False assumptions

A few weeks ago, I scheduled a physical with a local doctor. I had made appointments in the past with him but only for sick visits. His secretary first offered me a 5 o'clock time slot, which I had to decline because it would mean my youngest would be home without anyone else there until at least 5:15. So one week later, she had a 2:45 available. I took it. Today the office called to confirm the appointment. The woman on the phone casually said, "blood will be drawn, so you have to have fasted for at least 6 hours."
Say WHAT? No one had told me that when they scheduled the appointment. When an appointment that require fasting is scheduled, in my experience, the person is reminded of that fact and usually offered a morning appointment. In fact, whenever my children had needed the full blood test, the doctors have either offered to schedule the full appointment for the morning or to allow the child to come in just for the blood work in the morning.

The office people were not at all contrite. They take it as a given that physicals entail such blood tests and so assume that all patients would know this. Hello? I had never had a physical with this doctor in the past. And, I can assure you, that not all doctors take the full battery of blood tests at each checkup. I told the office woman that I wanted to speak to the doctor. But I didn't trust her to convey the message properly. Since I was going out anyway, I dropped into the doctor's office. I waited to see him and stressed the fact that they had not told me about fasting until today. They should not schedule such appointments for afternoons without warning people in advance. He did not wish to concede that his office person had erred. But he was willing to do what I had suggested myself, namely to split the checkup and the blood work. That way the appointment would remain at the same time, and I can come in on another morning for the fasting blood test. You would think this is some amazing idea given how unacceptable the office staff found it. If they had only done their job properly in the first place, the split would not have been necessary.
I just fasted yesterday for Asara BeTeves and do not want to have 2 fast days within 3 days, thank you very much.


miriamp said…
I have NEVER been told to fast for ANY blood work save the standard pregnancy 1 hr GTT, and even that depends on the office, as my current ob/gyn office doesn't require fasting for it. So what have I not been tested for that I should have?

Asking to delay the blood work shouldn't require pulling teeth, but I am glad that you got the Dr. to agree to it.
Ariella said…
Not all blood tests require fasting. But I am familiar with this type of test only because my children have taken fasting blood tests when the doctor wanted to ascertain the levels of sugars and cholesterol. But they don't do this every check up. At a regular check up, they just get a finger prick.

Really, this is the first time I have heard of such a blood test being considered so standard at a check up that the person who made the appointment didn't even bother to mention that fasting was required.
Anonymous said…
nice post. thanks.

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