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Doctor's office sign limiting questions you can ask your doctor

DH Vancouver Staff May 20, 2015 9:00 am

Have you ever gone to the doctor and seen a sign saying “one question or problem only” per visit?

Did you experience this after arranging a HandyDART for the trip to the doctor’s office or taking time off work to get there?

Have you wondered if this is even allowed?

Image: CKNW

Image: CKNW

A sign limiting your questions and problems on your doctor’s visit is in fact allowed.

It is an office by office, clinic by clinic decision according to Dr. Bill Cavers, President of Doctors of B.C.

Here is the logic behind the sign:

“Please understand my situation. I do have a full list today and I do have a backlog. So I can’t necessarily address all of your problems in a single visit. We will accomplish what we can do today. You’re going to need to show me the list of problems you have so we can come to an understand upon the most urgent problem to deal with today.”

But Cavers goes on to say there are other ways than just the sign to get the message across:

“I also happen to feel that a sign saying only one question per visit or only one problem isn’t necessarily the most polite way to get your message across. I tell parents I’ll deal with as many issues as we can in the time that we have allotted to us.”

He says if a patient has a substantive complaint about a specific doctor, they’re asked to register it with the College of Physicians and Surgeons of B.C.


Originally posted on

DH Vancouver Staff
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