Orthopedic Center | Frequently Asked Questions

What if the provider I want my child to see does not have any openings for several months?

There are 28 providers that would happy and willing to see your child. If there is one provider that is booked out for two months, there may be another provider who will be able to see your child within a week. Each provider has several subspecialties, and the patient representative will be able to recommend several providers who will be able to offer the care your child needs.

My child's appointment is at 9:00 a.m. Will my child be back to school by 11 a.m.?

You may want to reschedule your child's appointment to a more convenient time. Traffic and parking in the Longwood Medical Area can take quite a bit of time. It is a very congested area, and you should take this into account both in arriving for your appointment on time and when leaving to go home.

The length of the visit may vary depending on where the patient needs to go. There could be many stops, depending on what your child needs to have done—radiology, nuclear medicine, brace shop, and the cast room are among a few. Each of these stops requires a separate wait—and adds to the length of time you will be at Boston Children's. You should allow several hours for your visit. The providers do their best to keep the sessions running on time, but periodically a complex case may cause the session to run slightly behind. The front desk staff will try to keep the patients' families informed of any wait time issues.

What do I do if I see a family who arrived after me called in to the exam room before my family? 

Remember that there may be several providers in session at a time. The family who arrived after you may be seeing a different provider from yours. Also, patients are seen and called in by the time of their appointments, not in the order of when they arrive. Keep in mind the family who arrived after you may have their appointment scheduled before your child's scheduled time.

How do I reschedule an appointment with the Orthopedic Center? 

To cancel and reschedule appointments, you need to call 617-355-6021 and press option 1 to speak with a patient representative.

Will I still be seen if I do not have a referral? 

If you do not have a referral from your referring physician, you may be asked to reschedule your appointment or have the option to sign a waiver and pay a $50.00 waiver fee. If you get a referral to us by noon on the next business day, we are able to return the waiver fee. Call 617-355-5695 or 617-355-2460 to provide the referral information. It is recommended that you pay the waiver fee with a check or charge; it makes it easier to stop payment. If you get a referral after a 24-hour period, you will have to wait until the insurance company pays the claim. This may take as long as 60-90 days. Your waiver fee will then be automatically sent back to you. This process is fully automated and there is no way to speed up the process. If, after 90 days, you have not received a refund, call our billing company at (888) 244-5316.

Tests and Prescriptions

If my child is a return patient and we need to have x-rays taken prior to the appointment, do we go straight to outpatient radiology?
Before you go to radiology, you must check-in at the orthopedic center. There you will receive your x-ray requisition form and will need to bring that form with you to outpatient radiology. It is also important to remember to arrive 45 minutes prior to your orthopedic appointment to allow enough time to go to radiology and back to the orthopedic center.

Can I receive copies of my x-rays, CT scans and MRIs that were done at Boston Children's? 
You may receive copies of your films. However, you must go through the Boston Children's film library. They may require a fee depending on the number of copies you need. You may contact the film library to order your requests at 617-355-6283.

I forgot to request my child's physical therapy prescription at the appointment, and my insurance company will not cover physical therapy for my child without a letter of medical necessity. Who should I call to get the prescription and letter? 
You would need to leave a message with the clinical assistant at 617-355-6021. It will be an automated voice prompt that will ask you to leave the necessary information needed for the physical therapy prescription and letter of medical necessity. Not only can you leave requests for letter of medical necessities on this line, but requests for equipment prescriptions and physical therapy prescriptions as well. Other notes besides a letter of medical necessity, such as school and gym notes, can also be requested by calling this number. Please allow 24 hours before calling to follow up with your requests.


If my child needs surgery, how soon will I be able to schedule a date? 
A surgery will be scheduled for your child based on the severity of the need for surgery and the availability of the surgeon. Once the necessary paperwork is filled out for the surgery, the surgical coordinator will arrange a date for your child. There are seven surgical coordinators, and each has two or three designated doctors. To speak with one of the surgical coordinators, please call 617-355-6021.


I received a bill for my child's orthopedic appointment. I have several questions about the bill. Who should I call? 
Before calling the billing department, please note that the Children's Orthopaedic Surgery Foundation is responsible for the office visit with the physician or other healthcare provider.

Visits to Radiology or the Cast room would constitute a bill from Boston Children's Hospital. Patients seen in the Cerebral Palsy Program will also receive a bill from Boston Children's Hospital.

Billing questions about office visits from the Children's Orthopedic Surgery Foundation should be directed to (888) 244-5316. Questions about other hospital services that are billed from Boston Children's Hospital should be directed to 617-355-7114.


Where can I get my parking ticket validated?
Parking tickets for the Boston Children's Parking Garage (located across the street from the hospital's main entrance) can be validated at the following Boston Children's locations:

Main Reception Desk
Hours: Monday through Friday, 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. Saturdays, Sundays and Holidays, 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Emergency Services
Hours: 24 hours a day, 7 days a week?(parking validation for emergency patients only)

Parking Office
Boston Children's Hospital Garage, First Floor, Hours: Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

For more information, call Boston Children's Parking and Transportation Office at 617-355-6251 between 7 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.

Do you offer valet parking, and how much does it cost? 
Valet parking is available 24 hours a day for an additional $4 above the parking garage fee. The fee is waived for cars with handicapped plates/placards.

Visitors may drop their cars at the hospital's Main Entrance to be parked. When leaving, visitors must present their valet tickets at the valet station in the Main Lobby. Cars will be brought to the Main Entrance driveway. For more information about valet parking, call 617-355-4168 between 6 a.m. and 8:30 p.m.

Additional parking information


My child has been unable to sleep due to the pain in her back and the discomfort of the back brace she wears at night. Who can I call to discuss these concerns or any other orthopedic concerns that may come up? 
You may speak with one of the orthopedic nurses to discuss your concerns. There is always a nurse covering the phone Monday-Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. You need to call 617-355-6021 and press option 3 to speak with one of the nurses. The nurse may be on the phone during the time of your call, and you may have to leave a message. When leaving a message, please speak slowly and clearly and provide the patient's name, medical record number, date of birth, a phone number where you can be reached and a brief message summarizing your concern, and you will be called back promptly.

Please note, if you are calling outside of business hours, and your matter is urgent, please call 617-355-6000 and have the orthopedic resident on call paged.

My child's recent diagnosis or condition causes me concern and confusion. Is there a place in the hospital where I can go to find out about it and speak with other families in a similar situation?
The Kohl Center for Families at Boston's Children's helps families find the information and resources they need in order to understand their medical condition and take part in their care. All patients, families and professionals are welcome to benefit from the services provided by the center at no extra cost. The center is open Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., and on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. You may call 617-355-6279 for more information.

What are residents and fellows? Are they doctors? 
Yes, residents and fellows are doctors. A resident has finished medical school and has completed a one or two-year internship. Residents who are in orthopedics at Boston Children's are in their third year of residency and are working to receive specialty training in orthopedics. A fellow has finished a five-year residency program and is specializing in pediatric orthopedic surgery. The fellowship program lasts for one year.