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Old 06.05.2011, 09:29
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Paid 200chf for registration to a doctor???

I wonder if this is a normal thing or not.
When i register to EGK, i was told that i need to choose my doctor. He gave me a list of a doctor and told me to contact one of them to see if she still accepting a new patient or not. So, i choose one of the doctor who speak english, called her and asked her if she still accepting a new patient or not, and i would like to register as one of her patient. She said yes, and told me to stop by on the next day for the registration process. I thought it was for form filling. So, i came, i filled the form and then she started to ask me a few questions regarding my health, previous illness, family problem and my new life in Lausanne. The next month, i got a bill of 200 chf for 30 min consulting fee. Is this a normal thing??? i feel scammed.
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Old 06.05.2011, 09:31
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Re: Paid 200chf for registration to a doctor???

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i feel scammed.
Probably because you have been .

The clue should have been that you went in front of the doctor - if you were just form filling it would have been the receptionist .
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Old 06.05.2011, 09:42
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Re: Paid 200chf for registration to a doctor???

Weird, I only had to pay a deposit of 200 CHF when going to the dentist and then any treatment cost would be taken from that amount, of course I got another bill for the excess but I did get treatment!
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Old 06.05.2011, 09:48
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i thought that if you went to see ur doctor u don't need to pay. So what is the point of having one doctor appointed to you if you still have to pay if you visiting her. What is the different if i visit the doctor who is not registered as my doctor?

for anyone you want to know the name of this english speaking doctor in Lausanne, just pm me. i don't think it is right to write her name here.

Last edited by MusicChick; 07.05.2011 at 21:16.
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Old 06.05.2011, 09:55
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Re: Paid 200chf for registration to a doctor???

The thing is this 200 will come off your annual deductible anyway so depending on your policy excess thusly how much you need to pay for later treatment in the year.

I have heard of a compulsory "consultation" when signing up with several doctors. The only way to be sure of such in any service here is to ask first...
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Old 06.05.2011, 19:39
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Re: Paid 200chf for registration to a doctor???

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i thought that if you went to see ur doctor u don't need to pay. So what is the point of having one doctor appointed to you if you still have to pay if you visiting her. What is the different if i visit the doctor who is not registered as my doctor?
I think you must have misunderstood... you ALWAYS have to pay when you go to see a doctor here. Then you send the bill to the insurance company. You will have to pay a certain amount (your franchise), and then after that you only pay 10%. And, if you get REALLY ill, eventually you don't have to pay the 10% any more. (e.g. my franchise is around 300 chf per year, over that I only pay 10%, but last year I spent so much time in hospital that I exceeded the 'quote-part' as I'd spent over 700 chf (not including the 300 chf franchise), so after that I didn't pay anything.)

I think some insurance policies have a system where you have a 'named doctor' and you go to them in the first instance (as opposed to going to any doctor or specialist as you wish), and have lower premiums... but you still have to pay when you go to see that doctor!

It really doesn't sound like your doctor was ripping you off... here, you go to see the doctor, you pay (by the minute) for their time.

My dad go caught out in a similar way when he first moved here. We're from the UK, where healthcare is paid for by the state, so he wasn't used to this whole 'pay for the time you take' system. So he registered with a doctor, made the initial appointment, and, being a friendly and chatty guy, spent quite a bit of time with her. Regretted it when the bill came!
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Old 06.05.2011, 19:55
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Re: Paid 200chf for registration to a doctor???

Expats are so happy to see that their new doctor has plenty of time for them, much more than in the UK money talk/s.

It makes sense to get to know your new GP though, and more importantly for her/him to get to know you, check your blood pressure, any pre-exisitng conditions, medication, even 'views' (I made sure mine knows that I am an Exit member for instance) etc- so in case of an emergency they know 'what's what' . Money well spent I think, and a '1 off'.
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Old 06.05.2011, 21:55
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Re: Paid 200chf for registration to a doctor???

If you see a doctor here, you pay. Also, if you call the office and speak to the doctor on the telephone, you also pay. It's a nominal charge - like CHF 20 for a brief call.

To me, this seems quite fair. You're taking the physician's time, even if it is to fill out forms and gather medical history. No free trials. And I like that doctors can actually charge for telephone calls. In the US, this was (not sure if it still is) a big issue - patient calls took p a lot of time, and doctors weren't getting reimbursed for their services, and instead were insisting patients come in for a visit. Here it's much more straightforward. I don't mind that my doctors take a lot of time with me, and I do pay for that time (well, since I've also hit my CHF 300 and 700 this year, my insurance covers most of the rest anyway).

The OP's particular issue has come up before I think. It's also likely to be a consequence of insurance company (and model). I don't really think it's a scam, at all.

I know nothing about health care costs in the UK, but from examining my bills here, I can tell you that although health care is expensive here, it is less expensive than the US for hospital stays, most medications and office visits.
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Old 06.05.2011, 22:01
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Re: Paid 200chf for registration to a doctor???

Health Care in the UK is free (well, those who earn pay national insurance contributions). That means that a GP (family physician) gets paid the same sum for each patient on her/his list - whether the patient consults 1 or 100 times per year, for any amount of time.
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Old 06.05.2011, 22:08
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Re: Paid 200chf for registration to a doctor???

You were not scammed.

Just because one doesn't know how the system works and one is invoiced for something one did not know would be invoiced does not make the provider of services (in this case the doctor) scammers .

