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The Wannabe Mayor And His Spokesperson, Unmasked

, , , , , | Healthy | August 14, 2021

A male patient and his girlfriend, both middle-aged, come into our clinic to check in for an appointment. The man says he is a new patient, so we have him fill out paperwork while he waits for his appointment. When they came in, they were not wearing masks. Even though restrictions in our state have loosened for masks, individual businesses still have a right to require masks upon entry. Regardless of the current restrictions or vaccination status, a health clinic that serves people sick with a number of contagious diseases would be a good place to wear a mask — or so you would think.

As the front desk receptionist, it is my job to inform people that we still require masks. To make these conversations more polite, I usually phrase it a different way.

Me: “Do you guys have masks with you, or do you need one?”

We have disposable masks available at the front door.

The girlfriend simply says, “No,” but neither of them makes a move to grab a mask when I point out our available stash. This is where I should insist, but I’m a shy twenty-one-year-old female and there are no other patients in the lobby, so I don’t push it. I figure the nurses will take care of it, and oh, boy, do they.

The provider that they are here to see is the sort that will take no substance from the cow’s behind. She is a great nurse practitioner that has been in the field for upwards of a decade. Her LPN (licensed practical nurse) — the one that brings patients back to rooms and gets them started — is equally so.

The LPN comes out and calls the man’s name. Both he and his girlfriend start to get up. 

LPN: “Do you guys have masks?”

Girlfriend: “No.”

The LPN grabs two from the box at the front door and extends them to the man and his girlfriend.

LPN: “You’ll have to wear one for the appointment.”

At this, they explode. 

Girlfriend: “Oh, no. We were told when we scheduled the appointment that masks were highly encouraged but not required. [Patient] won’t wear one.”

LPN: “Well, I can ask the provider if she would be okay with a face shield, but he’ll have to wear something.”

At no point in this conversation does the man, the actual patient, say anything. He just starts angrily pacing and indicating that he is leaving. After a few minutes, he does actually just walk out, leaving his girlfriend to fight his battle.

Girlfriend: “Whoever I talked to, that was the first question I asked: do we need to wear masks? I wouldn’t have scheduled the appointment if they were required. I was assured that they were not.”

Me: “Hm, that’s strange. Do you remember who you talked to? I will have to update them on our policy so they have the correct information.”

At this, the girlfriend sputters.

Girlfriend: “Well, I don’t remember who it was, but it wasn’t the person who scheduled us. It was a different person.”

I look to see who scheduled her appointment. It was someone in the billing department, which is strange because they don’t usually schedule appointments. I find out later that there was an issue with one of the regular schedulers and that the call was transferred incorrectly. No big deal.

The LPN goes to get the head nurse, which is the closest thing to a manager at our clinic. [Head Nurse] confirms the policy and reiterates that we can check with the provider, but that he will have to wear something during the appointment or he will not be seen. [Head Nurse] confirms with the provider that she will not see him without a mask. I believe her exact words are along the lines of, “He needs to put on his big boy pants and get over it. It’s a piece of cloth.”

The girlfriend just gets angrier.

Girlfriend: “You’re really not going to see him over this? Well, that sucks, because he hasn’t been to the doctor in over thirty years and he has diabetes. He’s going to lose his leg. He really needed this appointment.”

During her rant, I’m thinking to myself, “If he really needs this appointment, you would think he would suck it up and just wear the mask.”

Girlfriend: “When I scheduled the appointment, I told them he had two requirements. First, he wasn’t going to wear a mask. We were told that was fine. Second, he wasn’t going to let the doctor do certain tests. He didn’t want to be touched. He didn’t want a physical. He just wanted to be seen for diabetes.”

That would also be a problem because, as previously mentioned, the provider would not let that fly.

I’m still trying to remain as polite as possible.

Me: “I’m sorry, but that is our policy. I know it’s frustrating to be given wrong information, and I’ll try to make sure everyone in our clinic is aware of our policies when scheduling appointments in the future.”

After repeating what she had already said a couple more times, she left. I canceled the man’s appointment and put a BIG note in his chart about his unwillingness to wear a mask and about our current policy, just in case he tries to schedule again.

Here’s the kicker: I decided to Google this guy. He’s not technically a patient with us, so there’s no HIPAA violation. I started to type in his name, and wouldn’t ya know it, it auto-populated his last name followed by the city and state. Great, so this guy is someone important or had at least been in the news.

