24 hour clinic

Early this morning I walked into a 24 hour clinic to see if I could get some treatment. I found two ladies sitting on the visitors chairs drinking tea and watching TV. They greeted me then hesitated a bit before one of them mumbled something. When I asked what she said, “A dokotala kulibe” (the doctor is not in) was her mumbled reply because of the food in her mouth. Then both her and her companion continued to drink their breakfast and chat away. When asked what time the doctor would be in “Cha mma 8” (around 8). Looking inside the treatment room I saw no nurse and assumed she must be off too.

Two nights ago when I went to the same clinic I found a huge group of people waiting to be attended to. Reason? There was no doctor so someone had gone to pick him up in another part of town! No explanation or apologies from the receptionist, a different one from the ones I found today. People kept coming in and she just welcomed them as if nothing was wrong.

Need I say more

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3 Responses

  1. acacia says:

    yes i think you need to say more.
    is your issue the poor customer service exhibited by the two ladies, not considerately explaining the situation to you, or offering apologies… or is your issue the fact that the doctor was not in?
    there are multiple causal factors going on, poor salaries and poor motivation of reception staff, heavy workload for the doctor, lack of training in customer service, weak overall management of the clinic etc.
    but perhaps the biggest issue is the expectations of the patient… if this is a private clinic, who told you to expect a high quality service? perhaps you get what you pay for. and if this is a government clinic, the causal factors for this type of service go on and on…
    while a measure of responsibility must undoubtably be assumed by the clinic in question, you must also take responsiblity for making sure your expectations are realistic.
    need i say more.

  2. Selina says:

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. Bonita says:

    This one is to Acacia. The acacia tree, complemented by its beautiful yellow flowers has more feelings than you seem to portray yourself through your comment. Hospitals and staff are there to SERVE AND SAVE first and that is the bottomline. Issues of salaries, motivation, workload, though very important, should be secondary. To say the biggest issue is the patients’ expectations is to be callous and insensitive. Is there any justification in letting a 70+ year old man, suffering from a serious urinary tract problem, lie down in agony, groaning, from 7.00 pm to 8.00 am the next day because ‘a dokotala kulibe?’ What is unrealistic about going to hospital to seek assistance/relief at the time you need it? My mother died as a result of negligence and it has been traumatic for me. Four years on, I still think about her, how she suffered needlessly and especially how her life could have been saved if there were less acacias in this country.

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