Why God Why?

The receptionist at my rheumatologist’s office just called to tell me that she made a mistake when she scheduled my appointment for Monday, June 14 with the nice Dr. since I am a patient of Dr. Blank.  (DEEP BREATH…)  She said it is their office policy to not allow patients to switch Dr.s.  I said, “So even though it is my choice as a patient to chose my Dr., because of your office policy I can’t choose. ”  I told her that when I saw the nice Dr. when he filled in for Dr. Blank, I told him that I wanted him to be my Dr. and he said it would be tricky (– not impossible).  I am so upset about this. So, now I don’t have an appointment. When she asked me if I wanted an appointment with Dr. Blank the same day, I told her no. I also told her to tell them that I might be getting my records.

I hate conflict.  I am not the type to get in someone’s face and argue or yell.  I mean, don’t provoke me, but generally speaking, I try to avoid conflict.  I feel stress as a result of this incident involving the Dr. world.  Needless to say, I have already begun my search online for other rheumatologists as possibilities.  But if I have to start from scratch with another rheumatologist, I will have to wait three or four times as long to get an appointment since I will be a new patient.  But I might also find a great Dr. that values what I have been doing to support my immune system naturally and understands the importance of breastfeeding.  Oh wait–I already did find that Dr.  But I can’t get an appointment with him because of an office policy!

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4 thoughts on “Why God Why?

  1. I had the same thing happen with an endocrinologist years ago. I ended up changing practices, but I wish I had pushed it farther. Might be worth a letter to the nice doc (possibly cc’d to the office manager) stating that if they–as a practice–want to keep your business they will work it out. I think dr’s forget that we are consumers and can take our business elsewhere. I’d love to hear from some docs out there–just what IS the big deal? Isn’t the patient-doctor relationship important? If so, then finding a good fit should benefit both doctor and patient.

  2. Thanks so much for the suggestion, Kris. I am going to do just that–write a letter. I appreciate hearing about your experience switching practices too. Now that I am not as upset, I see that they probably have the office policy in place to eliminate competition among them. A peace keeping policy of sorts. So, hopefully the letter will help. Because like you pointed out, the patient-doctor relationship is important. Even though I just want a Dr. I feel good about managing my care, I feel like I would be stirring up a little trouble if I get in to see him. I feel like I should also write a letter to my current Dr. explaining why I don’t want a young, single, cocky Dr. who apparently sees fit to punish me for not following his protocol.

  3. I recently changed rheumatologists also. I didn’t actually realize the new one was in the same building as the old one until I scheduled the appointment (my PCP referred me to her). The receptionists started to give me a hard time too and I finally said, “that is fine, I will cancel my appointment and find someone else.” They let me change. But I thought that was a little weird that I can’t make that decision on my own, that it has to be approved. Weird.

    • I’m so glad you got to change. In my case, I’m so glad that they wouldn’t let me change. Doesn’t always happen–but this time the “Why God, Why?” question was answered! Yeah! Can’t wait to meet the new AP doc/rheumatologist.

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