Tag Archives: voice mail

Clinic leaves news of cancer diagnosis on voice mail

Credit: Stepan Crani

Credit: Stepan Crani

How, in 2014, does this happen? What thinking, feeling person believes this is an acceptable way to convey this kind of news?

A surgeon’s office calls a patient* who had cancer surgery three weeks before. The patient doesn’t answer so the office person leaves a message to confirm the date, a week hence, of the follow-up appointment to discuss the pathology.


Then, three hours later, the associated cancer clinic (a major Canadian centre) calls the same patient, who is still not home, and leaves the following message (wording approximate): Your appointment with the surgeon has been cancelled. Instead, see <substitute doctor> a week later. In the meantime, call the radiation oncology department. Continue reading →

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