Tuesday, October 19, 2004

There is no excuse for poor reception...

I cannot understand what is up with the receptionist at my pediatrician's office.

I called yesterday inquiring about my daughter's flu shot appointment and the current vaccine shortage. I was told that they would not reserve dosages, even for high-risk patients no matter how far ahead you scheduled your appointment. My daughter is considered high-risk as she is only 10 months old.

So I asked to speak to the nurse because the receptionist couldn't tell me if it would be a good idea or not to try to get an earlier appointment...

The nurse got back to me and told me I could bring Maggie in that day.

There I was sitting in the waiting room and I heard the receptionist making phone calls, "I'm calling from Dr. So and So's office to let you know that because of the flu vaccine shortage we are going to need you to come in sooner so that your child can get their vaccine. If you have any questions call us at blah blah blah..."

Maggie got her flu shot and I was told to call back in a month so that she could get the second dosage - IF they have it. But, if they don't have it - it's no big deal and she should be fine. (More contradictions, I just LOVE modern medicine.)

When I got home I checked the answering machine and guess what I heard?

Oh yes, the very same ding-bat receptionist...

There she is calling my house and leaving a message to let me know that MAGGIE (who is in the office) can come in AT ANY TIME to get her flu vaccination - this was followed by TWO additional phone messages from her - telling me that Ethan and Katie did not meet the "high risk" requirement for the vaccine.

Three individual messages on my machine and the WHOLE time I am sitting right there not ten feet away from her.

This isn't the first time. Last July I showed up for an appointment that I had scheduled two months in advance for Maggie's immunizations. The receptionist looked at me like I was nuts. The doctor had already gone home for the day because she didn't have any afternoon appointments. I showed her the card that SHE had filled out at our last visit... and there was no apology or anything... just, "Oh... well, I'll have to reschedule you."

There are a lot of doctors around here that let their staff get away with everything short of murder. Of course, most staff members consist of the doctors wife or at least the person he's involved with in some way. And, no that wasn't a broad generalization.

Every dentist I know (I'm an ex-dental assistant/dental office manager) has his wife involved in his practice in some way. The first doctor I worked for had his wife managing the office - later I found out that while he was married to his first wife, he met wife number 2 (current office manager) while she was his RECEPTIONIST!!!

My old gynecologist has his wife managing the office. I'm not sure that I'd want to be in the office while my husband is in another room touching other women. Clinical or not... it's wierd.

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