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We Just Adjust Spines, Not Space-Time

, , , , , , , | Right | December 5, 2022

I work as an assistant in a chiropractor’s office. Part of my job is typical receptionist work, like answering phones, scheduling appointments, and taking payments.

We have three chiropractors who rotate days, so there is a minimum of two doctors on any given day. We break for lunch between 12:30 pm and 2:00 pm, but there are still assistants working during the break to man the phones and help patients who are checking in early.

One doctor tests positive for [Contagious Illness] during the end of the lunch break at 1:55 pm. He heads home, and the rest of the staff learn about this at 2:00 pm as some of his patients start checking in. I get tasked with trying to help the patients reschedule their appointments while also calling the rest of the appointments on his book to reschedule.

This particular patient comes in at 2:02 pm for his 2:30 pm appointment.

Me: “Hello, [Patient]. I’m sorry to inform you, but the doctor you’re seeing today has taken ill during lunch, and he will not be able to treat you today. I was just about to call you to get you rescheduled.”

Patient: “Seriously? This is the only time I have to make this appointment. I just called an hour ago to try and get in earlier.”

Me: “I apologize about that, I really do. I can try to schedule you with the other doctor we have in the office today, or I can schedule you on another day next week.”

Patient: “So, he’s going to be out all week? I can’t come back tomorrow?”

Me: “No, sir. His next available appointment will be next Monday.”

Patient: “This is really unprofessional, you know? Next time, you need to call me before I waste my time coming down here. You didn’t tell me that when I was on the phone with you trying to get in earlier.”

Me: “We found out he was ill two minutes ago. You are literally the first patient I’ve told this to.”

Patient: “I need earlier notice than that.”

I got him scheduled for the first available appointment after the chiropractor’s quarantine period, but he was very angry that I couldn’t see through time and space and predict this inconvenience. It was a… very rough first thirty minutes, going between rescheduling patients in front of me and trying to catch the ones just before they come in by phone.

Can See Your Bones, Can’t See Why You Need An X-Ray

, , , , , | Healthy | December 4, 2022

I’m in my early thirties. I’m having a lot of pain in my back with no known cause, so my doctor orders X-rays. The tech is positioning me on the table, which is causing very painful spasms.

Tech: “You’re here for a back X-ray?”

Me: “Yep.”

Tech: “Workout injury?”

Me: “No.”

Tech: “Fall recently?”

Me: “No.”

Tech: “Move the wrong way?”

Me: “No.”

Tech: “Pregnant?”

Me: “No.”

Tech: “Then why do you need an X-ray?”

Me: “To see why my back hurts!”

Tech: “No known reason?”

Me: “Correct. Can you please just take the X-rays? This position hurts!”

The tech makes a face but does what I ask.

A couple of minutes later…

Tech: “All done.”

I start to get up. The tech runs over and stands behind me.

Tech: “Sweetie, take your time getting up. Do you need help?”

Me: “…you saw something, didn’t you?”

Tech: “Oh, uh… I’m not allowed to discuss that. But seriously, let me help you up.”

Me: “Uh-huh. You definitely saw something.”

I was diagnosed with inflammatory arthritis in my back not long after.

It’s Breast Not To Make Things Worse

, , , , , , , | Healthy | November 28, 2022

I’m a new mom. My son wouldn’t breastfeed and I asked for help at the hospital. They asked what the problem was and whether there was any milk. I told them countless times that there was plenty of milk; my son just wasn’t capable of getting it out.

They decided that I should pump some to give to him.

Nurse: “Here: you put one cup on each breast and then just let the pump work. Don’t worry if there are only a few drops; we’ll give him a substitute if there isn’t enough. We only need a very small cup of milk for him.”

Me: “Don’t worry; I think it’ll be enough.”

Nurse: “I’ll prepare some substitute, just in case.”

We started the pump. However, the nurse did not show us how to stop it or say how much we should pump. My husband and I saw the bottle filling up, so eventually, my husband went to find the nurse.

She came back with a small cup of substitute milk.

Nurse: “Hello! How is it going?”

Me: “How long should I keep going?”

Nurse: “Oh, well, the more we get out, the better. We’ll give him this in the meantime.”

Me: “We might need a new bottle soon, then.”

Then, she actually looked down to see the milk. Her jaw dropped and her face went pale.

Nurse: “We won’t need this.”

She stopped the pumping and explained that she’d save the milk, in case it was needed later.

