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Doctor shortage a problem already and will get worse

Oct 8, 2013 - Lynette McIntyre, Riverton

Editor:

I believe that we have a very serious problem in Fremont County concerning individuals getting into see a physician. With several doctors now absent or planning to leave, all physicians currently are "full" and rarely taking any new patients.

Also, for a lot of past patients of doctors who have left, the records were missing in action when they were transferred to a new doctor. I have found this scenario to be true with my son and my significant other. The new doctors who did receive client records of transfer often are declining service if you have not been in their office before. They say they simply are not taking any new patients -- even if your records are at their office.

My son was in a predicament where he obtained a concussion at work and declined going to the hospital on their dime. After two days off, he needed a doctor's note to return to work. Had he known this, he would have taken them up on the emergency room offer. I had to call the doctor to find out that his medical records had never arrived there. I told him that I filled out a transfer form and I turned it in with my daughter's and mine. They had no record of his records ever having arrived there but had my daughter's. They finally did get him in so he could get the note that he needed. Recently my daughter tried again for her annual physical and was asked if she was a new patient. She told him that she had never been in yet, but her records were transferred a long time ago when they were accepting new patients. She was told that it didn't matter, they are just so booked up that they cannot accept anyone who hasn't been in before.

I am sure a lot of people in town are running into this problem or soon will be. Does anyone have any suggestions or comments on this dilemma?

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