When my grandmother used to tell me that I did not know how to be poor, I responded that I am not poor, I am just broke; but now I know that grandma was right: I do not know how to be poor or broke. I am old.
I remember many, many years ago, even if I never liked or cared to go to doctors’ offices, doctors used to be more educated, more caring, more respectful and more polite toward their patients; and unlike today, treated their patients as if they were human beings.
Yes, I know, there are exceptions — after all, every rule has its exception — but unfortunately those exceptions show up less frequently than we would want.
Let me be clear: in all fairness I know that it is not always the doctor’s fault; it is the world we live in, and sometimes on the scale of fairness, zero is the best number I can see.
In the old days when doctors retired, moved out of town or relocated to another city or even to another office in the same city, they notified the patients and either let them know where they were going or pretended they were retiring so the patient would not know that he or she was fired.
Today, a few months after the corporate office removes a doctor from its payroll, they notify the patients, but patients and doctors do not even get to say goodbye to each other, nor do patients get to show some kind of gratitude to their docs for taking care of their illness, even if the corporate office only allowed doctors to spend twenty minutes or less with each patient.
I had an appointment with my doctor, but when they called to confirm my appointment they notified me that MY doctor no longer was my doctor and that he has left the city for good. “Your new doctor is now Dr. So and so, and please don’t ask me how to spell her name or how to pronounce it because I do not know,” explained the cold voice of the office employee that handles these calls.
My doctor was well gone by the time that mechanical telephone operator told me that I had a new doctor, a female nonetheless with a name that neither one of us could pronounce or spell.
In my day when a doctor was retiring, moving out of town or for any other reason not going to be our doctor any longer, the patient was notified with enough time to either buy a going-away gift or at least send (or give) a “thank you” card for the care they had received, whether it was always 5 minutes too short or often 15 minutes longer than expected. It was just because he was our doctor.
Nowadays when a person, for whatever reason, goes to an emergency room and they ask who the primary physician is, one would have to say “it used to be doctor so and so, but I don’t know who my doctor may be today;” and that is the honest to God truth.
The problem is that either I am too old or I hate to be treated like a fool; I don’t like when people are not honest with me and they think I am mentally off and they can feed me some cockamamie lie and I am going to believe it.
Back in July of last year I had a very bad experience with the Judicial Executive Assistant for Judge Eric Goodman, and even if I know that the JEA are at-will employees, I called the Court Administrator to relate my experience in Judge Goodman’s chambers because I know how the Goodman’s raised their family and I was under the impression that he would not tolerate any rudeness under his jurisdiction; the Court Administrator emailed me and told me “My contact information is below. I can give you a call tomorrow.” But she neglected to tell me what year that “tomorrow” would be; hopefully I will hear from her by the end of this year. If not, I will be asking her every year, in what year that “tomorrow” will be.
The same happened with a lady at the Regional Transportation Commission and I tried unsuccessfully to reach the Media Contact as always, when some one get to a halfway decent position, right away they surround themselves with people that can keep them out of the spotlight because they become very important and very busy.
The assistant to the assistant of the assistant told me that the lady in question will get back to me “as soon as she gets a free moment,” but the assistant to the assistant of the assistant never told me what year she will get that free moment, so I will keep waiting until the government of Cuba changes and she is not “too busy or too important” because I am a very patient person.
I am glad I called the RTC to offer something that could be profitable to them, and not to ask for anything.
My name is Rolando Larraz, and as always, I approved this column.
Rolando Larraz is Editor in Chief of the Las Vegas Tribune. His column appears weekly in this newspaper. To contact Rolando Larraz, email him at: Rlarraz@lasvegastribune.com or at 702-272-4634.