Dear Editor,

The proverbial phrase that “things happen for a reason” is analogous to the situation at LBJ during my visit at the dental clinic on December 24, 2012 and December 26, 2012.

I witnessed and observed that the clinic opens at 7:30 a.m. and people march in to pick a number, be seated and wait to be called.  Around 8 a.m., the bench inside the clinic is filled to the maximum and people must wait outside.

In my case, I picked number 9 and waited for approximately 4 hours to be seen.  At the same time, people are still coming in to the clinic, again, the waiting area is full.

I am sharing this story because I am deeply concerned that the concept of “picking a number” on a first come, first serve basis is an inferior system adopted to control an uncivilized society and perpetuate the lack of maturity; henceforth, must resort to barbaric methods.

As a suggestion, rather than the existing archaic approach, a patient must register at the check-in window for payment.  Thereafter, the staff at the check-in window sends out confirmation to the clinic electronically or by phone that the patient in question has made the proper payment and the registered patient is cleared to be seen, based on the time stamped during the registration process.

The suggested humane procedure avoids the redundancies and substantially reduces the waiting cycle.  Moreover, the clinical and administrative services will be retained pursuant to the separate roles, but oblige in common areas of interdependency respectfully.

Kereti Mata’utia, Jr.

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