Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Health Care Reform I Think We Can All Believe In

* Hire receptionists who know how to make appointments correctly. Yesterday I went to the vet at the time of my appointment only to discover that the person whom I'd made my appointment with had not entered it in the computer. Today I tried to take Quinn to the doctor only to discover that the person with whom I'd made my appointment had booked me in the pediatrician's other office. In an entirely different city.

* Don't let patients leave without performing all the procedures you've charged them for. Again, the vet yesterday. They were somehow able to remember to charge me for my dog's blood draw. But they were unable to remember to actually draw my dog's blood.

* If a patient hasn't been to your office in four years, and the dentist they used to see there has retired, and they don't return your calls, stop calling them to ask if they want to schedule an appointment. Seriously. I have a new dentist. I like her a lot. I've broken up with you. Stop calling. It's just getting pathetic.

* Don't schedule an appointment for 2 p.m. if you have no intention of seeing the patient until 3:30. 'Nuff said.

* Doctors, warm your hands and your instruments. Gynecologists, I'm specifically looking at you.

* Make sure everyone in the United States has quality, affordable health care. How hard could this one be?


  1. Amen sista~esp.the warm instrument thing :)

  2. My dentist from California keeps sending me "you're due to come in for an appointment" cards. To my Virginia address! It's not as though the cards are being forwarded by the post office; they are actually putting my new address on there themselves. As if they think I'm going to book myself an appointment and a plane ticket at the same time. Not. Gonna. Happen.

  3. Totally with you on all of them! I especially believe in #4 when dealing with sick kids. Do you really want me to come in at 2 to have my sick kid infect all the other kids who are there for their well child visit? The parents don't want us to do that to their kid so let me come in at 3:30.

    And #3 also applies to hair salons. I haven't been in 5 years so stop sending me the postcards with your measly discounts for your overpriced hair treatments. Seriously.

    Ok, done with rant! Time for some ice cream!

  4. My two minute test for a new gynecologist has "warms instruments" at the top of the list.

  5. I feel a debate coming on with #6. Those good 'ol high school days might be returning.

  6. Let me know you run for president. You have my vote.

  7. I keep finding our old eye doctor on my caller id of "missed" calls. No message. It feels like they are stalking me. And it's so creepy.

    But yes, ditto on all of it!!

  8. I have solved #4 on my own. When it's time for me to leave for my appointment, I call the office. I let them know when my appointment is and ask if the doctor will be ready then or if I should plan on arriving later. Almost always, you'll get an honest answer, giving you a new time to arrive. Once I check-in, I ask the receptionist if the office is still running on time, and let him/her know that I can only wait 15 minutes. Then, after 15 minutes, if I haven't been seen, I walk out. The two times I've had to do this, the receptionist practically begged me to come back in and I calmly said, my time is important, I'll call you later today to schedule another appointment.

    Of course, this only works for routine stuff. Not sure I'd walk out of a specialist appointment - since those are hard to come by, and obviously I can't walk out of an emergency situation.

    The office I walked out of twice? They see me when I walk in the door now. I'm sure there's a nasty note in my file, but I don't care. Doctors need to realize they are in the service industry, and as such, need to provide good service.

  9. SERIOUSLY!!! You are spot on with every one of these points. And why--please, someone tell me why--anyone would consider arguing with the last one?!

    We are close. . .we're really, really close. I just keep crossing my fingers and saying my prayers. . .

  10. Amen, sister.

    One of our chiropractors used to do the calling thing. The new receptionist was REALLY pushy, and would call over and over, sometimes when the office opened at 7am! We finally had to complain directly to the doctor, and we never went there again.

    That appointment time thing should go for everyone. Why do I have to be available at few minutes' notice for the cable guy, within a TWELVE HOUR window? I can see something slightly smaller, but twelve hours says to me that you need to hire a few more people.

  11. So I see that you're a communist? I bet you want to be on a death panel too.

    I tease because I love and also because I find that fact that there's even a debate about people having access to affordable medical care to be insane and then extra insane.

  12. I can understand charging you for things that aren't actually performed - it's just too hard to pay attention to what you're doing. But that last one about the universal AND affordable AND quality health care? What's so hard about that?

  13. WOOT. Our dentist's office keeps calling and calling and CALLING and CALLING, and finally I talked to a receptionist and said NO I WAS NOT GOING TO MAKE AN APPOINTMENT and she threatened that any patients without appointments would be put on the "inactive" list, and I said FINE, WHO CARES? and then I got a LETTER from the dentist saying that his staff had repeatedly tried to contact me but had been unsuccessful (what?) and that he thought it was really super important that I give him way more money than I was currently giving him, so could I please comply with what he felt was the best way for him to empty our savings? And we didn't reply to that, and a few months have gone by, and now THE CALLS ARE STARTING AGAIN OMG. So we're switching dentists.

  14. Oh, and also: our old vet had a policy that if they were more than 20 minutes past your appointment time, they WAIVED THE OFFICE FEE. Is that not the BEST? Furthermore, the one time they WERE late, it was because a dog was brought in for a poisoning emergency, and they let us know that that was the reason for the delay, and they updated us TWICE, apologizing each time.

    I so wish everyone would do that. I wouldn't mind waiting longer for my doctor appointment if the receptionist told me there had been an emergency. But I SURE DO MIND when there's NO EXPLANATION and it happens EVERY TIME.

  15. I know I'm behind, but I just had to say...Be careful what you wish for on those warmed-up instruments. Because once my very sweet OB warmed up the metal speculum a little too much, and um...Let's just say that there are place on (or in) your body that you NEVER want to have blister.

    And that is my grossout PSA of the day.

  16. I think among universal, quality and affordable we will only get 2 out of 3. However, right now, we have 0 out of 3, so I'm all for 2/3.

    And @Elaine? You. Are. Awesome.


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