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We have been in Roane County a little less than a year and have already had the unfortunate misfortune of having to use the medical services here.
I have found all of the physicians to be very attentive, concerned, professional and more than competent.
The problem comes in getting to see them. My family has three primary care doctors, two in the same practice and one in a completely different office.
I think the staff in both offices trained together because the attitude is the same — indifference.
After we sign in we wait — and wait — and wait. No one tells you why you are waiting. There are very few people waiting with you, and people are coming out.
Twenty minutes after your scheduled appointment and still no word. Forty minutes, then 50 minutes later, the nurse calls you and expects you to know to follow her.
I wish I could say this was a one time incident, but no — every single time there has been no communication with any of us in the lobby at either office.
Then we had experience with the ER at the hospital in Harriman.
All of the negative things we heard upon arriving here were true. It is interesting to note that in sight of each bed, there is a plaque that says the goal “is to provide excellent service.”
Unfortunately that does not include communication with the patient or the patient’s family. Four different visits and all the same — they put the patient in a bed and maybe 20-30 minutes later someone comes and says the doctor will be here when he can. Then you don’t see anyone else for another 40 minutes.
I think somewhere along the way, Roane County medical personnel have forgotten the simple rule of medical customer service — take care of the patient. We can wait — just tell us we haven’t been forgotten.
How would you like to be scared and sit somewhere for 30 minutes without anyone acknowledging that you even exist? Even if you don’t know anything — we can handle that a lot better than hearing nothing and being ignored.
Medical care is critical to the person asking for it, so be compassionate; it may not be serious to you but it is to us.
Help us keep our sanity (and tempers) in check by giving us regular updates at least every 20 minutes.
Just saying “I’m sorry for the wait, you’re still on the list,” would go a long way in our perception of the quality of care received.