My milk production did cause problems. My son learned to drink properly, and he loved it overflowing — even when he was full, he would just drink and then spit the milk out, just to get the taste — so there was no problem there any longer. However, no protection helped against my occasional (more to say constant) flow of extra milk. I ended up walking around with cups on each breast, made to gather up the extra milk, and I had to empty them regularly throughout the day.

We also bought a new sheet for the bed so the milk wouldn’t seep through to the mattress. I ended up sleeping in puddles of milk, even though I had towels to suck it up. I even ended up in the hospital due to milk engorgement.

Me: “There is milk coming out all the time. How can some of it be stuck?”

Doctor: “Unfortunately, it happens. You should try to have your son drink more if possible.”

Me: “I’ve heard it helps to pump milk. Should I get a pump?”

Doctor: “Usually, I would say yes, but it has a tendency to make the production higher, and in your case, high production is what causes the problem.”

Since then, I’ve had countless people tell me I should give away all the milk I gather up, as there are so many who don’t make enough for their babies. At first, I was surprised the doctor hadn’t told me about it, but it became clearer when it turned out that such milk had to be pumped, not just gathered out of health regulations.

I explained this many times, but the typical conversation went like this:

Person: “Why do you have cups on your breasts?”

I’d explain my high milk production.

Person: “You should give it away; there are many less fortunate people who don’t get enough.”

Me: “I can’t. I have to pump it out, and that would cause my production to get even higher. I’ve already ended up in the hospital for it.”

Person: “I still think you should. There are so many who can’t get enough milk; you should help them since you don’t have problems with it.”

Me: “But I have problems. I just have a problem with too much milk, so I can’t risk getting even more.”

Person: “Look, there are many people who can’t get enough! You shouldn’t whine because you get a lot; that is a blessing!”

Even when I explain why it is a problem, they think I’m just whining about having too much, which I should apparently be happy about. They can come back when they’ve tried bathing in milk every night and ended up in the hospital for days with pain, for which the best treatment is a baby painfully sucking from the place that hurts.

We’re Just Glad She Isn’t Driving

, , , , , , , | Healthy | November 23, 2022

I work in customer service for a health insurance company that mainly administers benefits for Medicare and Medicaid populations. In my state, members who receive benefits through state Medicaid have access to medical transportation to and from medical appointments. Unless you have a certified disability or other specialized need, that medical transportation normally goes through regular cab companies.

A notable percentage of our Medicaid membership suffers from psychiatric illnesses and other behavioral health challenges, and because of this, getting cursed out and/or threatened is not uncommon. It’s the nature of the beast, and we’re all trained to understand that and not get frazzled or mirror their energies.

My specific job is to take escalated phone calls. This one happened recently.

Me: “Hello there, thank you for holding. How can I help you?”

Insert unhinged screaming, with no discernable words.

Me: “I can hear that you are clearly upset and that something is wrong, but I can’t understand what the exact issue is. Could you repeat yourself?”

There’s more unhinged screaming about seemingly nothing in particular, followed by:

Caller: “You dumb c***, I am former FBI, so GET AWAY FROM ME OR I’LL HAVE YOU ARRESTED!”

Me: “Ma’am, I work from home and can assure you that I am nowhere near you. Could you please fill me in on what the issue is?”

Caller: “I made a hurricane that destroyed the whole world! Do you really want me to do that again?!”

Me: “I certainly don’t, ma’am. I can help you, but I need to know what’s going on.”

Caller: “You’re parked outside my house!”

Me: “Again, ma’am, I am talking to you from home, and I am definitely not parked outside your house.”

Caller: “There’s a [Cab Company] car outside my house!”

Me: “Did you request a medical ride for today?”

There’s a pause before the caller responds in a surprised, chipper voice.

Caller: “Yes! I have to go to the pharmacy today!” *Click*

Yes, ma’am, you go get those meds.

You Can’t Pick Your Patients (‘s Noses)

, , , , | Healthy | November 19, 2022

I work on an ambulance. I had a patient call for a nosebleed, which stopped before we showed up.

Me: “Can you tell us what happened?”

Patient: “I picked my nose too much and it started bleeding. I want to go to the emergency room!”

They insisted on going, so we took them. They demanded that we drive with lights and sirens — emergency mode — to the hospital. When I told them we don’t do that for non-life-threatening situations, they threatened to call my supervisor and sue us for not treating them correctly.