Health & Wellness

What are my rights as a patient? Doctor refused to see me

  • Last Updated:
  • May 25th, 2019 12:23 pm
[OP]
Member
User avatar
Jan 26, 2004
258 posts
51 upvotes
Georgetown

What are my rights as a patient? Doctor refused to see me

My 8 yr old was in too much pain so I called my Doctor's clinic to see if my doctor is in today and if she can see my daughter during her "walk in clinic" hours ( the doctor has 2 days in a week as walk in clinic) - the receptionist confirmed that doctor will be able to see me - only if I can reach the office by 6:30pm, since the doctor is here till 7pm (closing time of the clinic). I rushed from my work, picked-up my daughter and reached the clinic at 6:00 PM on the dot (30 mins before the deadline provided by receptionist and one hour before the walk in clinic closes).

Now : the receptionist changed her wordings, acted very unprofessionally and told me the doctor cannot see my daughter because I am too late. Even after confronting her that she gave me a different answer over the phone, the receptionist replied rudely "Doctor is leaving early today and they have there personal life too" - while my poor 8yr old is standing there, crying in pain. Even after requesting a few times I was not allowed to see the doctor and was told to go to another walk in clinic or go to emergency hospital.


can a doctor refuse to see you - even when they are open and have plenty of time?

Can they simply refuse a patient in cry pain because Doctor felt like going home early? I am wondering as a patient what are the patients rights? what does the law say? is there a complaint body for these type of slack/unprofessional behavior?
15 replies
Deal Fanatic
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Jul 17, 2008
9081 posts
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Can't answer your question, but provided you are a resident in your province, why not go to ER? If there would be something that can't wait, I usually go there.
Deal Guru
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Oct 5, 2008
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Toronto
take her to the ER or another walk in clinic.
Deal Fanatic
Nov 15, 2008
5289 posts
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If it's urgent the ER is always better because they can give you medication on the spot + a prescription, whereas the doctor can only give a prescription and then you are in a rush to fill it.
Member
Dec 12, 2005
398 posts
37 upvotes
Richmond
In BC, walk in clinics have a cap on how many patients they can see in a day. Not sure if it is the same in ON.
Deal Fanatic
Sep 16, 2004
8071 posts
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Toronto
Time to find another doctor.
Living in Georgetown you might have had better luck going to emergency.
When I lived in Brampton, had to go to emergency and decided to drive to Georgetown though it was longer than going local.
But once we got there, no wait time as the waiting room was empty.
Doctor on duty was able to see us immediately.
Sr. Member
Dec 29, 2012
748 posts
185 upvotes
Scarborough
Most times I get better treatment at the local walk-in clinic/s than with my family doctor, so I only go to him for annual checks and ongoing tests if required. Just because they hold your file, they think they're exclusive. I have a file opened at 3 walk-in clinics near home, call first then go to the one with the shortest wait time.
Deal Fanatic
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Jul 12, 2003
9927 posts
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Markham
IMO they have right not to see you. The Doctor has to leave early and/or the reception was not informed or she simply forgot. The Doctor may have things to do after work like all of us. Although the doctor maybe kind to see the last patient since you and your daughter is there already. This is a personal call by the Dr.

Also, if you think your Dr is so miserable, unprofessional and cold blood to see your sick child standing there and not treating her, time to think about change your family doctor.
Leave a feedback and review on the website about the poor attitude of the reception too.

I understand OP's frustration, after whole day of work, rush to pick up the daughter, rush to get to the the clinic on time and end up got denied at the door. Not a pleasant thing to feel for sure.
Last edited by MP3_SKY on May 17th, 2019 11:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Retired Forum Moderator February 2009 - June 2015
Deal Fanatic
May 14, 2009
5456 posts
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You can file a complaint with the CPSO.
Deal Addict
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Jul 4, 2006
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Every clinic has a cut off time for accepting walk in appointments at the end of the day.

But I do feel for you being in a not great situation - especially when the receptionist forgot or didn't know that the clinic was closing earlier that day.

The irony is that the more "urgent" you try to describe your situation, the better the argument is that you should call 911 or go to emergency.
Deal Guru
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Mar 31, 2008
10512 posts
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Toronto
Yupp.. clinics and private practices can 'refuse' Patients. It's like trying to get your car into service at a mechanic. Are you new to Canada?

Also, it's well known, yea, it sucks, but always be nice to the receptionist/admin at these places.

If that doesn't work.. it's the Emergency Room at a hospital.
Deal Guru
Jun 15, 2012
11504 posts
5573 upvotes
Southern Ontario
I understand your frustration being told one thing, preparing for it and only to be told something else when you arrive. However if your child is crying in pain, I personally would prefer taking mine to the ER in case further assessment is necessary. The community labs/imaging will be closed by then, were you expecting just a prescription?

You can make a complaint to the CPSO but it’ll likely go nowhere, only to hinder your relationship and push your need to find a new doctor.
Deal Addict
May 12, 2014
1875 posts
1292 upvotes
Montreal
mackey2001 wrote:
May 16th, 2019 6:29 pm
because Doctor felt like going home early?
But we don't know why the doctor went home early. Maybe he had a family emergency. Maybe he started feeling ill.

So no matter what regulations are passed, it's very possible that sometimes even if you show up in the middle of the day you won't be seen.

Of course that doesn't excuse rude behavior, and you may have a legitimate complaint on that front.
Deal Fanatic
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Sep 1, 2005
6796 posts
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Markham
This was the receptionist's fault and not the doctor IMO. She shouldn't have OK'd you without checking with the Dr. OP should have went to ER like others have said.

Your post is one week old. Did you try a bribe with ice cream first? Is the child OK? Was it an emergency?
We're all bozos on the bus until we find a way to express ourselves...

Failure is always an option...just not the preferred one!
[OP]
Member
User avatar
Jan 26, 2004
258 posts
51 upvotes
Georgetown
Update: I took my kid to another walk in clinic that night and got the right care. ( what a waste of time and so much stress).

Also I spoke to the doctor during my next visit . Doctor mentioned she wasnt aware of the situation and humbly apologized. Doctor also said that they have received a few complaints about the same receptionist and will speak to her. Hopefully this wont repeat.

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