05 August 2009

Adventures at the Lab Today

My apologies for those of you who have already seen this on Ravelry. This is an open letter I posted on an "open letters" thread on Rav earlier today after I went to the lab at work to get a blood draw done.

Dear Phlebotomist:

I hope you don’t honestly think you can say what you said to me and think that I won’t be going to someone to make a formal complaint.

Because any time someone comes to a waiting room and calls “Jin?” and waits for me, I won’t respond. Because sometimes some people call first names. So thought perhaps you were calling for Jim or perhaps Jen. Or, you know, maybe someone whose last name was Jin. But when you called again and no one stepped forward, I sighed and thought maybe it was me you were calling for. When I asked, “Jung,” had you replied with, “Yes, I’m sorry,” or even just “Yes,” I would have been happy.

But instead, when your mouth opened what came out was, “Jin, Jung, however y’all say it.”

First. It’s four letters. And it’s pretty phonetic. Korean is pretty nice that way. Second, don’t try to be cute with me in front of an entire waiting room full of people. Third, just don’t.

When I stopped dead in my tracks, looked you in the eye, and said, “Excuse me? However Y’ALL say it?” that was your cue to look contrite and apologise. Instead, you decided to avoid eye contact and mumble some excuse about “I meant ‘y’all’ as a general term, not as a particular group of people.”

What outrages me more than the slap in the face of your general attitude is that fact that I came to you in my white lab coat and with my hospital ID and office keys jangling around my neck. So it should have been MORE than evident to you that I was an employee. And this is how you treated me. How in the fuck do you treat our regular off-the-street patients??????

Also, you should know that I’m not going to your supervisor. I’m going straight to the lab business manager. The guy who follows the money and signs off on the budgets. Perks of working on THIS side of the hospital.

Have a great day!!!!
Later, I spoke to the business manager of the lab.

Here’s how the conversation went (after I described to him the event in question):

Him: Was she wearing her name card?
Me: Yes, but it was turned around. I asked the receptionist her name, though, and she said it was [name deleted].
Him: Let me see if I can describe her. Is she on the shorter side?
Me: Yes.
Him: Does she have shoulder-length hair?
Me: Yes.
Him: Is her hair mostly silver-streaked with a little bit of black?
Me: Yes.
Him: Was she wearing a blue tunic?
Me: Yes.
Him: Okay, I know who she is.
Me: And I can also tell you which station she uses.
Him: It’s okay. I know which person we’re talking about.

I got the distinct feeling he knew all too well which person this was. I got the full speech, “On behalf of the department, I apologise for any embarrassment this caused you. I want to ensure you that this is not the level of professionalism we expect from our employees. We appreciate the diversity of ALL of our patients…” You could definitely tell that the business side of him was coming out.

He told me that the first thing he would be doing tomorrow morning is addressing this issue with both Ms. Phlebotomist AND her supervisor.

Sad thing is… I gave her an out. Had she apologised or showed ANY contrition or remorse at that point, NONE of this would have happened, and I told him that, too.

I also told my mom that from now on when I go to the work lab for blood draws, I'm requesting that I not have that particular phlebotomist do the draw. I don't need the people with the pointy needles who are pissed at me poking me.

This incident still has me rattled (obviously not as much as it did when it happened - I was literally shaking right after it happened), but I'm more concerned about taking action to ensure that she doesn't treat patients that way ever again.

1 comment:

  1. WTF? Good for you for going right to the top. That just ain't right.