How To Bypass The Receptionist And Speak To The Doctor?

Are there any tricks to bypass the receptionist and get the doctor himself (or herself) on the phone? My folks have questions about health problems (and treatment) but are reluctant to call because they “always get the assistant.” Any tips?


  1. You don’t bypass the receptionist or the assistant. They are there to do a job and that is to assist the patient in getting information to the doctor and letting you know the doctors response, without the doctor having to make personal calls to everyone. If your parents have questions that they feel they need to speak only with the doctor about then they should schedule and appt and let the receptionist know that they will need extra time for their appt. Bring a list of questions, be on time for the appt and bring a tape recorder, or another friend or family member that can help them remember the information that was given. It also helps to take notes during the visit. Ask for things to be written down. The office I work in does this on a regular basis for our more complex patients.
    The receptionist and assistant can be your best allies in getting appt, results and favors when needed.

  2. Do what the Patients do when they come to see me and do not want to talk to my Assistant. I don’t know how they retrieved my email address at work, but they usually contact me that way if they have a question or would like to meet with me for a consultation.
    The other thing you can do is write a letter to the Doctor expressing your concerns. You can request for him/her to meet you and your Family for a meeting. That works too.

  3. If there was no receptionist, the Dr would be on the phone all day and unable to see patients or do surgery. It is called screening. You could write a list of questions for the Dr and ask him to answer them. Or make an appointment to go in and ask them. Or try to just say ‘ Can you please have the Dr call ?’ but then you have to stay accessible by phone. Good Luck

  4. If your folks want to speak with the doctor, there are two ways to go about it. Firstly they can call and ask to leave a message for the physician to phone them regarding ______ when he/she is available. The second is to set up a phone consultation.
    Many doctors don’t have the time to simply answer the phone when someone calls with a question (he/she doesn’t have their medical file on hand at that moment for starters). Many medical practices have paid educated staff who can answer many questions, or make determinations if a problem needs to be seen by a doctor or if the person should go to the ER.
    If this is an ongoing problem, where your folks are reluctant to phone in for advice, I suggest they consider mentioning this to their doctor at their next appointment, maybe he/she and your parents can work somehting out and get a better understanding of each other’s needs and concerns.
    I hope this helps.

  5. Not really. In my experience the doctors don’t answer phones, but they do return calls. Your parents can simply ask the doctor to call them back and leave their name & number.
    All my doctors have returned my calls in a timely manner. If they don’t, try a new doctor. Sometimes you can also speak to the “nurse on duty”.

  6. If you find one by all means share it with me. In the 3 years I’ve been working in a pharmacy I have never found a way to get to the doctor. It’s ALWAYS the snotty receptionist. Then they say OK we’ll leave a note with the doctor to call you back, the doctor never calls or they call a few days later.

  7. If you are already a patient at that particular office, ask the receptionist to have the doctor give you a call when he/she gets the chance. Thats how I usually do it.

  8. Ask to speak to the doctor or request to leave a message for him and specifically ask that he call you back.
    They don’t like this… but I did it last week and my doctor called me back.
    Sometimes, you just have to be assertive. (Or in this case, your parents do).
    Remind your parents that they’re the ones paying the doctor and that they have a right to speak to him or her.

  9. Call and ask to speak with his nurse. Then let the nurse know you have questions.And would like the DR to call them back.
    You may have to make an appointment to go it with them. I’m sure the DR will call them.

  10. “I must speak to the doctor right away. If that doesn’t happen, my next two calls will be to the State Medical Board and my attorney.”

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