Eva Whitley (wouldyoueva) wrote in bad_service,
Eva Whitley

Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice...won't get fooled again

Doctor's office is chronically late with appointments, and today was the last straw when they managed to be late from the first appointment.

The first time I made an appointment at MedPeds at Laurel, Maryland, they ran late. But I philosophically accepted it, emergencies happen, etc. And I had an evening appointment, so they had had all day for things to get delayed. I didn't have anything going on that evening, so I let it slide.

I specifically picked this practice BECAUSE they had evening appointments so I wouldn't have to stress about missing work, missing the last bus to the city, etc.

Later appointments: never was able to get another evening appointment. I'd call for something not-emergency related, and they'd offer me 1 pm appointments to which I'd say, "Well, I work during the day, do you have something else?" and they'd come back with a 2:30 appointment, because, of course, this is America where we usually work 9-2:30.

I'll accept an inconvenient appointment in mid-day (although it blows my whole day) but weeks in advance? Sometimes that isn't even enough, as one time my son had a high fever and other flu symptoms and they refused to see him because I didn't provide them enough notice, and told us we should go to a clinic. (Don't people go to private practices so they can AVOID going to a clinic?)

This wouldn't be so bad, except their scheduling is a joke. That 1 PM appointment? I ended up being seen around 2:30. Had I known the 1 PM appointments were really 2:30 appointments, I could stay at work 90 minutes more and make more than enough to cover the co-pay and prescriptions. This has been a chronic problem--I think every appointment we've ever had has started at least 30 minutes after the appointment time. I've given them second chances, third chances, two years worth of chances--I think they're trying to tell me something.

I'm tired of this, so I asked if I could get the first appointment of the day. How can you get behind on the first appointment of the day? Here's how: you schedule TWO people in the same appointment slot, and then schedule the next appointment 15 minutes later. I sat and waited for 30 minutes, and then gave up, but not quietly. They told me the doctors like double-booking appointments.

Well, the doctors may like it, but I will tell you I don't, and I don't think the guy with the next appointment, which hadn't started by the time I stomped out, liked it either. So I'll be disputing the co-pay (why should I have to pay for their idiot scheduling?), and looking for a new doctor, and telling my insurer why I'm switching but I don't think I'll ever find as good a doctor as the one I left back in my old town, 90 minutes away. (Same day appointments, true evening hours, X-ray machine in his office so if you hurt your ankle on a Sunday, he can come in, x-ray it, and save a trip to the ER. Oh, and he made a house call one time. In this century.) Although if they expect me to wait 90 minutes to see a doctor, maybe it would pay to go back there!

And if you know a good GP in the Silver Spring/Burtonsville/Laurel/Beltsville (Maryland) area who doesn't pull this crap, and who takes United Health Care, pass along his or her name, please?
Tags: *medical/pharmacy, first do no harm?
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