Dear Doctor…

Before she left for her mini vacation without her parents, the kid got sick… nothing some medication couldn’t fix but we had to deal with it on a Saturday morning. Thankfully, her pediatrician has Saturday morning hours which is wonderful and one of the reasons why we picked them. However, the pediatrician we saw is one reason why I’m thinking of leaving… This was our second time dealing with him in an acute setting and I was again reminded of why I’m getting my Masters in Health Policy to try to change how healthcare is delivered.

You know what? I have to admit that most of the doctors we’ve met while dealing with my husband’s injury have been amazing. I don’t know why but the difference in care and treatment is astounding… maybe they have the luxury of time since they aren’t primary care physicians. I don’t know… but still, that shouldn’t matter.

A letter to the pediatrician who treated my kid…

Dear Dr.,

I know you don’t remember me. I was just one of the many moms you saw yesterday morning. But I’m important as was my child. She was sick. She had an infection. One that was easily treatable and yet, if left untreated, could become life threatening. Yes, that is slightly melodramatic but it’s true. I realize that I’m not a doctor. I know that I haven’t had the training that you have had. But you know what? I know my kid. And you don’t. Nor did you once try to talk to her about how she was feeling. And you barely spoke to me about it. I had to tell you. I had to get you to listen. And yet, you still didn’t. You didn’t believe me since kids her age do not get what we thought she had… oh wait, they do. A large percentage don’t and there is a difference between that statement and the one you had in your head.

Did you ask my daughter how she was feeling? No.
Did you ask her if anything on her body hurt? No.
Did you talk to her about her worries? No. (FYI, even at the young age of five, she was worried. a lot. so I made her feel better since you didn’t.)
Did you ask her anything? NO.

You just wanted to see the test results which weren’t available. So you sent us home. Without anything. No medication. No discussion on pain medication I could give her now. No discussion on what I could do to make her feel comfortable now. NOTHING. You ignored us as we left and instead typed in her chart. What did you type? Who knows since you discussed none of it with us.

Instead, you were focused on getting to the next patient so you could see someone else and then go home. We saw you for five minutes. FIVE MINUTES. My daughter, who had an infection, was seen by a pediatrician in the office we visit for five minutes. And it took me another hour and a half to push the test results and the antibiotic prescription so she could start treatment quickly since she had been dealing with it for a night. FYI, the nurse was FANTASTIC. As was the pharmacist and the techs in the pharmacy. Oh, the woman who checked us in at the office was also wonderful as were the ladies working in the lab that morning. Everyone but you, Mr. I’m so much more important than everyone else including my patients.

As a mom, I was enraged and dumbfounded. To the point of not being able to speak. So yes, shame on me for not pushing you to do more. Shame on me for not speaking up more since I should have… Although once we left, I went into action and I got things done.

As someone who uses the healthcare system, I was disappointed and not surprised. No, not surprised at all. However, I was disappointed that as a pediatrician or even a doctor, you obviously don’t listen to your patients. Why do you practice medicine then? I know it can’t really be for the money since let’s face it, primary care physicians do not get paid that well. So why do you do it? I don’t get it. Nor do I want you treating my child again. So we will be looking elsewhere since I know, that if something happens on a Saturday, we may see you again.

Please know that you need to change your thought process. Listen to your patient and LISTEN to the people they bring with them especially if that person is a parent. I was right. You were wrong. And you wasted MY time and MY money.

BUT you did make me realize why I need to keep pushing for change. So thank you for that… and thank you for finally prescribing medication for my daughter since she is now feeling much better.


This mom and healthcare user

2 thoughts on “Dear Doctor…

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