Things to consider when selecting a medical review provider for your referral:
1. Do you want the reviewer to be local? Most of the providers do not require their families to be local because most everything can be done via email or phone. However, selecting a local provider has its benefits. You will be able to visit them after your child is home and have more personalized follow-up because of the history. Although being local is not necessary, it is a nice benefit.
2. Some providers have more experience with specific countries than others. Research the physicians and ask if they have specific experience with the country from which you are adopting.
3. Find a provider who will work with you to help prepare you before you receive the referral. A good medical provider will take the time to help you understand the different possible special needs and what may be required to deal with them. It is helpful to prepare yourself as much as possible with that information before you receive the referral.
4. Look at timeframes of how fast they can turn reviews around. Some countries require a fast decision and having the doctor provide an assessment quickly might be critical. Some providers have a tiered pricing schedule based on how fast of a turnaround time is required.
5. Your provider should offer in-country support. The ability to be able to Skype or call a doctor when you are facing medical issues in a foreign country provides great piece of mind.
6. What post adoption support is provided? If you are local, find out if the provider offers seminars, training events, parent support groups, play groups, and so forth you can take advantage of. If you are not local, ask if they provide any other support via email or phone.
7. When you have narrowed down possible providers, do not be shy about calling them asking them lots of questions. You can find out a lot about them and how they work with people with an initial phone call which will help you determine a good fit with your family.