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  1. #1
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    Default When you visit the doctor...

    I work in a medical office. I am curious about the following:

    When you go to the doctor's office...
    Do you expect to receive a reminder call the day before your appointment?

    Who is responsible for obtaining your referral from your PCP: you or your doctor's office?

    If you do not have your copay with you, do you expect to be seen and billed after the fact?

    If you are more than 15 minutes late, do you expect to be seen, even if there is a wait?
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  2. #2
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    I do not expect a reminder call the day before.

    As far as the refferals, depends on which doctor. I dont like handling it on my own personally though.

    I would expect NOT to be seen if I didnt have my co-pay, and there are signs saying that payment is due when services are rendered.

    I've never been 15 minutes late, but I would probably expect to be seen if I was.
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  3. #3
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    Jan. 17, 2008
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    New England
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    Default

    When you go to the doctor's office...
    Do you expect to receive a reminder call the day before your appointment?
    Its nice, but its MY appointment

    Who is responsible for obtaining your referral from your PCP: you or your doctor's office?
    I call the PCP and ask for the referral, they send it. My doc has never req'd one FOR me.

    If you do not have your copay with you, do you expect to be seen and billed after the fact?
    My doc charges an extra $10 if you dont pay the CP at the time of appt. I'd be upset if I was refused over $15 copay to be seen. Especially if it were a sick visit and not a check up

    If you are more than 15 minutes late, do you expect to be seen, even if there is a wait?

    Nope. Missed my first OB appt by 10 minutes due to traffic. I was PISSED (at myself!) that I had to reschedule. If everyone got away with being 10 minutes late, the last person to be seen would have to wait over an hour.



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr. 14, 2001
    Location
    Minnesota
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    18,908

    Default

    A reminder call is nice, but not required.

    Referrals are not required with my insurance.

    I cannot even imagine not having the copay with me. People do that?

    If over 15 minutes late, I'd expect to either be offered a slot later in the day (if available) or reschedule for a different day.



  5. #5
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    Oct. 16, 2008
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    Central Oklahoma
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Renn/aissance View Post
    Do you expect to receive a reminder call the day before your appointment?
    No. I do not expect to get a reminder, but it is to the Dr. office's advantage to reduce missed appointments.

    Quote Originally Posted by Renn/aissance View Post
    Who is responsible for obtaining your referral from your PCP: you or your doctor's office?
    Doctor's office - I expect that is part of the service provided by the office, and if they don't, everything else being equal, I will shop for another doctor. I don't have time to chase down paper work.

    Quote Originally Posted by Renn/aissance View Post
    If you do not have your copay with you, do you expect to be seen and billed after the fact?
    Never had this problem - nowadays they all take credit cards - but I guess I will expect to be billed later if I don't have my copay. Copay is only a small part of what the doctor's office will make - the majority is covered by the insurance.

    Quote Originally Posted by Renn/aissance View Post
    If you are more than 15 minutes late, do you expect to be seen, even if there is a wait?
    Never more than 15 minutes late, but yes, I expect to be seen, and expect a wait for my tardiness.



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep. 7, 2006
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    WNY
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    Default

    When you go to the doctor's office...
    Do you expect to receive a reminder call the day before your appointment?
    No.

    Who is responsible for obtaining your referral from your PCP: you or your doctor's office?
    My insurance does not require referrals, so n/a.

    If you do not have your copay with you, do you expect to be seen and billed after the fact?
    With my PCP, the copay is always a weird amount, so I check for my EOB online and mail the doctor a check as soon as I know what the copay will be.

    If you are more than 15 minutes late, do you expect to be seen, even if there is a wait?
    This hasn't happened to me, but I would be very apologetic and ask if they could fit me in or if it would be better for me to reschedule.
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  7. #7
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    Dec. 28, 2009
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    VA
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    2,389

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    A reminder letter, call or text are super helpful for yearly or biennial appointments. An appointment for tomorrow and the patient called today....I'd think a reminder wouldn't be necessary.


    I find that a referral from the doctors office goes more smoothly.


    Paying the co-pay up front is expected.


    If I was late, I would hope to be seen within a timely manner (30-60 wait).


    I worked as a receptionist at my cousin's doctors office. It gave me a healthy respect for the medical profession.



  8. #8
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    Feb. 23, 2005
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    Spotsylvania, VA
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    Quote Originally Posted by Renn/aissance View Post
    I work in a medical office. I am curious about the following:

    When you go to the doctor's office...
    Do you expect to receive a reminder call the day before your appointment?
    Yes because the 2 practices I have dealt with do it as a matter of course. I really don't need it

    Who is responsible for obtaining your referral from your PCP: you or your doctor's office?

    I am. My insurance specifies that I have to be seen by my PCP to get a referral, I can't just call and ask for one. No referral needed for a GYN appt.

