Monday, January 12, 2015

Rainy days, Mondays, and the doctor's office. A trifeca!

Today is Monday and it's raining...     just like the song.    It's hard to be excited about rainy days even though I know our earth needs the water.  It's essential for everything.  But, still it makes the outdoors wet and a bit of a challenge for getting around.

I don't like to complain on my blog.  But, sometimes, days like today, and events like what happened today just annoy me.  I think it will help to write about it and perhaps "get it off my chest."

But, first...    I need to go back to a few weeks ago, back before Christmas.    And, I need to tell you that I am fortunate to be a very healthy person for my age (for any age) and I am blessed with only little problems.  But, yes, I take 2 meds on a regular basis.  The one I take every day - and the other just once a month. 

Before Christmas I realized that my "Automatic fill" on my every day medicine was done.  I mentioned it at my pharmacy (CVS) and they offered to fax the doctor's office to tell them.  So, I said great!  I waited a few days and went back to my pharmacy.  There had been no response from the doctor's office - so they sent another fax.   I waited.   Nothing.   Finally, it was December 24th, and I realized I would not have enough pills to make it through the holiday weekend.  I went back to my pharmacy....  they still had not heard from my doctor's office.

So, I got in my car and drove directly to my doctor's office, and yes, thankfully, it's not very far away.  I arrived at 11:45am on Christmas Eve day and went and pulled the door to go in, but it was locked.  A sign taped to the door said "Holiday hours:   Christmas Eve 8am to 12:00noon."  But the door was locked!   I started to panic and called the phone number on the door - and a woman picked up. Phew!  But as I explained I was outside she told me she is in another town, and takes calls for making appointments.    I then called again...went through the list of "if you need to reach so and so, dial 1, for so-and-so dial 2...etc.".   I left a pretty irate message about arriving before the posted closing time and that I was in need of my drugs.

I felt like I was some druggie looking for a fix!  I wondered if they thought that when they finally heard the message (whenever that was.)      Anyway, I stood there for a good ten minutes making phone calls and just being "in a pickle" on what to do...when a woman came out the side door. I bolted over to her - and told her my story (did she think I was a druggie too??)  But, she let me in the back way and she called the pharmacy and ordered just enough for me to get throughthe holidays... and then said to come in for an appointment with the doctor.

Christmas and New year came and went.  I immediately called and made an appointment with the Physican's assistant...thinking it was just for refills, and that would be fine.   3 days before my appointment was to happen, the office called me and said she would not be in the office that day (this was 3 days before - so it wasn't sickness.)  I had to reschedule.  Okay.  I did.... for the following week. My appointment was today.

My appointment was at 2:30pm so I arrived at 2:15pm knowing I had a new insurance card and it would take a few minutes to enter the new info into the computer. I like to be ready and on time.

Right at 2:30 or so I got called back to an exam room!  Yeah!!!   

The nurse came in and asked why I was know typical questions; I just need 2 precrips refilled.  Everything else with me was fine. No other issues.  No questions.   Nothing.   She took my blood pressure - routine I realize.   Then she left.

And I waited.... and waited.... and waited.     And waited - and waited.

Finally after being in the room for 30 minutes (and listening to talking in the hallway), I popped my head out - thinking gee, maybe they forgot I was in there.    Wouldn't it be common courtesy to have someone come in and say they were running behind??    The physican's assistant who I was scheduled to see was directly across the hall in another exam room,  with the door open. She looked at me and said "I'll be there in just a few minutes.".

15 more minutes went by.

Yes....  finally, she walked in.  And I admit it - by that time I was "chippy" and annoyed and didn't want to spend anymore time in that exam room.  I had already sat there 45 or 50 minutes - and I wondered just how many other SICK people had been treated in there before me.   Germs were probably everywhere!  I had been breathing them, touching them on the table, etc.   It was hot in there.

So, I was short in my tone, and more than a bit put out.  I was not my cheerful self.  I felt I had been held captured by the system and there was nothing I could do but be quiet and just be happy I was finally being seen.

Does the story end there?    Of course not.  In the past I had gotten 12 months automatic renewal on the daily med.   But, oh - the physician's assistant said the prescription had already been printed out and it was for 6 months!  What?  I have to come in in 6 months from now again??     I asked....annoyed.   Oh no she said,  just call her!   Oh sure.  

As I said earlier I am a healthy person and I got very turned off by the lack of compassion, and just no courtesy for me having to wait long.  Maybe if I'd been sick and feeling rotten I would have not cared and really just been thankful someone would eventually help me. 

In general, in life  don't want to "settle" for this behavoir - and I feel as a patient/client I should be respected.  

Already, I left a practice in town before this one because the doctor was very into himself, and talked about himself every visit I went to, instead of being concerned about me - and the reason I came in.   He was that way every time I went,  and finally I had enough.   So, I switched.  Now, I'm thinking of switching again.

But - will I find a medical office where the front office and the back work together?  I mean - what's hard about this:  don't put a person into an exam room until they are NEXT.   And, will I find a place that can figure out the prescription system better?  (The faxes don't go through??   Get a NEW fax machine!)   I think it's silly to be in an exam room where sick people are treated before you, and to have to wait for a prescription renewed.     And, who do I write to with "constructive criticism" about the place?   Just who is in change? 

Okay. Rant done.   Frustration still abounds tough.  I already dread the next time I need a new medicine, or an actual examination and treatment.   

.....     is it wine time???     

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