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Question
Posted by: Purple | 2010/09/10

Doctors receptionists power trips

Hi,

I have just phoned the doctor to book an appointment. No, miss stroppy receptionist feels I shouldn''t have an appointment. My goodness gracious.

I''m rather upset. I''ve met some lovely doctors receptionists, but in my experience, most are hired because their personalities are similar to that of a pit bull (or am I being unfair to pitbulls?).

I shall certainly be informing the doctor and if he''s not prepared to speak to Miss Snippy, I shall be changing doctors. I''m not a child and I will not have some half educated person who thinks she is a doctor telling me whether I can have an appointment or not - not based on availability - but because in her opinion I don''t need to see the specialist - never mind that he discussed this precise issue with me last time I was there and told me to make an appintment immediately if this happens.

Why do most receptionists feel the need to flex some sort of non existent power? Do they feel frustrated in their jobs, do they feel like dogs bodies and being rude to patients is their only way of feeling good about themselves?

Grrrrrrrrrr.

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Yes, definitely you are being unfair to pit bulls, some of whom are charming at least some of the time. No receptionist is qualified to decide whether or not you "need" an appointment. And she may need to be reminded of that, or asked to send a copy of her clinical qualifications and CV to you.
Maybe many receptionists don't actually respect their own job, or recognize what they CAN do to be useful.
"Receptionist" is mistaken - it doesn't matter what she is studying, or why she is working as a receptionist - what matters is what she is and is not qualified to do, and how well she does or does not skillfully deal with people. If she went to a restaurant and found the food dreadful, would she be comcenred about what the chef was studying or why he was working as a chef ? Sadly, Rec is demonstrating the problem, rather than shedding light on it.
Maybe your doc needs a system where you first make an appointment to discuss your problems in detail with the Receptionist, who will then decide if you need to see the doc for a second opinion ?

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9
Our users say:
Posted by: Sheila | 2010/09/14

Hi Purple,

I totally agree with you. I phoned the Gynae''s office to make an appointment. I had been bleeding for 2 weeks, but was not yet in any pain. I thought something was up and needed an appointment closer than the 4 weeks away one she could give me. I took the appointment anyway, as I thought she did have some sort of education. Three days later I was in casualty and needed an emergency operation as I had an ectopic pregnancy, my fallopian tube had burst and I had a litre of blood in my abdomen.

Thanks receptionist!

By the way, what job do you do?

Reply to Sheila
Posted by: Purple | 2010/09/10

Happiness, that was the point I was trying to make, I just didn''t do it very well and it sounded awful (I was so cross when I typed this).

I am going to take it up with the doctor, I firmly informed the receptinist I would have an appointment thank you very much, and she then gave me one while sniffilly telling me she didn''t think it was appropriate.

Yes, I am also tired of being spoken to like I am a twit when I make appointments. My worst though is when you go to a practice for the first time, as sick as a dog and the receptionist yells at your for doing some inconsequential thing wrong on a form (like a letter touching in the wrong block), I once lost it and yelled at the receptionst that I was sick and she should take her bad day out on someone else.

Most receptionists are indeed lovely but the ones at doctors rooms do seem to get special training in nastiness.

Reply to Purple
Posted by: Happiness | 2010/09/10

I agree with Purple, some receptionists really go overboard. And it might have something to do with the lack of education ha ha ha! They speak to people like they are retards. One shouldn''t take the job they really hate &  make us pay the price.

Reply to Happiness
Posted by: Ja | 2010/09/10

just want to add - yes discuss this with the doctor - she has no right to decline an appointment - that is just not on. It''s your human right...

Reply to Ja
Posted by: Ja | 2010/09/10

ok people don''t get snippy :-)

anyway, I have always found doctors receptionist rather intimidating. (no lack of education - but everyone makes bad judgements sometimes)

Reply to Ja
Posted by: PUrple | 2010/09/10

I''m judging her by her lack of ability to do the job.

There was an initial valid question she asked me which I answered and that led her to form a non-medical opinion.

For someone who isn''t judging others, you are forming awfully quick opionions yourselves.

Reply to PUrple
Posted by: Receptionist | 2010/09/10

I agree with G, however you dont seem to be a too pleasant person yourself, "  I will not have some half educated person who thinks she is a doctor telling me whether I can have an appointment or not "  You dont know the circumstances behind why she is a receptionist. I am a receptionist and study part time, I dont think I know it all but would like to consider myself educated. You should''nt judge somebody by the type of job they have.

Reply to Receptionist
Posted by: G | 2010/09/10

Why did you not just make an appointment without allowing her to become involved with your case and a decision whether you need an appointment or not.

Reply to G
Posted by: cybershrink | 2010/09/10

Yes, definitely you are being unfair to pit bulls, some of whom are charming at least some of the time. No receptionist is qualified to decide whether or not you "need" an appointment. And she may need to be reminded of that, or asked to send a copy of her clinical qualifications and CV to you.
Maybe many receptionists don't actually respect their own job, or recognize what they CAN do to be useful.
"Receptionist" is mistaken - it doesn't matter what she is studying, or why she is working as a receptionist - what matters is what she is and is not qualified to do, and how well she does or does not skillfully deal with people. If she went to a restaurant and found the food dreadful, would she be comcenred about what the chef was studying or why he was working as a chef ? Sadly, Rec is demonstrating the problem, rather than shedding light on it.
Maybe your doc needs a system where you first make an appointment to discuss your problems in detail with the Receptionist, who will then decide if you need to see the doc for a second opinion ?

Reply to cybershrink

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