His office staff does not appear to ever answer the phone and leaving a message on the voice message system is like screaming into the top of a well, the only response that you will ever get is an echo. His procedure for making an appointment, canceling an appointment, adjusting a medication or getting a refill is purposely difficult. If you want to torture yourself and make a followup appointment, you best do so while you are there because it will, otherwise, be impossible to schedule.
He charges $25.00 if you lose your prescription and $50.00 if you miss your appointment. He spends no more than five minutes with you (which my son and I are actually grateful for), asks you condescending and rude questions (Have you taken the time to email his teachers to see how he is doing in school?), fills in the answers to his questions with whatever he wants the answer to be (The Psychiatrist: "How are you doing with the vyvanse?" My son: "The Vyvanse takes away my appetite for 13 hours", The Psychiatrist: "So everything is going great, no appetite means it's working.")
I have been having these psychiatrist revenge fantasies where I win the lottery but instead of blowing off the next scheduled appointment (after all what is a mere $50.00 to a lottery winner), I go to the appointment armed with a case of Febreeze for his smelly office, brand spanking new sound neutralizers, and a prescription for him for some Paxil or Effexor. I tell him to get his damn depression treated and to only return to seeing patients when he is cured of his anger and sadness. In my fantasy I forward the office phone line to a real psychiatrist that I have personally paid for and I save all the other miserable patients in this practice from the incompetence of this evil psychiatrist.
I am sure you are asking yourselves why on earth we are still going to this awful physician. We go there because this is where our insurance will pay for us to go. There is a child psychiatrist that is wonderful and that we have paid out of pocket to see but with two kids in private school and only one of us working full time, we cannot afford to see them regularly. So we are stuck with the horrible psychiatrist.
I recently tried to get a referral from him for a Cognitive Behavioral Therapist (CBT). He said that this type of treatment was not necessary for my son and that he would not write the referral. Our insurance might pay for the CBT if I had a referral but Dr. Do-Nothing will not write a referral so we will have to continue to pay out of pocket for that treatment.
Our situation is not as bad as it could be. I and my spouse both have prescriptive privileges and this makes the prescription situation a little easier for us as we can write a prescription if my son's Vyvanse runs out before we can get him in for an appointment or if, as happened this summer, we go on vacation and forget his medication. I do not think it is good form to right prescriptions for family members so we only do this if there is some sort of emergency. Still we have that option which I recognize is a God sent.
I am sure that there are many people seeing psychiatrist or psychologist that they hate because they are the only pyschiatrist in town or the only psychiatrist that their insurance will authorize. I have no advice for you except to suggest that you read all you can on your condition and try to educate yourself on all your options. Persist, insist and make a pest out of yourself if you are not getting better and your psychiatrist is giving you the 'five minute write off'. If all this fails, scrounge up all your pennies and pay for a psychiatrist that is recommended by a University in your area, by CHADD, or by your primary care physician.
Any of the above referrals are bound to be better than an nsurance company referral. I also suggest that while you are saving your pennies you should indulge yourself and think up a good psychiatrist revenge fantasy. It will make you feel tons better and it is absolutely free.