Check Out This Doc

  1. He schedules 2 patients at the same time for office visit. Nurse says "We have 2 rooms, so we schedule 2 patients." Makes some sense to keep the next room full, ready to be seen, so OK. But I question scheduling them for the exact same time, plus a 3rd and 4th pt for just 15 minutes later.

    Keeps a patient waiting for over an hour so he could conduct a personal problem phone call. Pt was not amused. Nurse tells pt that she has personally been kept waiting 4 or 5 hours in a doc's office and nurse is not empathetic/sympathetic to pt's upset. Seems to me that such a long wait could be understandable in an ER but can't think of anywhere else it would be, even OB's office. Personal biz should be done on his own time, not the patient's. :angryfire

    Doc prescribes 1 oxycodone 5/325 q 12 - 24 hours for severe, severe leg nerve pain, (sciatica) documented by
    x ray and MRI as being for real, i.e., there is plenty of spine pathology to readily see why pt is in pain.

    Doc never brought up the issue of oral Rx. He only did SI joint injections (steroid? 'caine?) and pt had to bring up po RX issue. That's when the foregoing minimalist, IMHO, 'scrip was written.

    Doc's exam consisted of him feeling the SI joints through the patient's sweatpants, while the pt's back was against a chair back. He also stuck his hand under the pt's butt without warning or permission. Pt was embarrassed.

    He gave the first shot without warning, pt yelped, doctor said, "It's ok to yelp, I didn't give you any warning". Uh, why not give a heads-up so the pt would have known to be prepared? Is this guy a sadist? :angryfire

    This guy provides no one to cover his practice while he goes on vacation. Is this acceptable? I think not.

    He accused the patient of faking pain or of yelping aloud excessively "to impress me". Pt states that was absolutely not so, that the patient did experience severe pain that made him cry out, when getting up from the stretcher upon which he lain to get the SI joint shots. Doctor had stated on pt's previous visit that being very sore upon first arising, i.e., changing positions, was diagnostic of sciatica.

    Doctor presented no plan of care to patient other than 2 - 4 shots. There was no mention of PT, TENS, oral meds (until patient asked), nothing. He also did not want to see the x rays patient had brought to the first visit. And he did not address the spondylolisthesis, facet join disease, Pars defect, and disc problems patient had. Reminds me of the saying that if the only tool you have is a hammer, every problem is a nail. Well, if your only tool is SI joint shots, every problem is SI joint itis, it would appear.

    What do you think? Report to whoever owns the practice? Licensing authority? Shut up and vote with feet and just go find different doctor?

    Would you go to a doctor like this or opt for someone else? Do you see things wrong with what he did or didn't do?
  2. Visit Vito Andolini profile page

    About Vito Andolini

    Joined: Jun '08; Posts: 1,489; Likes: 1,704

    15 Comments

  3. by   netglow
    Vito

    The 5-7 an hour is often routine for office... they do expect one to no show... but it's because these kind of visits do not make money, and if a surgeon, the doc dislikes the office part of the job, usually, especially if its routine post-op. However if you come in and you have "surgical patient" written on your forhead, you are a keeper, at least for the moment. I have yet to witness any doc do a full physical assessment including history, Even my personal Docs.

    I actually believe that the physical assessment part is my job, and at clinical they just go to the computer and look for it (have seen interventions ordered off just mine). Yes, I know it is my job... but do think that it would be a good idea for them to do one too... at some point...
  4. by   Hoozdo
    It depends what the doc's specialty is. If he is a pain management Dr. - then I certainly would walk. If he is a neurologist, then I would also switch doctors. If he is an orthopedic surgeon, I might keep him because he isn't proposing to jump into surgery.