    If you do not have your copay with you, do you expect to be seen and billed after the fact?

    The practices I have dealt with take credit cards. They do have a policy that payment is expected at time of service. I know that's the policy and plan ahead. Having dealt with the same two practices for years if I happened to arrive without my credit card I would expect them to see me. However if I was a new patient things might Be different

    If you are more than 15 minutes late, do you expect to be seen, even if there is a wait?

    Yes, this did happen to me once. I was very late for an appointment due to a storm. I had only been to that office once before and though I called to say I would be late they were pretty clear that the doctor would not be able to wait beyond his normal office hours. I made it just in time. I would expect the same with my regular doctor
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  9. #9
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    May. 15, 2006
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    Eastern WV Panhandle
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Renn/aissance View Post
    I work in a medical office. I am curious about the following:

    When you go to the doctor's office...
    Do you expect to receive a reminder call the day before your appointment?
    It's nice but not required. That said, both my dentist and veterinarian do it.

    Who is responsible for obtaining your referral from your PCP: you or your doctor's office?
    My PCP has always handled it when I ask.

    If you do not have your copay with you, do you expect to be seen and billed after the fact?
    I have a high-deductible catastrophic plan with a health savings account, so my copay is 100% until I reach my $5,000 annual deductible. Strangely enough no doctor's office has ever been able to quote me the full price of the office visit, so usually I end up paying $25 at the time, and I get billed for the rest a week or so later.

    If you are more than 15 minutes late, do you expect to be seen, even if there is a wait?
    It would be nice, but if I have to reschedule I would understand.



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug. 12, 2010
    Location
    Westford, Massachusetts
    Posts
    5,158

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Renn/aissance View Post
    I work in a medical office. I am curious about the following:

    When you go to the doctor's office...
    Do you expect to receive a reminder call the day before your appointment?

    Who is responsible for obtaining your referral from your PCP: you or your doctor's office?

    If you do not have your copay with you, do you expect to be seen and billed after the fact?

    If you are more than 15 minutes late, do you expect to be seen, even if there is a wait?

    I always receive the reminder calls, but I'd really rather not. I have the appointments on my calendar and the calls are annoying.

    I have a PPO and do not need referrals. I've never had a managed care plan, so I've no experience with referrals myself.

    I always have a copay available. I guess, if I didn't I'd expect to be seen and billed anyway only if it was very urgent/emergent. All of my providers say upfront that they expect the copay at the time of the visit.

    I do not expect to be seen if I am as late as 15 minutes, that's not fair to anyone. By the same token, I reserve the right to walk out AND get my copay back if *I* am not seen within 15-30 minutes of the original appointment time, barring an emergency that is obvious to all of us. I've done this. I cannot stand it when doctors overschedule, allow patients to run over their time, etc...and leave me sitting in the waiting room for a long period of time. I won't have it, my time is valuable too.



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct. 29, 2003
    Location
    Ocala, FL
    Posts
    1,931

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Renn/aissance View Post
    I work in a medical office. I am curious about the following:

    When you go to the doctor's office...
    Do you expect to receive a reminder call the day before your appointment? Most offices do this, but I do not rely on it - I keep my appointment on my wall calendar and my work email calendar so I will not forget. It can be good though - my husband always forgets his, so I can tell him the day before if we get a call about it!

    Who is responsible for obtaining your referral from your PCP: you or your doctor's office? I would say my doctor's office - they always do.

    If you do not have your copay with you, do you expect to be seen and billed after the fact? yes, I expect to be billed. That said, I always have my co-pay.

    If you are more than 15 minutes late, do you expect to be seen, even if there is a wait? no, but it is nice if they do! I try very hard not to be late.
    Answers bolded above.



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Nov. 13, 2002
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    3,979

    Default

    When you go to the doctor's office...
    Do you expect to receive a reminder call the day before your appointment?
    Don't expect and very few I use do it (except for when I have an in-office procedure scheduled)

    Who is responsible for obtaining your referral from your PCP: you or your doctor's office?
    I don't need a referral so don't know

    If you do not have your copay with you, do you expect to be seen and billed after the fact?
    I would not expect to be seen but most of my doctor's offices don't ask for the co-pay until I am done- although I see why they would ask for it first

    If you are more than 15 minutes late, do you expect to be seen, even if there is a wait?
    Depends on the doctor. I have very few doctors that don't make me wait at least 15 minutes and so would have a bit of a problem with the double standard and the implication that their time is that much more important than mine unless I was was always late and/or they were generally prompt.
    It was an issue once with a doctor that I am a long-standing patient of and that routinely makes me wait for anywhere from 15 minutes to an hour (15 and an hour only once -usually about 30 minutes), refusing to see me when I was 15-20 minutes late because of a problem in their parking garage. I pushed back on that because it was BS and she saw me. I was nice about it but firm since she is the most egregious of the docs I see about making we wait.
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  13. #13
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    Dec. 28, 2003
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    Canada where all hell has broke free
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    2,805

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Renn/aissance View Post
    I work in a medical office. I am curious about the following:

    When you go to the doctor's office...
    Do you expect to receive a reminder call the day before your appointment?
    No, but it is nice.

