Monday, August 21, 2006

Shopping Good Health

I feel like today, I made a smart decision. It was the day of my yearly mammogram. This is always a nerve-wracking day for me. My appointment was for 2:15. Like a good girl, I arrived 15 minutes early, so that I could fill out paperwork, etc. But when I arrived, the office was bursting at the seams.

The waiting patients were squirming, drumming their fingers, and otherwise looking angry and impatient. I asked around. Turns out there was a good hour's wait! After being told at the window that they were way behind because they were short-staffed, I asked if I would be seen within the hour. No one could assure me that I could. In fact, when I looked at the list, I noticed five other people signed up for 2:15, too.

Then the woman at the window brightened--"Oh, you're next" she said. I looked. I was not next, I was three people away from being called--just to register, not for the mammogram. "Sorry," I told the lady at the desk. I'll have to pass. This puts me way behind schedule." And so, I left.

Forgetting for a moment about the inconvenience to my schedule, and the poor scheduling and the bad business practices, what concerned me was something far more important. I didn't want my mammogram performed by someone operating under the pressure of an out-of-control day. When my mammogram films are read, I want them read not in the crush of overscheduling, but with due consideration.

So I walked out. Sure, I'm as impatient as anyone. Too many doctors overschedule, presumably to deal with no-shows. My rule of thumb is to wait a half hour and then to walk, out of simple scheduling problems. Sure, I get angry when the medical profession implies that their time is more important than your time. But this was a quality control issue. Don't you think?

2 Comments:

Blogger tizzie said...

Nice blog, B.J.!

5:57 AM, August 22, 2006  
Blogger Allison said...

Wow...great blog! I will be sure to read it often.

This particular blog made me wonder how many women walk out on their mammograms and are frustrated to the point that they don't reschedule...how tragic is that?!

Keep on blogging :)

Allie

6:43 AM, August 22, 2006  

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