Thursday, August 6, 2015

Extended Waiting Periods

I was pondering how valuable time is especially when it comes to medical appointments and having to wait. Keeping a very organized calendar, I know that our doctor's offices make reminders by calling, text messages and/or email messages with our appointment information; even asking to arrive fifteen to thirty minutes early for any paperwork or just to complete the check in process. So, why then do we often find ourselves sitting in the waiting area fifteen minutes, twenty minutes or even thirty minutes after our scheduled appointment time? Only then to be called back to a room and wait again for another fifteen minutes, thirty minutes or even forty-five minutes; what is the value of our time?

Having to go to the different doctors at various locations with all my little's and even myself with my knee, I see notices stating..."If you arrive 10 minutes after your scheduled appointment time, your appointment may be reschedule and you may not been seen today". What about when the doctor is running late? What are our choices? To Wait or Reschedule, not very favorable. Usually no apologies are made by the staff; however, each time you see the door open and the nurse comes to call in the next patient, you hope it is you. Finally, when your name is called, though some frustration has set in, you are just so happy to get to the next step. The happiness only lasts for so long as it becomes deflated because you are in the abyss of the unknown of not knowing how much longer? Where is the doctor, actually? 

Finally the doctor arrives to your room, a quick sorry or thank you for being patient is expressed but that is not helping your six year old who has been repeatedly asking "am I getting a shot and how much longer"? Your crying toddlers who want the same toy or ate the snacks you packed, your baby who just does not want to be there or you at your appointment sitting waiting, reading magazines, checking social media, texting, somewhat enjoying the time but knowing there is a lot of other things that can be done than sitting and waiting.  All of this in an 8X8 room, for an appointment that you know will take less than twenty minutes total. Wasted Time!

I do understand emergencies do happen or someone needed more time than what was scheduled thus causing days schedule to go out of whack but truly it is not okay for anyone. Especially the extended waiting created because the office just plain overscheduled. I know nothing will change, some offices are better than others. I now, for the last couple of years, I do tend to try to make appointments, right before lunch and right after lunch, I found that the schedule starts new right after lunch and right before lunch the staff wants to eat or take a break.

In the end, everyone's time is valuable and there is no price to be had on missed out time. Time is something you are unable to get back. There is no time machine, only the time we have in this minute and hopefully the next as you just never know what is planned in your path of LIFE! We live today in a world of fast paced everything, fast-food restaurants on every corner, smart phones, Skype, Face-Time, social media of every kind, whatever it is, please remember to take a minute or a few when your waiting to know through the quiet or the chaos to enjoy a minute without technology (maybe easier said than done). No matter what your time is just as valuable as your doctors!

Old Time, that greatest and longest established spinner of all!.... his factory is a secret place, his work is noiseless, and his hands are mutes. ~Charles Dickens


Until Next Time...Make it A Great Day!

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