Well, it turns out that this guy ran for mayor a couple of years back. He was actually defeated by his opponent, which just so happened to be the son-in-law of one of the clinic’s providers. When I told the provider this, her reaction was priceless. “It’s THAT guy?!” Everyone in town was familiar with him and knew him as the resident a**hole.

I looked at his mayoral campaign site, and one of his talking points was concerning community health. Interesting. There was a blurb in there about needing to “listen to your body.” Very interesting, considering this guy apparently hasn’t been to the doctor in thirty years.

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Probably Don’t Have A Needle That Small Anyway

, , , | Right | August 10, 2021

I am a female, and I work in a day spa that is affiliated with a doctor’s office. We do medical massages here for people with chronic pain, fibromyalgia, muscular injuries, or if they just want to relax. In no way should that indicate anything shady, but there are always a few guys that will call and try to get something naughty. I guess that goes with the whole “massage” territory.

I get the following call from a persistent man.

Caller: “Hey, do y’all do guys’ massages?”

Me: *Spidey sense tingling* “How do you mean?”

Caller: “I mean, do y’all work on guys?”

Me: “Oh, sure, we do medical massages here, and we can work on men.”

Caller: “What do you mean, ‘medical massage’?”

Me: “I mean like if you have pain, or an injury, or you want to relax.”

Caller: “Why did you ask me what I meant before?”

Me: “Well, sometimes we get creepy guys calling in to see if we do erotic massage.”

Caller: “What’s erotic massage?”

Me: *Long pause* “You know, I’m not going to explain it to you. We just don’t do that here.”

Caller: “Why not?”

Me: “We’re a medical facility. We don’t do that.”

Caller: *Hangs up*

I thought that was the end of it. Most guys like this leave us alone after they figure out they’re not going to get what they want. But about twenty minutes later, I get another call.

Caller: “I want to talk to the massager!”

Me: “The massage therapist?” *Pauses* “Did you just call here?”

Caller: “I don’t want to talk to you! I want to talk to the person who does the massages!”

Me: “I’m not putting her on the phone, so you’ll have to deal with me.”

Caller: *Hangs up*

Then, fifteen minutes later:

Caller: “Hey, I need a massage.”

Me: “Hello? This is a medical massage facility. How can I help you?”

Caller: “Yeah, I have a medical problem.”

Me: *Knowing what’s coming and rolling my eyes* “What’s wrong?”

Caller: “I have a medical problem… in my penis area.”

Me: “I can’t help you with that. So sorry.”

Caller: “Why not?”

Me: “Because that is prostitution and that is illegal in this county.”

I hang up and tell my two therapists about what’s going on. One of them gives me an evil idea taken from a particular TV show, and I take notes. About two weeks later, I get yet another call.

Caller: “Hey, do y’all give guys’ massages?”

Me: *Playing innocent* “We give medical massages to all genders.”

Caller: “I have a medical problem. My penis is erect and needs a massage to relax it!”

Me: “Oh, dear! Well, I can reassure you, sir, that our medical office can definitely help your penis relax!”

I then launch into a spiel about how our medical office can do a procedure that involves using a needle to siphon the excess blood from the affected area.

Caller: *Very quietly* “Um, that won’t be necessary. The, um, problem went away on its own.” *Click*

We never got a call from him again.


This story is part of our Best Of August 2021 roundup!

Read the next Best Of August 2021 roundup story!

Read the Best Of August 2021 roundup!

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For The Record, This Is RIDICULOUS

, , , , , , | Healthy | August 10, 2021

I need the medical history of my vaccinations for education reasons. For a variety of other reasons, I do not have access to this yellow card that already has my history, so I call my doctor’s office. 

Me: “Hi, my name is [My Name]. I’m a patient of [Doctor]. I’m just calling to ask if I could get a copy of my vaccination history.”

Receptionist #1: “Your what?”

Me: “Oh, uh, my medical history?”

Receptionist #1: “Why do you need that?”

Me: “I began going to university and I need that information to prove I’ve been vaccinated. Can you guys possibly email it, or do I have to come down?”

Receptionist #1: “Uhhh, hold on.”

