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    Kin Tell A Lot About This Patient

    | Saskatchewan, Canada | Bigotry, Language & Words

    (I work at a walk-in clinic. A new patient has come in and I am gathering his information for his file at the front desk. He has blond hair, blue eyes, and is 30. He has been otherwise polite to this point. Note that another patient is standing in line behind him.)

    Me: “So, that’s almost it. Last question: who’s your next of kin?”

    Patient: “Am I Mexican?! What kind of racist question is that? I ain’t no Mexican freak, you racist B****!”

    Me: “Sir, I didn’t ask if you were Mexican. I asked for your next of kin.”

    Patient: “What the f*** is a ‘next of kin?’ You are just trying to make things up to cover up your racism!”

    Other Patient: “‘Next of kin’ is your emergency contact, moron.”

    Patient: “Oh, in that case, my mom. Her contact info is the same. I still live at home.”

    Other Patient: “That explains so, so much…”

    Intrinsically Disadvantaged

    | Richmond, Virginia, USA |

    (I work in a doctor’s office calling previous patients asking them to rate the quality of their visit. If they rate it “good” or below, I have to ask why and take down the reason. I have just gotten through most of the questions, when I ask the final one.)

    Me: “…and would you rate our billing service as excellent, very good, good, fair, or poor?”

    Patient: “Oh, good, I guess.”

    Me: “Okay, and may I ask why you didn’t rate it excellent or very good?”

    Patient: “It’s a BILL!”

    Me: *laughing* “All right, I will make sure to make a note of that. Thank you very much and have a wonderful day!”

    Noon, Not Too Soon, Part 2

    | Great Neck, NY, USA | Extra Stupid

    (I call patients the day before their appointment to remind them.)

    Me: “Hello, [patient], I am calling to remind you of your appointment with [doctor] tomorrow at noon.”

    Patient: “Okay, what time is my appointment?”

    Me: “Noon.”

    Patient: “But what time is my appointment?”

    Me: “Noon.”

    Patient: “What time is noon?”

    Me: “Um, it’s at twelve o’clock…in the afternoon.”

    Patient: “Oh, great. Thanks! I’ll be in.”

    Related:
    Noon, Not Too Soon

    Misery Demands Company, Part 2

    | Columbus, OH, USA | Family & Kids

    (Our office has stickers for the kids that come in. A patient’s child spots them on the way out.)

    Child: “Can we get stickers?”

    Patient: *sighing* “Can he have a sticker?”

    Me: “Of course!”

    Patient: *rolls eyes heavily* “Okay…well, don’t get your hopes up.”

    Child: “Do they have SpongeBob or superheroes?”

    Me: “Of course we do!”

    (The patient sticks her hand in container, fiddles around, and pulls her hand out empty despite the container being filled with stickers.)

    Patient: “Nope, looks like they don’t. We’re leaving.”

    Related:
    Misery Demands Company

    Health Care(less), Part 2

    | Seattle, WA, USA |

    (A patient comes in for a follow-up. I check their insurance card for charges.)

    Me: “It seems that you have a $25 charge. You can pay that in cash, check, or credit card.”

    Patient: “I don’t have charges anymore.”

    Me: “Oh, did you get a new insurance company?”

    Patient: “No, I just don’t have charges anymore.”

    Me: “Do you have a new card that reflects that change? If not, I’m required to collect your charge. Then, if it turns out you don’t have one, we will refund it to you.”

    Patient: “No, I don’t have a new card. But President Obama says I don’t have to pay.”

    Me: “The president told you that you don’t have to pay?”

    Patient: “Yeah. He says that Americans get healthcare for free now.”

    Me: “Oh, I understand now. However, I think you’ve misunderstood. The Healthcare Bill doesn’t eliminate charges except for preventative, and doesn’t make healthcare free. It just restructures some health insurance policy and such. And it hasn’t gone into effect yet. So, you still have a charge.”

    (She reluctantly pays her charge.)

    Patient: “Expect to hear from President Obama about this. And don’t expect any sympathy either when he gives you the chair.”

    Related:
    Health Care(less)

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