You mean I have to do it again?
I am in search of an endocrinologist and I made a phone call to a local diabetes center this afternoon to make an appointment.
When the receptionist answered, I explained to her that I had just moved to the area and that I was looking for a new endocrinologist, and I had been referred to the clinic by someone else and was wondering if they were accepting new patients.
The receptionist then asked me, “Are you a diabetic?”
Now, in hindsight I realize the woman was probably wondering if I was calling on behalf of a child or just myself, but it is still a strange question to hear someone ask you after you said you are looking for an endocrinologist. Of course I have diabetes, I thought!
After giving her all my contact information and how long I had had diabetes, she said she would call me back with an appointment time.
Now, this next part I should have realized I couldn’t get away with, but bear with me. You see, I don’t have a primary care physician yet, but I thought perhaps my old endocrinologist would work as a referral. Apparently not.
When the receptionist called me back, she said that I need a primary care physician to make the referral. I asked her if an old doctor could make the referral. She said no. When I asked why, she said, and I quote:
“You have to be diagnosed with diabetes.”
“I already am a diabetic,” I said.
“I know that,” she replied. She then went on to explain that if I was ever diagnosed with something else they would need to have a local doctor they could speak with to discuss treatments.
That is a logical explanation. I completely understand why I would need a local doctor and assumed that this would be the case. I’m frustrated that I have to do that, only because I rarely get sick and haven’t visited a primary care doctor in years, but I understand why they need to have someone on file.
But the “you need to be diagnosed” response? Oh please. You can do better than that.
Oh the things people think they can get away with saying…