The “you need to make an appointment” letters (recalls) print out too early. I mean stupid early
I have over 200 March letters that printed at the end of September and over 100 April letters that printed at the end of October; I can’t send them because we don’t have those schedules.
That is stupid enough, but there’s more!
Every day these letters print automatically. They are given to…whomever, to send out. There is no rhyme or reason for who does them on any given day.
That is idiotic too – no continuity of process/procedure
Ann has them today. She brings me 3 piles and says “I have February, March and April here”
I say “Well, give me the March and April; I’ll add them to the folders. The February letters can be checked and sent out. Chances are you won’t need to actually send any out.
Remember just a minute ago I told you they print out MONTHS in advance? The day that a schedule is published, I send the letters for that month out. The letters have been randomly printing for two months at that point and generally all of the kids that have a recall letter or reminder in the system have a letter already printed and in my folder for that month.
If there are any letters for December, January, or February, there is a good chance that they are for a follow-up of some kind and we made the appointment already
We have been trying to catch the kids that somehow seem to fall through the cracks by actually performing the check-out process. Although some of my co-workers don’t actually look at the provider’s note on the checkout screen, we have been able to schedule a fairly high percentage of the patients that need a follow-up or return visit.
Because of this, when I do the letters (the daily letters) it is rare that I have any that need to be mailed out.
So, she says, “well they printed so I am sending them. If ‘they’ didn’t want them sent, ‘they’ wouldn’t have printed them.”
There is so much wrong with that;
Lack of common sense (which as we all know is not common)
Lack of pride in your job
What about trying to improve your work place and the work flow?
Laziness. Is it so hard for you to spend 5 minutes looking to see if these kids really need an appointment?
She does have a semi-point though.
Sorta.”They” have no clue.
I have tried telling “them” what issues have come up regarding the letters. I do suppose that I can come off as a know-it-all. But, I don’t mean to.
I sit at my desk all day long quite often bored to tears. In order keep myself awake and alive (I have been tempted to saw at my wrists with a plastic knife that I stole from the break-room) I started exploring the new system.
I found the letters and had been using them for my doctor (we are each responsible for the mail and schedule of at least one physician) for almost a full year before “they” started to actually use this recall /letter system. I pulled the paper charts for my doc, checked each patient to see when their last physical was and created the recall request – basically I told the system when this child needed to come back.
Then I started manually printing the letters and mailing them. The doctor was busy, her schedule was full & her production percentages went up! Wow, could it possibly be because parents that don’t pay attention to when their kid needs well child visits have been told to make a damned appointment? Hmmmmmm. Please note that my co-workers were irritated by this.
So, “they” decided we all needed to use the letters and since I do know a little about them, I reported the many errors that I found;
– I was the person that told them that the address that the system was pulling into the letter for the child wasn’t necessarily the custodial parent’s address.
– I told them that we (the secretaries) were NOT creating recalls for every child at every visit. -“they” insisted that we were and I was mistaken.
– I explained to them that when the provider opened a chart, to document the visit within the electronic medical record, the system was automatically creating a recall for 1 year out – even if the child needed an appointment before one year (babies do!) or if the patient did not need a follow-up for that particular visit.
– I reminded them that since many of these parents have more than one child and they don’t know enough to know that little Salacacuji needs an appointment, sending a letter to them without mentioning Salacacuji is a waste of time and money. What makes you think that they know if/when any of their kids need an appointment?
– When they receive a letter without a child’s name on it, they won’t call. If they do happen to call, I will spend 20 minutes on the phone with them trying to figure out why a letter was sent and which child needs the appointment.
I think that because I have been the only person to say anything about this unprofessional mess and they never listened anyway, they have decided that this letter system is working well. They will be rolling it out to other practices soon.
So, basically Ann is going about it the wrong way and playing stupid about it. She is pulling the Allie “oh, I didn’t know”. You know damned well its bull crap.
Should I even mention that the address we have in our system probably isn’t correct, that they have moved twice since the last time they were here and that I will be opening all of this returned mail and noting “bad address” on the demographics page?
For crying out loud in church so the pastor stops preaching and everyone turns to look at you!