Problems Making Doctor Office Appointments, Anybody Else??

Intro: I’m having issues with the doctor’s office…

The Story:

I haven’t been on this website in a long time. And to have been such a long time since I have been on, it is nice to see how many more posts and stories have been added to it. The fact that I can relate to so more people is quite relieving.
From my last post “My story of hope and UC“, things have been up and down for me. I have been having flare ups that only last a week and then disappear, and pop up again two weeks after!
I have been having difficulties trying to make appointments to see my doctor! It’s awful. Every time I call to make one, they always tell me they will call back the same day, but never do!! Recently, my doctor just hired a new assistant, and she doesn’t like to call people back the same day, or the day after that! I have to constantly call, to get through, and most of the time can’t! It is ridiculous. I just got a letter from the office saying I had missed an appointment that I have never made! It states that if I do not make an appointment within the next few days that I will be discharged from the practice…
Does anyone have this problem?? If I can’t get through then I can’t make an appointment, if I can’t make an appointment then I will get discharged. And the other practice where I live is on the other side of the state!!
I don’t know what to do about the situation.
Does anyone else have any insight?
Thank you and God Bless.

Submitted by “Lisa_GTP” in the Colitis Venting Area



3 thoughts on “Problems Making Doctor Office Appointments, Anybody Else??”

  1. Eeeyup! The medical system is screwed up alright. My doc is only allowed by the medical group to see me every few months. In between you get to leave messages with desk staff and nurses, which go back and forth to the doctor, right or wrong, like a game of Whisper Down the Lane. While face-to-face interaction with the doc is a rarity, he seems considerably more available to interact with the other end: If I call and say I’m unwell and ask for advice, my call will be unceremoniously returned by a staff member scheduling me for a scope. But scheduling for that seems to be a mess too – because I couldn’t make the one close-range appointment they had available and had to reschedule, I’ve got to wait a month, merrily flaring away. The doc won’t recommend or prescribe anything til he scopes me.

    So, it seems, even if we’re lucky enough to have medical coverage, we’re largely on our own. Big props to Adam for setting up this site so at least we can trade info with each other – and vent!

    I ran into the “you missed an appointment you didn’t have so we might dump you” letter threats once (actually it was at my PCP). When I called about it they said, “Oh, just disregard that!” And everything was fine. Apparently those letters were just to scare people. I’m not sure that’ll be the case at your office, but you could start by calling them. You could also follow up by sending a letter, and then keep a copy so you have it in writing. On the off chance they still try to discharge you, you should have recourse through your state’s department that regulates medical practices. If you can’t find who to contact there, try calling your Congressman’s office and asking them to help you sort it out.

    By the way, the AMA has guidelines for doctors about discharging patients. They’re not supposed to just do it willy-nilly, and they’re supposed to make sure you have an alternative for care:

  2. Unless you live in a rural area with limited doctors, I would say dump the doctor. You have enough to worry about and this is not acceptable. It took me awhile to think this way, but I had to.

    I have multiple autoimmune diseases and some other resulting issues so I have had five doctors for the last few years but also had several other doctors at times over the years. I have never put up with this kind of issue and nor should you. There are plenty of good doctors.

    Good luck!

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