 514, Austin, TX 78705.  512.467.1600
  • Roger Gildersleeve, M.D., Sage Family Medicine 1000 Hesters Crossing Suite 200, Round Rock, TX 78681.  512.244.0446. Has online forum where he will directly answer questions 24/7.  Speaks to patients for as long as needed.  Accepting of parents not wanting to vaccinate.
  • William D. Caldwell, M.D., F.A.A.P., Austin Doctor’s Building 1305 West 34th Street, Suite 210, Austin Texas 78705.  512.454.0406.  Office hours: Monday – Friday, 8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. and 1:30 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
  • Samuel A. Mirrop, M.D. 1500 W 38th Suite # 20, Austin, TX 78731.  512.458.5323. Experienced; Listens to parents’ concerns with vaccinations; Tolerant of parents not wanting to vaccinate, but prefers vaccinating children.
  • Sheila D. Boes, M.D., Pediatric Associates of Austin 1500 W 38th Street, Austin, TX 78731. 512.458.5323. Open to alternative vaccination schedules; Can call the office anytime during office hours and speak to a nurse; Supports vaccinating children.
  • Dr. Ting-Chuan Chang/Dr. Wade Travis, Treehouse Pediatrics. 15930 Great Oaks Drive, Round Rock, TX 78681.  512.255.8868.  Office hours: Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m. Saturday 8:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. (sick children only).  Dr. Chang has great reviews, not taking new patients right now though. Dr. Travis is taking new kids, has good reviews as well. Note:  They do not accept patients requesting delayed or select refusal of vaccines.

  • Kristy D. Heatly, d.o./Florence C. Spitler, d.o., Georgetown Family Medicine.  1900 Scenic Dr. Suite 1128, Georgetown, TX 78626.  512.864.2911
  • Jack Louis, M.D., Austin Pediatric Clinic. 711 West 38th Street, Austin, TX 78705.  512-458-6717
  • Lisa Hutchens, M.D., School House Pediatrics. 4201 Bee Caves Road, West Lake Hills, TX 78746. 512.327.1155. Dr. Hutchens is recommended as very AP-friendly, gentle, supportive, quick to return calls and — big plus — open Saturday mornings.  Only negative is that they don’t have separate areas for well vs. sick exams, though they clean toys in waiting area frequently.
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14 Responses to “Choosing a Pediatrician + AP-Friendly Doctor Recs for Austin”

  1. Thanks for this valuable information! I found out about your post on the local AP Big Tent forum and have posted this on my Hypnobabies fan page on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/austinhypnobabies) and on Twitter.

    • Darlene -
      Thanks so much for posting a link for me on your Hypnobabies site! I’m new to this whole blogging thing and appreciate all the help I can get in broadening my readership. I look forward to checking out your site as well!

  2. Jill says:

    I notice you removed some names– is Lakeway ped not an AP friendly practice anymore? I was seeing Dr Hutchins and I love her, but she moved to Cedar Park. Now I am seeking a new vaccine friendly holistic ped near Bee Caves/Lakeway.

  3. Christina says:

    Dr. Dickey is also insensitive to babies fears. My daughter was screaming at the top of her lungs and he didn’t stop the exam. Also told me I needed to get my daughter out of my bed and gave me a ton of parenting advice that I didn’t ask for. Just FYI :)

  4. Lisa says:

    Thanks for this list. Have there been any updates?

  5. Dexy says:

    THank you so much for this list. My family just recently relocated to Austin and I really need to find a pediatrician for my little guys. THis is very helpful. THank you again so much.

  6. Love this! Such a great help for practitioners and parents alike! Spread the good word.

  7. kent says:

    Just wanted to submit note about Treehouse Pediatrics – I just called and they do not accept new patients wanting alternate vaccine schedules or select refusal.

  8. I’m expecting my first babies in July… that’s right babies, we are having triplets! I’ve been doing a ton of research on vaccinations and I’m looking for a peditrician that supports delayed vaccination schedules in the Lakeway, Bee Caves, Spicewood area. Do you have any suggestions?

    Thank you!

  9. David says:

    I’ve been having a good experience with Kangos Pediatrics in Cedar Park.

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