    In any case, he doesn't give satisfactory care.
  5. by   Fuzzy
    I wouldn't go to this guy. I don't wait for longer then one hour for a doctor's appointment anymore unless it's at a walk in clinic or ER. I made the appointment, I was there on time, the doctor can be on time to see me unless there's an emergency. If there's an emergency, give me a chance to reschedule unless I have time to wait. I work for a veterinarian. Pet people won't wait for hours for their pets to be seen no matter how good you think you are. His medicine sounds like a little "one size fits most" too. Doesn't sound very compassionate either. I think that I'd spend my hard earned dollars elsewhere, specially since I don't have insurance.

    Fuzzy
  6. by   canoehead
    If you aren't happy, and you can't trust his judgement, why would you go back?
  7. by   3boysmom3
    Sounds like his bedside manner is pretty poor. Re: the waiting issue, it's not black and white. I work in a clinic, and sometimes the docs do run late, but there are all sorts of variables. Sometimes they were making early a.m. hospital rounds before clinic and got bogged down in a crisis. Sometimes the patients scheduled in those 15 minute increments all either run late, or come in early, and have to be juggled, and sometimes some of those 15 minute appointments turn into nightmares- a patient that you thought was a followup, actually brought all her children from out-of-state who have every intention of making this visit a lengthy conference with everybody's questions answered, detailed discussion of every future possible plan of care for the patient, etc. Sometimes the doc gets called to the ER or the hospital during visits.

    However, it is crucial to customer satisfaction to do these things:
    -never let the waiting person think that he's less important than anyone else or that his time isn't valuable.
    -always keep the waiting person informed- let him or her know what's taking so long and when you anticipate the doctor to be with him
    -if the wait gets unreasonably long, offer to reschedule, and apologize!!! No, it's not the nurse's fault, but if she shows some compassion and concern, it can make a big difference.
    -if the doc allows walk-ins, you may be more likely to incur a wait because more people have been squeezed in, but that can work in your favor as well, if you ever need to be the walk-in or work-in.
    -I can't STAND when people book two patients for the same time slot. We don't. Of course there are no-shows; but there are also work-ins, so it's not necessary to overbook.

    If the doc doesn't appear to care, and the nurse doesn't appear to care....then I guess no one cares! And sorry, I really doubt the nurse has waited 5-7 hours for an appointment anywhere. I don't buy it. I've seen two hours, tops, on a really, really, really, really bad day. But that's extremely rare. And again, in those cases, a good office staff can intervene and help ease the frustration that occurs. We've occasionally sent a card to a patient when we know that he had an unfortunately long wait; letting him know that we apologize for the inconvenience and value him as a patient. We do patient satisfaction surveys periodically and act on the results. WE LOVE OUR PATIENTS, AND MOST OF THEM LIKE US!!! And we are fortunate enough to have docs who work hard and try their best to accommodate everyone.
  8. by   BrnEyedGirl
    I used to work in a large cardiology office. The docs had rounds at the hospital, did angios, stress tests, ablations, pacers etc and were on call for ER. The pt's at this office would very frequently bring coolers with food and drinks and plan on being there all day. As a nurse I was amazed that many of these folks knew that their 0900 apt really just meant "today". We would have 9 pts in the waiting room and the doc would get called to ER. Sometimes he would call back and say he was on the way to the cath lab. It would be hours before he would return. His pts liked him and had very few cardiologists to choose from, so most of them kept coming back.

    If you have such strong feelings about the doc just don't go back. You must have a rapport and a sense of trust with your health care provider. You obviously feel he didn't do enough, or the right things,.....don't go back.
  9. by   Vito Andolini
    Quote from canoehead
    If you aren't happy, and you can't trust his judgement, why would you go back?

    I was wanting to know what people thought of this doctor's approach, whether the patient was being too quick to think badly of the doctor. I still would like to know if you see anything wrong with his approach or if you think the patient was being too picky.
    Last edit by Vito Andolini on May 4, '09
  10. by   Vito Andolini
    Quote from 2ndwind
    Vito

    The 5-7 an hour is often routine for office... they do expect one to no show... but it's because these kind of visits do not make money, and if a surgeon, the doc dislikes the office part of the job, usually, especially if its routine post-op. However if you come in and you have "surgical patient" written on your forhead, you are a keeper, at least for the moment. I have yet to witness any doc do a full physical assessment including history, Even my personal Docs.

