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Rant re: chairs in the doctors office



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OK so I'm doing 6 months of pre-surgery insurance mandated medical weight management.

Month 1 visit: Met the doctor, did the weigh in, complained about the chairs that have arms and they brought me a different chair. We talked about the chair throughout the visit and how I did't fit in the chair with arms because it was digging into my legs, squeezing my butt, generally uncomfortable.

Month 2 visit (this last week): They weigh me in, take me to the room, same chairs, same issues. I ask for a different chair, but the nurse says she would have to go to a different department to find one. Essentially, it was inconvenient. I'm like... ... ... Well, I'm not sitting there. So she has me on the table, finishes up with me and I'm waiting for the doctor to show up. Perched on that table like a potato with dangling legs.

So I start pacing around the room like a caged elephant. I consider pulling out the stirrups and laying back on the table, but decide against that. I straighten the frame on the wall, then read the motivational poster. Its about customer service. "Grow your world around your customers and your customers will grown around you"

First of all, why is a motivational poster concerning customer service in a patient room? Seems more appropriate for some back office space. Second, their customer service sucks! The chairs are an issue I've already complained about and now I've been told that my request is too inconvenient to bother. Third, I'm a customer who is seeing this particular doctor specifically because I am NOT trying to "grow" anymore. This lady is trying to lose weight.

So doctor comes in and I'm ready to fight this fight.

I tell her I want a different chair. She's surprised and shocked that they didn't get me one! (Guess who is not surprised even a little.) I say, these chairs are anti-fat and don't work for fat people. Isn't a large part of her business dealing with and seeing fat patients? I mean, most of America is fat people, so chances are you've got fat people coming in and being uncomfortable in these chairs. She bristles when I refer to myself as a "fat person." She says, "Don't say that, don't say you're fat" and she winces and tries to brush it off. I'm like, look lady, I'm fat. It's like, specifically why I see you. It's a requirement that I come and see you before I have this surgery that is ONLY FOR FAT PEOPLE. Like, WTF.

I tell her that this poster is bananas. That they're doing a terrible job with customer service. She tries to swerve that as well - "This isn't my office, I'm not in charge of this, this isn't the only place I see patients, I will email the office manager, etc" I'm like, "You're the one I come to see. If not you, then who? Who do I talk to about this? Can we write this down in my chart that these chairs don't work and I want a chair without arms every time I come in here? Give me the office managers name and email, I will write to them."

My takeaways:

- This doctor is fat-phobic AF

- This office puts any pretty picture in a frame without reading / comprehending the intent of said poster.

- This office does not care about patient comfort.

- I feel really good for speaking up, making a clear argument, not backing down, and eventually getting a chair without arms.

- I feel good about saying all this stuff not only to the doctor, but to the med student who was shadowing her.

- It's hard, but important to make my needs a priority. And I'm sure they talked **** after, but I honestly don't care.

- Basically, this visit was A LOT and weird and I'm still processing it out.

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That does give you an indication of their priorities! The practice my wife and I used was proud of the extensive collection of bariatric furniture they had, and also the fat suit that they used in training new staff so that they have some feel for what their patients were going through living as a fattie. Maybe your guys are trying to "shrink" their world around their customers to encourage them to shrink along with it. Probably not the best approach, but it does give you some idea of what you will be putting up with over the next few months. Maybe consider a change in practice to one who is more patient focused? Even our local hospital has a decent selection of fat chairs in their various outpatient clinics (just for the general population, not just in the bariatric clinic.)

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Is the place a bariatric office or just a general doctor’s
Office?

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@nyjenn it’s both. It’s a mixed use office with many doctors seeing patients.

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@rickm ... you’d have employees “dress up” in a fat suit? This is confusing to me.

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The only time that I can vividly remember getting ticked off about the chair arm thing was when I went to Stanford to see the Neurosurgeon in 2017 I remember complaining about their chairs lol. It was sooooo uncomfortable! I was 370-ish pounds at the time and you have to fill out a bunch of paperwork and then wait for like 30-40 minutes to see the doctor and meanwhile they have these really crappy chairs and if you actually want to be comfortable you have to go sit in the hall where they have couches, but chance not hearing your name called. Needless to say I stuck it out and was just irritated the whole time lol

I was lucky enough with all my other doctors offices, the hospital where I live, and the bariatric doc's office that they all have a mix of armed and unarmed chairs.

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@NovaLuna Its crazy - It seems like we're just expected to grin and bear it. Don't kick up a fuss, expect to be treated badly, expect your needs will not be met. Like when the doctors ask you to undress and wear those crappy paper gowns / shorts / tops and they only come in a size Medium. Like.... Really?

My game plan going forward is to speak up. I'm not embarrassed to ask for what I need.

simpsons.gif

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Posted (edited)

4 hours ago, MarigoldSky said:

@NovaLuna Its crazy - It seems like we're just expected to grin and bear it. Don't kick up a fuss, expect to be treated badly, expect your needs will not be met. Like when the doctors ask you to undress and wear those crappy paper gowns / shorts / tops and they only come in a size Medium. Like.... Really?

My game plan going forward is to speak up. I'm not embarrassed to ask for what I need.

simpsons.gif

That's a HUGE pet peeve for me when they hand you one of those dinky little hospital gowns! I always look at the person like they're the stupidest person in the world. I do try to be polite when requesting a bigger gown though just so that I get my way with little complaint. They once told me to just wear two because they couldn't track down a larger size... I was like "I can't even get the damn thing all the way up my arms and you expect me to wear TWO?!"

giphy.gif

Needless to say it took them about 30 minutes to track down a plus size gown so I could do my damn X-Rays lol. It's ridiculous since most women are not tiny and NEED those bigger sized gowns so it's incredibly stupid to seemingly only stock the tiny ass ones that barely anyone fits into!

Sorry lol You found a sore spot there!

Edited by NovaLuna
spelling error

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I just want to stand and applaud you, MarigoldSky! Way to make your voice heard! Good luck on your journey!

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