dear primary care physician…

I know, I know…I’ve been slacking.  It’s summer break, kids are out of school and life is incredibly busy.  I’ve had zero time, take a look at my bikini line if you don’t believe me.  Nonetheless, here I am.

So…I found 4 weird lumps in my neck and made the mistake of searching my symptoms on Google and WebMd, which is never a good idea.  You could self diagnose leukemia from a yeast infection.   I’m getting ready to go see my new doctor.  This is as close as I come to actual prevention,  because I’m much better at procrastinating until the situation hits full blown crisis management.

I’m sure it’s nothing, but it made me realize that I have been sitting on an amazing writing opportunity.  The following is a letter to my previous doctor of about 30 years.  Every single bit of it is 100% true, and I’m willing to bet an ovary if you live in Baltimore County that at least a few of you will know exactly who I’m referring to.  I couldn’t make this shit up.

************************

Dear Primary Care Physician Using An Old Pretzel Container As A Tip Jar On The Reception Desk,

If you travel to the town of Annoying, then make a left and travel another 235 miles to the town of Apoplectic Frustration, you will find me – the one with the face the color of an angry thermometer – sitting in your gloriously gray and mauve waiting room.  Although I find it customary to be punctual, you find it customary to make me wait no less than 40 minutes past my scheduled appointment time, every time.  On the off chance I am 10 minutes late however, I am told that I have missed my appointment and must reschedule.  Sorry!

The obvious joy and “down time” that the luxury of waiting affords me is only further enhanced by the calming effects of the Zen-like atmosphere you have so carefully assembled.

Let’s see, there’s the dusty plastic ficus tree, the peeling floral wallpaper border that was discontinued from Kmart in 1985, and the single brass lamp that came from the table between yours and your wife’s twin beds when she redecorated 30 years ago. These elements combined with the permeating smells of old urine and overcooked microwave burritos bring me great tranquility, and really help me to return to center.

As if this was not enough, you have strategically added a television disguised as a 1980’s Ms. Pac Man machine.

I deduced that this “television” was a “gift” from Diflucan (Fluconazole Injection) tm, primarily from the logo imprinted on the side, but also due to the fact that it does not have actual channels in which to change the endless loop of overly zealous pharmaceutical representatives.

No worries though, when one tires of that, we are happy to educate/brainwash ourselves with the only literature you find suitable such as The Watchtower and other pamphlets devoted solely to becoming a Jehovah’s Witness.  This graciously saves us the trouble of having to make a choice.

I have also noticed/been smacked in the face with your recent decision to start coloring your hair.   Your new late-onset-midlife-crisis-bright-copper-with-a-slight-hint-of-magenta-white-roots-comb-over is freakish, and in no way lends itself to your credibility as a medical professional.

Might I also bring to your attention that contrary to popular belief, when a patient finally sits down in your office, 40 minutes past their appointment time and address a few issues, such as a current bout of bronchitis, a required physical and EKG for an upcoming surgery, and a prescription refill, it is not considered professional that you make an analogy about “going to the mechanic and asking to have your oil changed, brakes checked and a tune up all for the same price.”

You might want to cover your head when you inform them that they will need to schedule another appointment to address these issues separately.

Now listen closely, you might want to grab a pen and paper for this one.

When said patient returns the following week for the 4 minute EKG and physical, it may be considered gauche in some circles to state that the $70 insurance pays for this procedure is “shit”, and that in all fairness you are forced to charge extra.  It is equally insulting when the receptionist, who also happens to be your pill-popping hollow-eyed son, hands over the bill.

For.  Two.  Hundred.  And.  Eighty.  Dollars.

Oblivious to my frenetic animosity, Captain Percocet asks me when I would like to schedule my next appointment.  He then hands me a fuzzy black and white Xerox copy of an article pertaining to the rising costs of malpractice insurance, and very Vanna Whiteishly motions towards the painfully obvious barrel shaped plastic pretzel container, with a sloppy, hand written sign that reads TIPS.

I just thought I’d bring these little nuances to your attention before I find another Doctor, and also tell you to go fuck yourself.

Blessings,

Tracy

15 replies

  1. G-H-E-T-T-O, ghetto! That guy has insurance fraud written all over him.

    Good plan getting a new doctor. I don’t know what it is with doctors thinking their time is so much more valuable.

  2. I’m wondering if he is an actual Jehovah’s Witness. Bearing in mind its the entire basis of the reading literature available it would suggest so. Having been one for what was, thankfully, a very short while I am curious as to how unsupported his patients are when they want certain types of contraception or need a blood transfusion both of which are against his faith. The literature alone would be enough for me to hot foot it out of there and find another doctor.

    As for the tip jar, rolled about laughing when I read that and more so when I got to the not so discreet attempt to garner more tips for his malpractice insurance. Seriously mate, if you want to be a dcotor its your responsibility to pay for that not your patients.

  3. I was going to say that I haven’t found one yet that I would tip but I forgot about the very handsome spanish one at the fast clinic that we took the grandkids too. Be still my beating heart. That man looked eactly like the dog wisperer and when he spoke I know my jaw dropped. Bad grammie, bad grammie. I would tip him.

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