Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Why I Like Our Pediatrician

So, the last 2 times we've been to the pediatrician's office, we had to endure sitting in a waiting room with other families who were eating. On one occasion, the family was eating Chik-Fil-A (a Southern fast food icon, deliciously fried in, you guessed it, peanut oil) all spread out on the benches like a picnic at the park. The second occasion involved lots of little ziploc baggies of snacks in the hands of wandering toddlers.

First of all--who actually WANTS to consume anything at a doctor's office, let alone a pediatrician's office? Isn't that just gross? When we go, we try not to let the children touch anything, let alone eat anything.

Then there's the whole Deadly Food Allergy thing. You know, a minor detail.

Each time this happened, we mentioned it to the nurse we saw, but forgot to mention it to the doctor.

So I wrote a letter to our favorite doctor asking them to enforce their "No Food And Drink" policy, which is, in my opinion, already clearly posted in all of the waiting areas. Evidently, some folks can't read.

Today I received a handwritten note from the doctor explaining that they had also noticed this trend and that they had already been working on new signage for the waiting rooms. She included a copy of the new sign, which reads:

"DANGER! Your children's snacks could be life threatening to our many patients with food allergies. . . . Please...No food in the waiting room!"

AND the doc included stickers for both of my kids--Batman for Ryan and Winnie the Pooh for Morgan--which indicates that someone obviously figured out which kids lived in this house, their ages, genders and therefore possible sticker interests.

How cool is that?


Jason Dixon said...

It seems sometimes the little touches are the clinchers for who gets my biz. And it's just great to see some real thought go into a response like that!

Rational Jenn said...

It was very satisfying. They had already recognized there was a problem and were working on it. They acknowledged my concern (and rightness!) and provided me with a copy of what they had done. They cared enough to send the kids a little something, too.

This is a doctor who is thinking of her business as a BUSINESS and knows that she can earn repeat customers through good service. And "service" encompasses non-medical areas, too. This is a large practice--several locations, about a dozen docs, 3 or 4 nurse practitioners. This is a competitive area. Medical knowledge is a must, of course, but it's these "little touches" as you point out that keep people like me happy and returning. It's nice that they care enough beyond just what kind of insurance we carry.

I'm also proud of me because this is something I might have let go by at one point in my life. But I'm speaking up more often lately and getting results (yes! I'm building my army of minions!). Go me.