A wry look at busy, busy doctors.

(This was previously published in a print mag which has since gone under. Please bow your heads for a moment of silence. Ok. You may read now. :-))

Does your doctor measure up (down)?

Becoming a rotten doctor is an art. Specific behaviours must be learned and practised in order to join the infamous ranks of the truly terrible. Following are some of the important skills which should be mastered by would-be wretched physicians.

1) Always Keep ‘Em Waiting

Under no circumstances should you ever see your patients at the exact time of their appointment. Keep them waiting at least half an hour – one hour is ideal. The longer they have to wait, the more intimidated they’ll be: look how busy you are!

There are several ways this important goal can be achieved:

a) Overbooking
b) Arriving late in the morning and/or after lunch
c) Catching up on your sleep between patients
d) Chatting on the phone with your spouse/investment broker

2) Be In a Rush!

When you do finally see a patient, you should seem to be in as big a hurry as possible. Act as though you might flee out the door at any second.

Learn to be abrupt! You’ll know you’re doing it right when, as you dismiss a patient, his/her jaw drops as if to say, “Already?!”

3) Never Remember Names

This is key. If patients think they’ve made an impression on you to the extent that you actually get their names straight, where will it lead? No, you are far too important for such frills.

4.) Never Smile

Smiling is for mere mortals. You have weighty preoccupations, and are much too concerned with problems outside of the examining cubicle to tinker with social amenities.

Also: Avoid eye contact.

5) Do Not Explain Medications

Certain patients are renowned for their curiosity. Brush aside their questions; you are the expert, only you know exactly what’s best for them, and only you need to know. Do not tolerate second-guessing.

6) Write Illegibly

Practise abominable handwriting. This will:

a) Keep pharmacists on their toes
b) Render your case notes unreadable by anyone other than yourself. You certainly wouldn’t want a patient to peek at them and learn something.

7) Exercise Inaccessibility

Why should you let patients bother you with their annoying complaints and questions? Set up a system of blocks – like a pyramidal fortress – as follows:

a) Receptionist (trained to take patients’ messages and pass them up to the secretary);
b) Secretary (preferably one who is trained not to return patients’ calls); and finally:
c) You (with your door closed)

8) Overwork Your Staff

Try to get away with the minimum amount of personnel that is possible. The object is to keep your staff chronically on the brink of a nervous breakdown. (This takes great skill, so be careful! You wouldn’t want to have to pay for their sick leave!)

It also helps if you remember to criticize staff efforts often, or, at the very least, never give praise.

And of course: Underpay.

Naturally, you will have some turnover of staff due to these measures, but that is a small sacrifice to make in order to instill unhappiness in your employees – whoever they may be – which is your goal.

By now you must realize that it takes much hard work and dedication to become a rotten doctor. Just remember: practice makes perfect. If you will diligently apply the techniques outlined above, you will surely succeed where many others have failed. Go for it!

8 thoughts on “A wry look at busy, busy doctors.

  1. Aww! I lucked into a good one; my daughter and her friends and I were among her very first patients. She’s so great – the antithesis of the description in this piece. *However* this *does* describe a neurologist I was once referred to. To a T. 😦 I will write about that one day!!


  2. thank goodness my doctor has not read this….well some of it…she has actually told me to make my appointments for around 1pm…after the lunch time rush. she smiles, she takes the time to talk to me about anything and everything. The Specialist I saw a couple of years ago re my thyroid was all of the above and more. 10 mins from time I went into see him and out Ipaying the bill and waiting for the receptionist to finish a long phone call. He never looked at me, my face, he dismissed me…made me feel like an idiot. put gunk all over my neck and pretended to use a scan on the neck. I walked out of that appointment so hurt and betrayed and $350 less in my bank account (aussie $$) I think i paid for his next trip overseas.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes I don’t get it either . No bed side manners. It’s like they think they are better than us. We do have one neuro surgeon here in Australia Charlie Teo who is really nice. He treats every patient with respect and as if they are family. But it’s rare. With all my conditions I have seen a few.

        Liked by 1 person

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