Eight minutes later:

Receptionist #1: “Do you have a fax machine?”

Me: “Unfortunately, no.”

Receptionist #1: “Then you have to come down to the office. It should be a quick visit.”

I make the appointment and go to their office. My mom and I already visited within the last few weeks. It was the start of a new year and insurance updating was already done. My mom got a misprint of her insurance card and went through a big hassle of getting their office to understand that the number on her card was right but the doctor’s name was wrong. I’m under her insurance as a dependent. After this confusion and debacle, the insurance company didn’t want to give my mom more than one properly fixed card, so she gave me the misprint.

I get to the office and they give me the usual forms to fill out and then ask for the card. I’m dealing with the person who I KNOW my mom dealt with last time, because he’s the only male receptionist among the other three women.

Me: “Just a reminder, the info on that card is inaccurate. The doctor’s name is [Doctor] but the number is right.”

Receptionist #2: “Uh-huh.”

Approximately ten minutes later:

Receptionist #2: “Miss! Your information is wrong!”

Me: “Yes, I know. I told you that already. It’s [proper information].”

He only looks from me to the card without even glancing at the computer.

Receptionist #2: “No, I don’t think so. This is wrong. Do you have another card?”

Me: “No, I do not. Is it possible for you to just pull up my file or my mom’s?”

Receptionist #2: “No. That’ll be $45 for today’s visit.”

Me: “What? I’m here to ask for my own medical history. Why is it so high?”

Receptionist #2: “Because you don’t have insurance.”

I was literally in this office a few weeks ago.

Me: “You know what? Can you please just pull up my mom’s file? Her name is [Mom]. We have the same insurance information and hers is the correct one; it’s the same number.”

The receptionist makes a weird face at me and then flicks his hand in an indication for me to go sit down.

About fifteen minutes later:

Receptionist #2: “Okay, fine. Your copay is just $15 dollars.”

I pay it and then go sit down to wait. Twenty minutes pass. I’m finally called in and they insist I be weighed. Disclaimer, I’m fat, and my weight hasn’t been under 180 pounds for years, and this office uses the old fashioned scale that has a weight and a balance slidey thing. As I’m being weighed, the nurse, who I’ve also seen for years, starts off on 160 before slowly moving the slider higher. Every time she does, she goes, “Oh, wow,” over and over again until we get to my actual weight. She then refuses to measure my height, despite that being the usual thing I’ve done for the last fifteen-plus years coming to this office.

I’m finally taken to a room and told to wait for the doctor. Ten or fifteen minutes later, someone finally comes in.

Nurse: “So, you’re here today to get your vaccine shots?”

Me: “What? No. I’m here for my vaccination history.”

Nurse: “Huh? Why didn’t you just call us?”

Me:I did. You guys told me that because I don’t have a fax machine that I had to come down.”

The nurse looks back and forth from her chart to me before eyeing me suspiciously.

Nurse: “And what do you need this information for?”

Me: “I got into university and they want my vaccine history.”

Nurse: “Oooookay… Wait here.”

She leaves and I wait another ten minutes or so before she returns.

Nurse: “Can you email us the form you have to fill out?”

Me: “Uhh, it’s not a proper form? I just log into the school’s website, and on my profile, it gives me a prompt to fill it out. I took pictures of all the questions on my phone here.”

I show her the pictures.

Nurse: “Hmm… Are you sure there’s no other form?”

Me: “Absolutely.”

This time, she doesn’t say anything before she leaves the room and then comes back a few minutes later.

Nurse: “Okay, can you email us these pictures?”

I get that done and wait another ten minutes. 

Nurse: “All right, so do you have the yellow card?”

Me: “No, I don’t have access to it.” 

Nurse: What?!

I’m surprised at the suddenly loud and very shocked tone of her voice. She’s been monotone and suspicious this whole time.

Me: “I don’t have access to it. Things are complicated at home and I don’t have access to it.”

Nurse: “Well, can’t you just… ask for it?”

Me: “No, I can’t. That’s why I’m here: because I already tried my other options.”

Nurse: “All right, well, that yellow card has your medical history on it that you need. Unless you have that card, we can’t let you see your file.”

Me: “You— Wait, what? I’m asking for my history, and you’re telling me you can’t give me my own history… unless I have my history.”

Nurse: “Yes, because you need that card.”

