Monday, April 20, 2009

Talk About A Dog Chasing His Tail

Lately, I have been spending far more time at the local high school than I have since I attended back it back in the 1980's and 1990's.  This has caused me great stress as I witness first hand just how much waste, poor behaviors and inappropriate actions take place.  The place is full of political red tape, where each teacher requires the same form to be filled out over and over again, then the office needs their own version etc.  As a parent, I have filled out the same form over and over again and then I have to fill it out AGAIN, after one of the teachers misplace it. Well, the public school system is full of these repeat - wastes of time on my part.  Enter the medical system (another wonderfully corrupt public system of "care").

Today, I took Allie to her dermatologist for routine acne treatment.  We have to book the appointment 6 months in advance (talk about ridiculous).  So, we arrived at RECEPTION, where we get in line with other patients waiting to see the various doctors at this facility.  Now, we are line with patients who are there to be seen from everything from a sickness (isn't this great) to an x-ray, maternity, same day surgery, etc.
So, even though we have no need to interact with any of these patients, we are FORCED to wait in line until one bay at reception opens up.
We finally get to one window, (where the teller had her WINDOW CLOSED sign out) and the woman is a grump.  We give her the appropriate insurance card and deductible (as we have done this before).  She looks at us blankly and says, "can I help you?".
So, Allie gives her name and the doctor she is going to see.  The teller gets fed up and acts as if that doctor doesn't exist.
Now, mind you, this woman is sitting behind a computer screen.  I am trying to let Allie handle everything, as I want her to be able to know how to check in etc, as college is 2 years away.
So, the woman finally takes the insurance card and looks up Allie's name.  What do you know, Allie has a dermatology appointment, just like we said!
So, the woman asks me, "do you have a referral?"
I tell her, "This is a follow up appointment with the doctor that we made 6 months ago."
She responds, "Well, you need a referral to see the doctor".
I tell her that I booked the appointment at the office on the way OUT last time at the doctor's request.  Who would I need a referral from?
 She responds, "Let me check your form on the computer.  It says here that your referral is good until August 2009".
Now, I look at her.  She just explained to me that my "form" said that my referral is good for another 4 months and she is giving me grief about having a referral.
I say, "Well, it sounds like we are all set with the referral".
She responds, "No, you have to check upstairs with the doctor's staff, they have more detailed information".
So, I am thinking to myself, this woman is an idiot. Here she gives me a hard time asking me if I have a referral, then tells me I do in fact have a referral, then tells me to check to make sure I have a referral.  WHY IS THIS WOMAN WORKING IN RECEPTION?  She is neither polite nor knowledgeable about her field.

So, we walk up to Dermatology and we hand the pre-printed name labels to the doctor's receptionist.  I nervously ask her if our file is OK, if we need a referral.  She opens her computer screen to Allie's chart in about 5 seconds and tells me we are all set through August 09.  No worries.

Allie and I sit down among the sick and injured and wait for the nurse to bring us to the exam room, so we can wait alone for the doctor.  I look at Allie and tell her that this one makes the blog!
Talk about chasing your tail.  Why did the original receptionist have access to Allie's file if she wasn't going to give out accurate information?  Why bother to let her have access to the file if she wasn't going to look up pertinent information concerning this patient?  I am just floored by the incompetence of these workers.  So, I am led to believe that her medical records are secure when jokers like this have access to her file?  Give me a break.  

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