Thursday, February 18, 2010

behind the scenes

People have been asking me some questions when I reply to their comments.

(by the way, if you have a blogger account, please go to your profile and check/ tick the box that says "show email address". What then happens is if you leave a comment, it comes through to my email and I can respond directly to you and we can have a nice CHAT :))

Okay then, moving along.

Baby monitoring in South Africa

Obviously if you're seeing the paediatrician, they always weigh and measure the baby.

Outside of those appointments, many of the big pharmacies have a little clinic (one teeny, tiny room) with a nurse who does wellness checks (all the stats), immunisations and also other things like flu vaccinations, cholesterol, blood sugar and BP checks. Nothing is free - the wellness checks at Dischem cost me R45 per baby and I've had my BP checked before at a Clicks pharmacy for R25.

Many of the larger companies (or maybe it's just insurance? because we have doctors who work in underwriting) also have on-site clinics operating at certain hours for staff to use (this is totally free where I work). I can literally walk 5 minutes to the other side of the property and get a cholesterol, blood sugar or BP check every week if I wanted to do so. When I was pregnant and had my one sick day, this is the nurse who checked my BP for me and told me to go home.

Back to the baby checks.

In some medical practices there are also nurses who do wellness checks and immunisations for babies. These are often more expensive but still cheaper than going to the paed.

We're now going to a new nurse who charged us R100 for the consultation but for twins, doesn't charge a double consult fee. This is unusual but I don't argue - less out of our medical savings account.

I prefer the environment of this small medical centre (4 GP's, podiatrist, psychologist and the baby nurse) to the craziness of Dischem.

What I've explained above is all PRIVATE health care for the 15% of South Africans (it may be less) who do have private medical aids.

I don't have any experience about the government hospitals and clinics except that the clinics are completely free IF you're prepared to sit and queue for hours and hours on end.

Our national health is not great. Just the mention of going to a "government hospital" sends shudders through us privileged folk :)

Yes, I moan about this and that, but I do know that I am extremely privileged to be able to afford a private medical aid. If we didn't have it, I dread to think what would have happened with C & K and the NICU.

Let me know in the comments if you want more detail on anything.

Now the baby food.

This is the book I bought at Sadia's recommendation and........... I'm loving it!

I'd never heard of Annabel Karmel before but she is genius.

As I was reading I realised that my kids have been eating really boring food!

On Monday I cooked up some chicken (with carrots, sweet potato) and pureed it like crazy as I was so scared they'd choke.

Tuesday morning they had this for breakfast (yes, my kids are weird - they like their veggies in the morning and their cereal in the afternoon) and.........

Kendra pulled her face as she does with all new food but she still eats it.

Connor? Connor loved it. He literally SMACKED HIS LIPS. Too cute - D and I left late so that we could see them have their first taste of chicken.

I asked Nanny Viola how they've been enjoying the chicken and she says "they LOVE it" :)

I'm trying a new recipe every few days - a different chicken one today - but I expect to have similar reactions.

I can't tell you all the differences she recommends (too many) but I do believe you should get her book if you don't intend to buy jarred baby food (a huge ripoff in my view).

South Africans - I ordered mine from and it arrived on my (work) doorstep within 5 days.


  1. You can start adding spices - a little lemon juice, etc. Many moms just take what they eat from the night before and blend bits of it for their kids. By 8 months you don't really have to blend very much... and by 10 months at all!

  2. i think i need that book!


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