It never ceases to amaze me how poorly companies and professionals treat consumers.
Today when getting an MRI, MRA and some other M-acronym related procedure to evaluate my head after being in a car accident thanks to a drunk driver... I was shocked when I learned before they were to perform the MRA that I had to receive an injection called "a contrast" which neither my doctor, nor the nurses attending to me ever foretold me about.
Upon reading all of the contractual legalities and nearly signing my life away (which I never do, as I like to cross out things in contracts and initial them so as to decline) in regard to the possible side effects of this injection, I began asking questions as to how necessary this injection was along with my MRA.
Of course the technician who was scheduled to perform the procedure (along with 10 others that day), was NOT personable, NOR reassuring, NEITHER knowledgeable and patient enough to describe the procedure and why the injection was necessary.
However when I refused the injection and the MRA until receiving further information, the strong economic motivation on the part of the MRA technician and lab provider slowed them down long enough to begin to answer some of my unsanswered questions.
At first the front desk secretary and tech tried to feed me some rubbish about how "everybody" gets the contrast and they've only seen two people have any adverse reaction. I then asked about those two people and the extent of the adverse reactions.
The tech was happy to give me the MRA without the contrast, but mentioned my doctor asked for the contrast to be used in order to see more within my brain if (God forbid) something was wrong therein.
If I refused the contrast and something showed up on the MRI and proved to be wrong, then I would have to come back and do the procedure again ...this time with the contrast.
I therefore phoned my physcian (which I never got on the phone) for further information (which I should have received before the appointment and tests were scheduled in the first place) and got a little more information from his nurse.
The point to the whole entire matter is as consumers we must be proactive and not let people treat us as tools and cattle to be pushed around.
The tech initially was a bit aggressive with me saying, "We need to start the procedure." I refused until I felt comfortable and received additional information. It was then the tech provided me a piece of paper with a fully detailed list of all possible side effects and negative reactions to the injection.
Yet none of this was given to me before the appointment, nor offered to me for review, neither given at the lab UNTIL I demanded it.
Sadly this is how many businesses are run ...even worse the medical industry (which is severely and intensely economically motivated these days).
That being said, stand up for yourself and use your backbone before allowing people to treat you like a piece of meat to perform tests and procedures on.
Be a knowledgeable and proactive consumer, never bowing or caving to some policy when your body and pocketbook are involved.
http://www.PaulFDavis.com - consumer advocate speaker, author and consultant