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What Do You Do When Your Physicians Office Is Not Returning Your Phone Calls?


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Does anyone have any suggestions as to what to do if your physicians office is not returning your phone calls?


Let me preface this by saying that I do not call excessively and usually when I call I am calling because the physician has specifically asked me to call back about test results etc. I am always very pleasant and polite when I call and I always thank the staff for their time.


I am not in a situation where I can change specialists due to my insurance. I feel like the lack of communication is starting to have a negative impact on my care at this point. Not to mention that it stresses me out when I have to sit around for weeks on end waiting for a call back which only makes my pots worse. :( I have been to the point of tears recently due to the frustration surrounding this. At a loss as to what to do.... Does anyone have any suggestions or has anyone else encountered this if so how did you handle it?

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Can you locate the doctors email address? By googling and searching on the internet, I could find most of my son's doctors email addresses and that was how I communicated with his doctors. This way, I got straight through to the doctor and no miscommunications took place.

Christy

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I suggest leaving only 2 business days go by before calling again. You're not being a pest, you're being a patient if you call back after that time. If it is a large practice/office, you might try asking to speak to the office manager. If it's just a doc and an assistant, maybe sending a fax explaining that you've made several calls and haven't heard back and to pkease call.

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I vote for an email address. Your message cannot get misplaced unless the doctor is too busy to answer email.

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CHRISTYD: I have tired the electronic route too. I have not had any better luck with that route. I have not emailed the doctor directly (I have a feeling this would not go over well with my doctor) but their office does have a way you can email through your chart which I have tried in the past.


Bigskyfam: I agree it's very unprofessional. I have never even called and requested that the physician call me. A call back from the nurse with information is all I have ever needed. At this particular office the nurse checks with the physician on test results questions etc and then the nurse calls the patient back. I can not even get my phone call returned now when I call for something simple like trying to schedule a future appointment.


As far as I know I have not ever done anything to upset anyone at the office to where they would want to purposely ignore me. I have copies of all of my records from my appointments and the physician has always stated in his notes that I am a very pleasant patient.


SarahA33: This particular doctor is specialist and unfortunately the office is not even located in the same state that I live in. If it was I would go by the office. As far as I know the doctors at this practice are not accessible via an after hours number.


I did not receive a call back today either. Maybe tomorrow, hopefully tomorrow?... This has become a pattern. When I first starting seeing this physician I never had problems and calls were always returned promptly. However, lately this has become a trend. I am not an unreasonable person and I know they are busy but it's not fair to do this to patients. I think the physician is an excellent doctor and his nurse seems very nice the few times I have actually been able to talk to her but the lack of return calls is so frustrating. I'm not trying to be a pest to them but from a patient prospective it is so frustrating when your call don't get returned or don't get returned in a timely manner. When it gets to the point where the patient ends up in tears out of frustration it has gone to far.


Thanks for all the suggestions everyone
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Goaway,

I just want to say that I did recently have this issue with one of my docs. It is a fairly large practice and I asked to speak to the office manager. I ended up with my docs "new" assistant calling and bringing me in for an appt that week. My doc told me what was going on...okd assistant was out on FMLA and the transition was being mismanaged for a time. When my doc realized it, she and the doc that shares an assistant with her put their feet down and made the office manager get a temp from an agency. She was so embarrassed it had happened and thanked me for being one of a handful of patients that pursued getting through to her and raising a flag that something was wrong. I know we hope everyone in a doctor's office is diligent, but just like any business, things can go wrong and managers don't know what they don't know.

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Hi all,

I struggle with this from time to time since I have 8 billion doctors, and on occasion, one or more of them run offices that are slightly less organized than I'd like. In those instances, I become "The Woman On The Phone Who Won't Go Away"...my entire family is in the medical profession, and they all advised me early on to be a powerful advocate for myself right out of the gate. If I feel like I'm not getting appropriate, timely responses, I simply refuse to hang up until someone gets on the phone and tells me something. I've been put on hold for as much as 30 minutes, I've been asked to call back, etc. But if it gets to the point where i need information, and they have it and can't/won't give it to me, I simply stay put. Eventually, it becomes easier to help me than avoid me. I'm never rude, just firm and assertive....at the end of the day, I don't really care if they "like" me or not....if they were doing their jobs properly, they wouldn't have to deal with my reaction. I suggest you become "That Other Woman Who Won't Go Away"....good luck!

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