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Survival Of The Fittest In Action

, , , , | Healthy | May 14, 2009

Me: “Hello, this is [Doctor]’s office. Can I help you?”

Patient: “Yeah, is there an injection I can get for my gout?”

Me: “I don’t think so. I think we only give injections for muscle pain, but I can double-check for you.”

Patient: “Yeah, check. I’m going away this weekend and my ankle really hurts. My primary doctor says it’s not gout. I had these labs done, and they all say it’s not gout, but it really hurts.”

Me: “It’s not gout, but you want to know about a gout injection?”

Patient: “Well, they say it’s not gout, but I was at a bar and a guy looked at it and said, ‘That’s gout, all right!'”

Me: *pause* “A guy at the bar?”

Patient: “Yeah. And he gave me one of his pills, and it really helped.”

Me: “You took a pill from some guy in a bar?!”

Patient: “Yeah, it really helped, and it was gout medicine, so I think I have gout. So, is there an injection?”

Me: “Hold, please.”

(At this point, I go ask my manager if a gout injection exists, which it doesn’t, and I explain the situation. She agrees that this is completely stupid, but that if the woman wants gout medication, we can prescribe it.)

Me: “Thanks for holding. Turns out there’s no injection for gout.”

Patient: “Really? My ankle’s killing me.”

Me: “Well, if the medicine you took worked for you, we may be able to write you a prescription for it.”

Patient: “Oh, I already have a prescription.”

Me: “You… already have a prescription that stops your pain? Are you taking it?”

Patient: “No, I thought an injection might be faster.”

Me: *long pause* “Is there anything else you need today?”

Patient: “No, thank you.” *click*

Me: “Oh. My. God.”

Hippocrates Is Rolling Over In His Grave

, , , , | Healthy | May 13, 2009

Me: “Thank you for calling. How can I help you?”

Doctor: “I need to verify my patient’s coverage. Her number is [number].”

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, but there is a problem and I can’t access that account. I will have to forward this issue over to our technical department, and they will get back to you as soon as possible.”

Doctor: “I need this information immediately. Can I talk to them now? It’s very important.”

Me: “I’m sorry, they are very backed up over there and everything is handled in the order it is received. You will be added to the queue and they will get back to you later today.”

Doctor: “What if she was dying and I needed her coverage information? What then?!”

Me: “Ma’am, with all due respect, if the patient was dying there in your office, I would hope you would treat her regardless of her insurance coverage.”

Doctor: “Well, yes — I mean… Just make sure they call me today.” *click*

It’s Called Healthyitis

, , , | Healthy Right | April 16, 2009

Me: “Thank you for waiting. My name is [My Name]. What is your call regarding?”

Patient: “Yeah, I want to ask the nurse a question.”

Me: “Is this regarding symptoms you are experiencing?”

Patient: “Yeah… well, kind of.”

Me: “What symptoms are you experiencing?”

Patient: “Actually, none.”

Me: “You are experiencing no symptoms?”

Patient: “Yeah… I have no pain and I just want to know if that is normal.”

He’ll Raise The Dead And Validate Your Parking

, , , , | Right | February 19, 2009

(A woman comes into my clinic with her six-year-old daughter and approaches the receptionist.)

Customer: “Hi. I need my daughter’s eyes fixed.”

Employee: “Sorry?”

Customer: “My daughter. She’s blind. I need you to fix it.”

Employee: “Oh, um… Is she totally blind? Can’t see a thing? How about light?”

Customer: “No, she’s completely blind.”

Employee: “I’m sorry, ma’am, but I don’t think we can help you. How long has she been this way?”

Customer: “Oh, all her life. She was born blind.”

Employee: “Why didn’t you look for help earlier?”

Customer: “DON’T TELL ME HOW TO RAISE MY CHILDREN, MISSY!”

(After listening in on the conversation, I decide to step in.)

Me: “Is there a problem here?”

Customer: *pulls her daughter’s arm* “Yes. My daughter is blind and you need to fix it.”

Me: “Ma’am, I’m sorry, but there’s really nothing we can do. We don’t treat things like that here.”

Customer: “NO! You call yourself an eye doctor?! You must be able to fix her, and you WILL!”

Me: “Like I said, I can’t do that.”

Customer: “Well, godd*** you all to h***! I’m going somewhere that will actually help us!”

Me: “Ask Jesus, I heard he was good at that.”

Customer: *storms out*


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Deranged Decades

, , , , | Right | November 17, 2008

(I used to work summers for my dad, who is a psychiatrist.)

Me: “Good morning, Dr. [Name]’s Office, how can I help you?”

Caller: “Hi, I need to make an appointment with Dr. [Name]. Can I speak with him?”

Me: “Sorry, he’s with a patient right now but if you give me your information, I’ll set up an appointment for you. Are you currently a patient of Dr. [Name]?”

Caller: “Yes, I was a guinea pig of his when he did lithium experiments on me back in the 1940s.”

Me: “Um… I think you got your dates wrong. Dr. [Name] wasn’t born at that time.”

Caller: “Oh, then in the 1950s. It was in the 1950s and he and the government were running secret experiments on me at that time.”

Me: “I doubt that, he would have just been a young child at that time.”

Caller: “Then it was the 1960s, d*** it! It was at the [Hospital] in Alberta in the 1960’s.”

Me: “Dr. [Name] has never practiced in Alberta. He wasn’t even living in Canada at that time.”

Caller: “Are you calling me a LIAR?”

Me: “Well, considering that Dr. [Name] is my dad, I think I’ll take my word over yours.”

Caller: “Well, then we can’t do business. No, we can’t do any business. Goodbye!” *hangs up*

Me: “Wow…”