By Wayne Harada
Have you played the waiting game in your doctor’s office?
Today’s topic has nothing to do witha show or an entertainer, or some form of entertainment.
It’s about going to your doctor’s office, only to sit and wait for 20 minutes or more, before finally getting to see him or her.
I’ve heard complaints from family and friends and that’s a red flag: everybody waits, even if you have an appointment time.
What’s up, doc?
Overbooking, causing the backup? Clock’s not working, so no one pays attention to the time?
The general scenario:
Your appointment is at 8:10 a.m., so you arrive five or 10 minutes earlier, depending on your commute. You make it there only to wait, anywhere from12 to 20 precious minutes, in the reception room. When your name is called, you are shown to the examining room, only to wait five or more minutes before the good doc enters.
Is it a practice to book two or three people per appointment time? Seems there are two or three people waiting, when you first arrive, and they methodically go into the chambers, while you wait your 20 minutes until being called.
I can understand the backup by 10:30 a.m., but early in the morning? What happens if you have a 4 p.m. slot? How many are ahead of you? How long is the wait?
I deliberately took a 1:30 p.m. appointment for another doctor, the first after his lunch hour, and I still had to wait. Twenty minutes in the reception room, another 8 to 10 minutes inside the examining room. Once, nearly an hours, since he was otherwise engaged in an unexpected surgery.
Since doctors commonly have four to six examination rooms, imagine the chain reaction: somebody else is waiting, waiting, waiting, too.
I’ve not had this kind of issue with a dental or eye visit, since there’s no intermediate waiting space, so the shuffle in and out is a lot easier and more efficient.
Have you had comparable experiences with your waiting game?
Doctors, tell us why. Please?
Patients, what’s your take on this? Do you deliberately go late, so you don’t want the extra long wait in the office? Do you simply grin and bear it? Have you switched doctors because of this?