Me: “I. Don’t. Have. It. That’s why I’m here to ask you guys — my doctor’s office — for my history.”

Nurse: “We can’t do that.”

Me: “Well, if I can’t see it, then can you at least just tell me the information that I need? I sent you the pictures.”

Nurse: “Hmmm, no, I don’t think so. Well, thank you for visiting.”

She gestures for me to leave the room.

Me: “No. Absolutely not. You guys tried to make me pay a ridiculous amount for copay I’ve never paid before, you guys did make me pay for copay anyway, and you are trying to turn me away without helping me. I haven’t even seen the doctor yet. I’m not leaving until I see the doctor.”

The nurse suddenly looks panicked and tells me to wait longer before leaving. It’s about another ten or fifteen minutes before the doctor actually shows up. 

He basically sits in the office with me, holding my file, while I show and ask him the questions necessary and he tells me the dates. I’m still not allowed to see or hold my file. It comes to light there’s a vaccine shot that I actually need a renewal of, so that can also be done to get out of the way. He thanks me for coming into the office and tells me a nurse will help me with the vaccine.

Surprisingly, it doesn’t take long for her to show up, and it’s the same nurse I’ve been dealing with this whole time. The shot gets done and over with rather quickly, and then she just leaves the room. She hasn’t uttered a single word to me the whole time. I sit there a bit confused, waiting for further instructions. The nurse then pops her head through the doorway. 

Nurse:Ummm, you can leave now, y’know.”

I was honestly a bit more surprised at the sudden attitude change than I was angry. When I got to the car, the surprised feeling was gone and I was definitely more than dissatisfied with the supposed “quick visit” that lasted from 9:30 am to 11:50 am.

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An Ugly Side Of Society Has Been Unmasked, Part 13

, , , , , | Right | CREDIT: loleetahaze | August 5, 2021

I work in a customer care center.

Me: “Hello, this is [My Name] with scheduling. How may I help you?”

Customer: “Hey, do I need to wear a mask to be seen by a dermatologist?”

Me: “Yes, ma’am. Our protocol states that—”

Customer: “Well, I don’t need to wear one. This is a free country.”

Me: “This is a protocol by the government; you cannot be seen without a mask on.”

Customer: “You can’t tell me what to do! I will pass out if I have to wear a mask for more than fifteen minutes.”

I pull up the chart as I always do with anyone calling. This person is thirty-five with no health conditions.

Customer: “You might need to read up on some studies that say they are harmful.”

Me: “I am sorry you feel that way, ma’am, but as of right now, we are not allowed to—”

Customer: “You’re not allowed to tell me what to do! So, can I come to the appointment or not?”

Me: “Not without a mask, no.”

Customer: “F*** you, then. I’m not coming.”

But it doesn’t end there. She tries to come into the appointment with no mask, and the front desk won’t let her in. She starts cursing them out, gets in the car, and calls the customer care call center again. As my luck would have it, I pick up the call.

Me: “Hello, this—”

Customer: “Are all of you f****** r******d over there?”

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am?”

Customer: “I just came into my appointment and they won’t let me in.”

Me: “What seems to be the problem, ma’am?”

Customer: “They are making me wear a mask. You cannot make me do anything against my will! That is tyranny.”

Me: “Yes, but our protocols—”

Customer: “You know what? I’m going to call the department of health and call your superior. See how you like that, you little moron.”

Me: “It’s not a problem, ma’am. I will transfer you to the doctor’s office right now.”

I pulled up the chart, saw her preferred doctor, and transferred her. So, our dear patient discovered that if you play stupid games, you win stupid prizes. The doctor knew who she was, as the front desk had told him. He dropped her as his patient and barred her from the clinic.

Related:
An Ugly Side Of Society Has Been Unmasked, Part 12
An Ugly Side Of Society Has Been Unmasked, Part 11
An Ugly Side Of Society Has Been Unmasked, Part 10
An Ugly Side Of Society Has Been Unmasked, Part 9
An Ugly Side Of Society Has Been Unmasked, Part 8

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That Was Awfully Cheeky

, , , , , , , | Working | July 30, 2021

I pick up the phone to call a client and hit myself on the cheekbone.

Me: “I just hit myself in the face with the phone.”

Coworker: “That’s what you get for pushing its buttons!”

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