Psychiatry & Psychology--General/possibly ethical question

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Question
Hello. I'm not sure what to call my question. I am 49 and I applied for disability due to mental health issues. My lawyer gave me the name of a psychologist to give me a full evaluation. I made an appointment for feb 1st. A few days later their office called to say they made a scheduling error because the doctor would be on vacation, or out of town that day. The appointment was rescheduled for feb 15th.

Today was feb 1st, the date of the postponed appointment, and their office called early and left a message to say the doctor could not see me today because he was ill. The message said nothing about rescheduling. I called them back minutes later, got no answer, and left a message that my appointment for today had already been changed to the 15th, and asked them to call me back to confirm that. They never called back, perhaps because the office closed early on friday, I don't know.

Obviously there are communication problems in this office, since the first appt should not have been made, and it had not been noted as postponed. But what bothers me most is that today they said the doctor was ill and could not see me, while I am 99.9% certain they previously postponed my appt because the doctor would be out of town. Somebody lied to me one or both times, and I don't understand why.

I don't know if this was merely a group of errors on the part of the office staff, or if the doctor told them to do any of these things. But it seems to me that this clinic is either incompetent or deceitful, and either way I don't feel comfortable placing my future in their hands.

I suppose my question then is, should I report this to some authority, and if so how would I go about reporting it to whom? I hope I have made the situation clear, and I thank you for your time.

Robert

Answer
Robert

This behavior is inappropriate, unacceptable, and disconcerting.  It does not rise to the level of an ethical violation because you are not currently a patient of this therapist.

What I think would be prudent is for you to report this conduct to the attorney who referred you and request a referral to a different psychologist.

Best,

Dr. Elmore

Psychiatry & Psychology--General

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Andrew M. Elmore, Ph.D.

Expertise

I can answer questions about: Stress. Headaches. Stress-related Disorders. Anxiety/Panic Disorder. Depression. Psychopathology. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. Personal Problem Solving. Life in General. Relationships: Love, Friendship, Business Partner, Coworker, Family,Child/Parent. What makes us tick. The use of psycho-pharmacological agents in combination with psychological treatment. How to deal with evil people in your life. How to improve your outlook under duress. How to control stress. How to control mood. How to control headaches. I cannot answer: Questions about Eating Disorders. Questions about computers.

Experience

30 years in private practice as a psychologist in Manhattan. Dealing with people from almost every conceivable ethnic and socioeconomic backgrounds, and as many character types as exist in this country. Dealing with patients from 8 years old to 90 years old. Pioneer in biofeedback and the treatment of stress-related disorders. Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine since 1982. Treatment of stress-related, anxiety and depressive disorders with biofeedback and cognitive behavioral therapy. Developed personal problem solving, an extremely precise form of psychotherapy. Relationship therapy for couples, families, parent/child issues, business partners, coworkers, employers, and dealing with psychopathic individuals in your life.

Organizations
American Psychological Association. Association for Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback. Biofeedback Certification Institute of America. New York Academy of Sciences.

Publications
The journal, Psychophysiology. The book, Expanding Dimensions of Consciousness. The journal, Headache. The journal, Biofeedback and Self-Regulation. The journal Psychiatry Digest. The book, The TMJ Book. The book, Dental Phobia. The network, CNN. Parade Magazine. The newspaper, Newsday. The Manhattan TV station, WCBS. The national news program, The CBS Evening News. The newspaper, The New York Post. The national TV program, The Phil Donohue Show. The magazine, The New Yorker. The magazine, Glamor. The magazine, Redbook. The magazine, Health. The magazine, Bottom Line Personal. Web MD. The website, Healthology. The magazine, Newsweek.

Education/Credentials
Ph.D. SUNY at Stony Brook, 1979. B.A., magna cum laude with Honors in Psychology, Illinois Wesleyan University, 1974.

Awards and Honors
Who’s Who in Medicine and Healthcare, First, Second and Third Editions, 1997-2000. Appointed to the Training Faculty of the Biofeedback Certification Institute of America (BCIA), 1993. Senior Fellow BCIA. New York Academy of Sciences, 1987. Who’s Who in the East, 1983-present. Who’s Who in Frontier Science and Technology, First Edition. Citation Paper Author. Eleventh Annual Meeting of the Biofeedback Society of America, Colorado Springs, Colorado, 1980. Biofeedback Society of America Scholar, 1979. Co-author, USVA Grant, “Variables Affecting the Experience of Pain in Migraine,” USVA Medical Center, Northport, New York, 1977-1979. Biomedical Research Fellow, Department of Biomedical Engineering, SUNY at Stony Brook, Stony Brook, New York, 1978. NIMH Predoctoral Fellowship, 1976. BA, Magna cum laude, with Honors in Psychology, 1974. Danforth Fellowship Nominee, Illinois Wesleyan University, Bloomington, Illinois, 1973.

Past/Present Clients
Most of my clients are my private patients. However I have provided many seminars, lectures and workshops for: Columbia University. The Mount Sinai School of Medicine. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. The Museum of Natural History. The UJA Federation. The university, CW Post. The College of New Rochelle. Equinox Fitness. Travelers Insurance. AutoOne Insurance. Chubb Insurance. Metropolitan Life. Allstate Insurance. State Farm Insurance. Encompass Insurance. The public relations firm, Porter Novelli. The investment firm, Capital Re:. The Estee Lauder corporation. The law firm of Irwin Abrams. The National Insurance Crime Bureau. GEICO Insruance. Beth Israel Hospital.

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