I noticed awhile back that the new medical clinic by my workplace put up notices all over their doors and windows that say 'You must be a patient of this clinic to attend walk-in services'. I am going to check to see if the signs are still there and try to remember my camera to get a photo - and then I am going to contact Alberta Health Services to see why and how this is actually legal. I have not seen signs posted like that at any other clinic in town.
These are not specialists. They are all general practioners/family doctors. In other words, we all pay their salaries. We help pay for all of the patients that they see. How is it that these public medical staff people are not allowing me to go in there at walk-in service hours? One of the doctors in this clinic sits on the advisory board for AHS. None of them are taking new patients, and haven't been since shortly after the clinic opened.
Is it legal for general practioners to turn away people that are not on any of their doctor's patient lists? My son has an ear infection, his doctor is out of town, this clinic is literally a one minute walk from my work place, but I had to take him to a clinic that is further away instead. That's when I suddenly wondered at the legality and even the morality of this practise. The doctors might band together to open their own clinic, but they are paid by ME and my partner, my family, my friends - yet none of us are allowed to go there. Why is that exactly?
My own family doctor has walk in services 3 nights a week. He sees anyone who walks through the door. The clinic I visited today has been open for longer than I can remember and I have never seen a sign on their door disallowing 'non patients', even though it too is operated by a group of 5 physicians. So what's up with the Health Matters clinic?? I will have to look into that.