    Who is responsible for obtaining your referral from your PCP: you or your doctor's office?
    99% of the time the doctor does it here.

    If you do not have your copay with you, do you expect to be seen and billed after the fact?
    In Canada it is part of your health care plan, so you don't pay

    If you are more than 15 minutes late, do you expect to be seen, even if there is a wait?
    I have never been to the Dr.'s office and not had to wait. I have had them call and say they are running 1-2 hrs behind and could I come at X time. I am not sure what it would be like to have a doctor wait for me. lol
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  14. #14
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    Feb. 18, 2001
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    New York, NY
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    7,069

    Default

    My answers in bold.

    Quote Originally Posted by Renn/aissance View Post
    I work in a medical office. I am curious about the following:

    When you go to the doctor's office...
    Do you expect to receive a reminder call the day before your appointment? Yes, but I'm not upset if I don't receive one, as I typically keep a pretty thorough datebook.

    Who is responsible for obtaining your referral from your PCP: you or your doctor's office? Doctor's office

    If you do not have your copay with you, do you expect to be seen and billed after the fact? No

    If you are more than 15 minutes late, do you expect to be seen, even if there is a wait? No



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Feb. 6, 2007
    Posts
    640

    Default

    When you go to the doctor's office...
    Do you expect to receive a reminder call the day before your appointment?
    No, I don't expect it, but it is really helpful

    Who is responsible for obtaining your referral from your PCP: you or your doctor's office?
    Never had to deal with this, but I would expect the office to take care of it.

    If you do not have your copay with you, do you expect to be seen and billed after the fact?
    No. Who would show up without payment of some kind?

    If you are more than 15 minutes late, do you expect to be seen, even if there is a wait?
    I would like them to try. I understand it may not be possible, but I would be upset if they dismissed me out of hand without checking the schedule. I might expect to wait around until they can fit me in.
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  16. #16
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    Aug. 12, 2010
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    Westford, Massachusetts
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    My PCP is pretty good, I'm usually seen within 15 minutes of the appointment time. When there is an issue that will delay things, she comes out and explains...it's rare, something like "A patient came in who I need to admit to the hospital unexpectedly, I'll be with you as soon as I can". Fine, I'm also usually given the option to wait or reschedule.

    The pediatrician is horrible...they schedule appointments very tightly and a couple of the doctors in the practice cannot set limits with demanding parents who insist on talking and asking questions for an hour when they only had a 15 minute vaccination appointment scheduled. The former receptionist used to be good at pushing them along and keeping them on schedule, the current one is a whimp and won't go knock on the door and call them out to get them to their next appointment. Fortunately, the peds office is only a mile from my house, so I leave and reschedule when I see what's going on (I can often tell by who is on duty that day what the story is).



  17. #17
    Join Date
    May. 10, 2009
    Location
    NC piedmont
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    2,327

    Default

    When you go to the doctor's office...
    Do you expect to receive a reminder call the day before your appointment?

    Yes, if I made the appointment more than a couple weeks ago. I'm generally good at remembering things, but I'm not infallible and after an incident where my phone ate all my calendar entries, I was grateful that my Dr's office takes the time. One actually has an automated system so the receptionist isn't tied up, and you just press a button to confirm. Nice...and theyc all 2 days in advance so if someone cancels, they can call someone waiting on an appt rather than just have that person not show up and the appt not be filled.

    Who is responsible for obtaining your referral from your PCP: you or your doctor's office?

    Ultimately, you are. I worked member service for an insurance company and if the referral didn't get to us, ultimately, the patient was responsible for the bill or for getting the referral. We would call the PCP if time warranted. However, as a patient, if my PCP said they'd take care of it or the specialist said they'd call about it, I would hope it would be done.

    If you do not have your copay with you, do you expect to be seen and billed after the fact?

    It depends. If it's a routine check-up or will otherwise not harm the patient in any way if the appointment is delayed, then no. If it's a serious situation, then yes if, say, your child is vomiting and has severe abdominal pain, stopping at the ATM is the last thing on your mind, and the office should be understanding as it's a potential emergency or if waiting could harm the patient.

    If you are more than 15 minutes late, do you expect to be seen, even if there is a wait?

