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  #21  
Old 12.09.2017, 21:33
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Re: How to fill prescriptions?

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... the front desk lady won't speak to non-German speakers on the phone.
I do wonder what this situation sounds like from the perspective of the lady at the doctor's surgery. The OP has been in Switzerland since June and is married to a Swiss. That she would prefer her doctor to speak good English is understandable but that she seems not to have been able to find the words to speak to the member of staff at the surgery in beginner's German less so. Perhaps she tried and the lady was less than helpful but maybe there have been misunderstandings in the past when speaking languages other than German on the phone which make the receptionist reluctant to take phone calls in English.

In addition, there seems to have been uncertainty in the conversation with the doctor too. Perhaps the OP is not yet used to phrasing things simply and clearly to non-native speakers. However good people's English is, we see repeatedly on here how confusing English English can be to Swiss English speakers and vice versa. Misunderstandings are very common and medical misunderstandings can be potentially dangerous.

I agree that receptionists should be polite and ready to assist but there are two sides to every story. Having worked as a doctor's receptionist I can see other explanations.
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Last edited by Longbyt; 12.09.2017 at 21:54. Reason: Typo Nr. 1,786
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  #22  
Old 13.09.2017, 14:20
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Re: How to fill prescriptions?

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I live in Zug;
Looking at this thread again, two other minor points occurred to me. Your profile says Kappel am Albis but you say here that you live in Zug. Sometimes the location you give will affect the answers you receive for questions or comments on here.

The other point is that I see you have a medical background. I wonder if perhaps you mentioned this to the receptionist, or, without meaning to, gave her the impression that you know more about the subject than she does. It doesn't take much to put someone's back up once slight mistrust or seeds of disagreement are sown.

I'll probably be in trouble again for nit-picking but
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I hoped for a doctor's office where English would be acceptable by all.
sounds... I dunno. Oben abe? I would have said something along the lines of "I had hoped to find a doctor's office where everyone would understand English spoken with an American accent".

I appreciate that this sounds pernickety, but you are here to stay and the faster you learn how people might react, the smoother will be your path.
Check my profile if you think I am being far too fussy.
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Old 13.09.2017, 14:29
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Re: How to fill prescriptions?

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I'll probably be in trouble again for nit-picking but
sounds... I dunno. Oben abe? I would have said something along the lines of "I had hoped to find a doctor's office where everyone would understand English spoken with an American accent".
I am very certain that you misread her posting and that she did not express her hope towards the assistent.

You are overthinking..
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Old 13.09.2017, 14:34
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Re: How to fill prescriptions?

Lost in translation.
I didn't mean that she actually said these words at all. But the way the sentence is phrased just bothered me. I've heard this sort of phrasing from 'aliens' on here and in real life in Switzerland too. Sometimes it gives a hint of the subconscious way of thinking. Maybe I am overthinking, as you say. But I really have had a lot of experience with unintentional 'rubbing folk up the wrong way' that goes on in reallife.
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Old 13.09.2017, 14:58
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Re: How to fill prescriptions?

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Lost in translation.
I didn't mean that she actually said these words at all. But the way the sentence is phrased just bothered me. I've heard this sort of phrasing from 'aliens' on here and in real life in Switzerland too. Sometimes it gives a hint of the subconscious way of thinking. Maybe I am overthinking, as you say. But I really have had a lot of experience with unintentional 'rubbing folk up the wrong way' that goes on in reallife.
Maybe doctor assistants are to easily bothered

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