I wrote previously about our experience with a horrible anesthesiologist at Geri's dental appointment. A few people have since told me I should contact the hospital to complain. I wanted everyone to know that I have and I wanted you to know that I was VERY happy with how it was handled. Well, at least so far.
On Friday, one of the nurses from Saint Francis Medical Center called to see how Geri was doing and ask how our experience had been. I told her that the nursing staff was awesome, the dentist was great, but I had a terrible experience with the anesthesiologist. She was very concerned and told me she would pass it on to her supervisor.
The supervisor, Kelly, called me within about 45 minutes to find out what happened. I explained the whole situation and I could tell she took it very seriously. She agreed that his statements had been unacceptable, that his treatment of us had been bad and that something needed to be done. She was pretty awesome - I liked her a lot. At one point she said, "Wow, it's as if he was daring you to get mad at him!" and at another point she referred to him by an unflattering name I won't repeat. I didn't say it first! Turns out, she has a son who has a hearing impairment so she understands about how you have to fight for your child's care a lot of times. She was totally receptive when I explained the impact Geri's adoption has on her response to hospitals and awakening from anesthesia. Overall, I just got the very clear message that she understood, agreed with my concerns, and wanted to see something done about it.
She explained that she would pass my concerns to the doc who is in charge of managing all of the surgical doctors. She was writing it up as a formal complaint, and the doc supervisor will likely meet with the anesthesiologist to reprimand him. She asked me at one point "What would you like us to do, to make you feel better?" and I said "I don't want him fired or anything, and I honestly don't think talking to him will change his crummy attitude, but I want my complaint to go up the chain so that, if other parents have a problem it's known to his supervisors. I want this on the radar so that if he keeps acting like this with other parents then maybe someday it will cost him his hospital privileges. Oh, and if we ever have surgery at this hospital again I DON'T want him in the OR. I never want to see this guy again!"
She said that she would make sure my complaint went all the way up, she will be calling to follow up, and if I ever come in with Geri again and he turns up as her anesthesiologist I am to call her and she will fix it. She said no way would I ever be expected to have him as my daughter's anesthesiologist again. That made me feel good, because I'm sure we'll be doing sedated dental exams for a long time!
All in all, I'm happy to report that my complaint was taken seriously and I feel very good about how it's being handled. Good job, SFMC!! You rock, Kelly!
By the way, I will go on ahead and throw this guy's name out there. Dr. Rafael. He's an anesthesiologist in Colorado Springs and he sucks!!! I know this may not help much, since you don't really choose an anesthesiologist - they just get assigned to you, but I thought I'd get that out there. Who knows, maybe it will help someone in some way.