    Again, depends on the situation. As above, if it's a situation where the patient's condition could significantly deteriorate if not treated, then I'd expect them to see the doctor as soon as possible. OTOH, if it's for something like a physical or a cold, where waiting a few hours or a day wouldn't be harmful, it's unfair to expect others who have arrived on time to wait, or for the office staff who works hard all day to give up their lunch so the late person can be seen. If they want to wait until the last patient of the day has been seen, fine.

    OTOH, it would be nice to be notified if the office is running significantly behind. People leave work for appointments or may have other things scheduled, and if the office is way behind an hour before my appointment, then a heads-up would be nice. One time when I went in for a routine appointment that I had scheduled well in advance and shown up 10-15 minutes early for, they didn't call me until 15 minutes after my scheduled time (OK, I can deal with that; stuff happens, people get sick and take more time, etc.) Finally the nurse comes to get me, does weight/blood pressure/history/etc/etc/ and puts me in the exam room. 50 minutes later, I'm still there with no explanation, no "there was an emergency and the doctor will be with you shortly," no nothing. Meanwhile, I had scheduled at the time I had because I had a flight out of town for a wedding later in the day. Finally, I had to get up and leave and reschedule. I got no refund of my $25 copay, no apology, nothing. A quick phone call to inform me there was likely to be a significant delay would have been nice.



  18. #18
    Join Date
    Oct. 13, 2007
    Posts
    924

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    Quote Originally Posted by Renn/aissance View Post
    I work in a medical office. I am curious about the following:

    When you go to the doctor's office...
    Do you expect to receive a reminder call the day before your appointment?

    Depends. Some offices schedule months ahead. It's really easy to lose track of the appointment if it's made 6 months ago. Appointment I made three days ago? Nope.

    Who is responsible for obtaining your referral from your PCP: you or your doctor's office?

    When I was in a managed care program, I was. Only was a problem when my PCP wanted me to see a Derm for out of control poison ivy. He only referred to two Derms. I was told it would be 3 months. What I had to go through to be seen the next day was ridiculuous. If (ex) PCP had been willing to make a call and explain the severity, it would've gone smoother. Now, we're on a PPO, so no referrals.

    If you do not have your copay with you, do you expect to be seen and billed after the fact?

    In theory, yes. But for patients not on managed care, that number can be a moving target. We have a deductible, then a co-insurance amount. And the co-insurance amount is dependent on the re-imbursement schedule. I'm never asked to pay at the time (though I would if asked), and get billed after the insurance pays whatever it decides to pay.

    If you are more than 15 minutes late, do you expect to be seen, even if there is a wait ?

    Again, depends. If they've not yet seen the patients with appointments before mine, then yes. I would've been sitting there waiting anyway. If they're past my slot, no. But I have a huge pet peeve with offices that so over-schedule that they are chronically late. Same (ex) PCP, I would routinely wait an hour past my time. I mentioned to the doctor, and was rudely told that he had two emergencies that required hospital admits that day. I responded that I would understand if it wasn't that it happened every.single.time I was there. That was the last time I went to that PCP.
    Bolded answers above



  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jun. 24, 2005
    Posts
    595

    Default

    1) I expect a call the day before. Not because I require or need it, but it always happens so I've become accustomed to it.

    2) I don't need referrals with my plan so not sure.

    3) I expect to pay my co-pay when I leave, that day. I would not expect to be seen if I didn't have my co-pay with me.

    4) I'm never late, but if I were, I'd expect the doctor to make a reasonable attempt to accommodate me, because frankly, doctors have themselves been at least 15 minutes late for at least 75% of my visits. And the other 25% are when I book the first appointment of the morning. I don't mind the lateness because the trade-off is that I've found doctors who run late are also more willing to accommodate last-minute appointments for sudden illnesses. But since a very healthy percentage of the time I'm waiting 30-60 minutes or more, I'd expect to be accommodated if I were 15 minutes late (understanding I may be waiting a while if I'm the one who is late).



  20. #20
    Join Date
    Nov. 16, 2006
    Location
    NC
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    Quote Originally Posted by Renn/aissance View Post
    Do you expect to receive a reminder call the day before your appointment?
    I don't expect it but its nice.

    Quote Originally Posted by Renn/aissance View Post
    Who is responsible for obtaining your referral from your PCP: you or your doctor's office?
    My insurance company requires referrals. My PCP submits the referral to the insurance company and the ins. co. sends the referral letter to all three of us. The physician's office usually has the referral, but I always take a copy of mine, just in case.

    Quote Originally Posted by Renn/aissance View Post
    If you do not have your copay with you, do you expect to be seen and billed after the fact?
    No copays with my insurance, but I would never expect to be seen without it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Renn/aissance View Post
    If you are more than 15 minutes late, do you expect to be seen, even if there is a wait?
    I have never been late, but I would expect to be rescheduled later in the same day or another day.



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