The Dermatologist Will Determine That You Need Thicker Skin

, , , , | Healthy | January 12, 2020

(My doctor’s office is small, with only one dermatologist, a physician assistant, and a nurse practitioner. The doctor and nurse practitioner see daily, while the PA is only here Tuesdays and Thursdays. Even so, our schedule stays booked, and new patients have been calling all through the month to get on the schedule.)

Me: “Thank you for calling [Office]; how can I help you?”

Patient: “If I walk in there today, can I be seen by the doctor?”

Me: “I’m afraid not. The doctor is out on vacation until the week after next, and our nurse practitioner has no openings currently.”

Patient: “Well, can I get on the schedule for this week?”

Me: “Sir, it’s Friday. We don’t have any openings today.”

Patient: “What about next week?”

Me: “We don’t have any then, either, because we’re only open Monday, Thursday, and Friday next week, due to New Year’s Eve and Day.”

Patient: “Really? You can’t just nudge someone for me?”

Me: “We don’t do that, sir. You can call each day to see if an appointment is available if you like, but I can’t promise we’ll have an opening for you.”

Patient: “Well, what’s your next available appointment?”

Me: “For the doctor, mid-February. To see the PA or nurse practitioner, it’ll be mid-January.”

Patient: “That’s too long! I have really good insurance! You’re sure there’s nothing at all?”

Me: *checks schedule, just in case, though I have looked at it extensively by this point* “No, sir, nothing has opened up. I can set you for January 14th with our PA, if you’d like.”

Patient: “I can’t believe this! What’s the point of having good insurance if you’re not going to fit me in?”

Me: “We only have one provider here today, and there’s only so many people she can see. The same goes for next week, as well.”

Patient: “So knock someone!”

Me: “I’m not going to do that, sir.”

Patient: “UGH! Forget this!”

(He called back forty minutes later to have a similar conversation with my coworker and then threw a large fit that she didn’t have anything until the end of January due to the influx of calls. The weird part is that there’s another dermatology office in the same city, and another in the next city 20 minutes away, so he had options.)

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