    I actually believe that the physical assessment part is my job, and at clinical they just go to the computer and look for it (have seen interventions ordered off just mine). Yes, I know it is my job... but do think that it would be a good idea for them to do one too... at some point...
    So waiting in the waiting room until 1300 0r 1500 for your 0800 appointment is routine at your office? You actually keep your patients waiting for 5 - 7 hours routinely?

    If so, are you in a small town where people have no choice of other doctors to go to? They're sort of captive to your practice?

    Do you think this is a good way for patients to spend their time? Why doesn't your office find a more efficient and respectful way to schedule patients? What do you think about the things I described, other than the topic you addressed?
    Last edit by Vito Andolini on May 4, '09
  11. by   Vito Andolini
    Quote from hoozdo
    it depends what the doc's specialty is. if he is a pain management dr. - then i certainly would walk. if he is a neurologist, then i would also switch doctors. if he is an orthopedic surgeon, i might keep him because he isn't proposing to jump into surgery. good point.

    in any case, he doesn't give satisfactory care.
    in what way do you think he is giving poor care?
  12. by   pagandeva2000
    I work for a city hospital clinic for the uninsured and we have patients wait even longer-sorry as it is. We do our best to let people know if their providers are late or whatever we have to do, but so far, most changes are temporary fixes, not permanent solutions. It happens because we have a high volume of patients who have no insurance and are fee scaled to as low as $20 (which will include most labs and diagnostic tests). It appears to be standard that new patients have a 20 minute time slot while revisits are usually 15 minute time slots. That is not respectable, either.

    It sounds as though this particular physician has no bedside manner. I don't believe that personal calls are appropriate when a boatload of people are waiting to see you, but is it that some of these calls are patient related?

    To be honest, I don't really know what to say. Sorry this has been an experience for you. I see in my place of work, most of the physicians, nurses and supportive staff do not wish this to become this way, but due to more people losing positions and health insurance, the problem in my hospital is getting worse rather than better.
  13. by   pers
    I wouldn't like waiting for an hour while a doctor dealt with a personal problem on the phone, but I'm not comfortable faulting him for it without knowing details (that I have no right to know). You can't always control when life will throw a curve at you and sometimes it happens in the middle of the workday and it can't always wait till you get home. If this were a regular thing I'd reconsider though.

    I've waited hours to see doctors on scheduled appointments and I didn't have an issue with it because I've also been the patient who got squeezed in an already tight schedule. Some of the doctors in my area don't even schedule appointments, they are walk-in only. It's not for everyone because you may wait for hours, but at least they know they'll see the doctor that day (versus waiting days or weeks to get an appointment). Did you ask about calling ahead to see if the doctor is running on schedule before leaving home? My doctor used to adjust my grandmother's appointments because she was unable to wait in the office (Alzheimer's) so if he was running an hour late I'd take her in an hour late.

    His bedside manner doesn't sound particularly pleasant and that would bother me. I also would expect there to be more discussion about my plan of care. If he were the best specialist for my issues, I'd try talking to him about my expectations (even if it means scheduling a visit just for that purpose). Even without changes though, if he was a great doctor, I'd likely suck it up and deal as I care more about his medical skills than his personality. If he was just a family doc or I had other options just as good, I'd find a new doctor.
  14. by   CoffeeRTC
    wow....no way I would let anyone I knew go back to this doc.

    SRSLY, waiting that long? 5-7 hrs? Is that for real? If you made an appointment they still make you wait? Wow.

    As far as the treatment plan....No way. One pill per day? Are you kidding me?
    Get to another doctor.

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