During intern year, I had to do a continuity clinic. I would get about four patients booked per clinic and try not to get too horribly behind.
So for four clinics in a row, I kept seeing the same name on the list: this patient who they kept scheduling for appointments and he NEVER showed. When I would see him on the schedule, I started to think it was some kind of joke or something and that this guy didn't even really exist. I mean, after he missed three straight appointments, there should be some kind of rule that he doesn't get a new one.
I came late to clinic one evening because I assumed the patient wasn't going to show and I didn't want to wait around for half an hour. Amazingly, though, I got paged and the nurses told me he had arrived.
When I walked into the room, I had already decided I was going to yell at him a little. I didn't want to give him a hard time, but the guy had missed THREE appointments in a row. "Sorry, I forgot," he said.
"It's not really fair to other patients," I told him. "There are only a limited number of spots and when you don't show up, you're taking a spot of someone who also needed an appointment."
"Yes, but the problem I'm here for is forgetfulness," he said.
Sure enough, the form did list "forgetfulness" as his chief complaint. Way to prove it.