It would be nice if we would be a bit careful of insulting/accusing before we know what is going on. Well, it would be even more nice if we gave people the benefit of the doubt before we called foul.

Sometimes we get caught out because we were not told something, in this case that we would be charged for the visit. And sometimes we don't know or think to ask if we will be charged as we make assumptions from our previous experiences.

A surprise is not necessarily a scam.
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Old 06.05.2011, 22:32
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Re: Paid 200chf for registration to a doctor???

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Health Care in the UK is free (well, those who earn pay national insurance contributions). That means that a GP (family physician) gets paid the same sum for each patient on her/his list - whether the patient consults 1 or 100 times per year, for any amount of time.
So it's a capitation system - like HMO's in the US.
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Old 06.05.2011, 23:59
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Re: Paid 200chf for registration to a doctor???

Hi,

I am sure what the doctor did was totally legal and not a scam. However I tend to doubt the morals of someone who only decides to inform someone of a charge or due payment after the fact.

It's a bit like me offering you a cup of tea, then demanding a fiver from you after you've drunk it - because that's how my system works.

Years ago when we started our GmbH we paid our SFr20,000 start capital into a frozen account with Migrosbank - and they very nicely deducted SFr200 for the privilege - so we learned about the "system" the hard way. i.e. in Switzerland if there is something they can get away with charging you for, they certainly won't be up front about it.

Cheers,
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You were not scammed.

Just because one doesn't know how the system works and one is invoiced for something one did not know would be invoiced does not make the provider of services (in this case the doctor) scammers .

It would be nice if we would be a bit careful of insulting/accusing before we know what is going on. Well, it would be even more nice if we gave people the benefit of the doubt before we called foul.

Sometimes we get caught out because we were not told something, in this case that we would be charged for the visit. And sometimes we don't know or think to ask if we will be charged as we make assumptions from our previous experiences.

A surprise is not necessarily a scam.
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Old 07.05.2011, 00:40
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Re: Paid 200chf for registration to a doctor???

if you go to a tea/coffee house they will charge you for the tea.
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Old 07.05.2011, 05:51
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Re: Paid 200chf for registration to a doctor???

I agree with paying for something I actually received as well as a service provided. Form filling is not a doctor's job, but can be done with the receptionist.

I do not agree with the actions of said doctor, as it does not involved medical treatment.

Please call her up and tell her that you feel scammed and why.

I always ask about "unexpected" bills. In the end if you still have to pay, at least you know why precisely.


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Migrosbank - and they very nicely deducted SFr200 for the privilege - so we learned about the "system" the hard way. i.e. in Switzerland if there is something they can get away with charging you for, they certainly won't be up front about it.

Did they tell you beforehand that the amount will be deducted or was it written somehwere?

If not, why did you not complain?
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Old 07.05.2011, 10:35
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Re: Paid 200chf for registration to a doctor???

No, they didn't tell us about it beforehand. No doubt the charges are written down in small print that we hadn't read. We did complain - but to no avail. In the end we moved our company account to UBS - not the cheapest but at least they gave us decent service.

Migrosbank didn't even call or write to us to ask why we wanted to close the account.

Cheers,
Nick

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Did they tell you beforehand that the amount will be deducted or was it written somehwere?

If not, why did you not complain?
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Old 07.05.2011, 10:43
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Re: Paid 200chf for registration to a doctor???

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It's a bit like me offering you a cup of tea, then demanding a fiver from you after you've drunk it - because that's how my system works.

Years ago when we started our GmbH we paid our SFr20,000 start capital into a frozen account with Migrosbank - and they very nicely deducted SFr200 for the privilege - so we learned about the "system" the hard way. i.e. in Switzerland if there is something they can get away with charging you for, they certainly won't be up front about it.

Cheers,
Nick
This has just dusted off a foggy memory of visiting a museum in Luzern some years ago - the mural depicted a battle in which Switzerland wasn't taking part except to offer refuge to the injured and other displaced persons. They treated the injured, looked after the old, sick, women and children, gave fresh horses, etc., etc. Then at the end of the war, presented each of the involved parties with a big fat bill for their trouble.

History has never been my strong point but this kind of stuck in my mind and made me chuckle at the time.
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Old 07.05.2011, 12:17
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Re: Paid 200chf for registration to a doctor???

The thing is, the doctor would not even think of warning you of the charge, as for her/him it is perfectly normal. For those coming from UK, it may seem strange- but here in CH it is the norm. From what I can gather, the exercise was not just form filling, but finding out about your health, medication, pre-existing conditions, etc. S/he also should have checked blood pressure, etc. If I ever have an accident or a medical emergency - I'd like to know that my GP knows who I am, any medical condition, medication, etc. Doesn't that make sense?
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Old 07.05.2011, 13:15
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Re: Paid 200chf for registration to a doctor???

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It would be nice if we would be a bit careful of insulting/accusing before we know what is going on. Well, it would be even more nice if we gave people the benefit of the doubt before we called foul.
I would be thinking the same as the OP if I get charged 400CHF per hour, even for a doctor, which was not doing an open heart operation. The OP has not name the doctor and he´s only trying to find out how things works.

Your observations are a bit harsh IMO
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Old 07.05.2011, 13:35
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Re: Paid 200chf for registration to a doctor???

Basic consultation costs CHF110, time being charged on top per 5 mins slots.
The cost covers all staff, xray facilities, testing lab, rental, etc - so GP does not get CHF/hr. Private consultations in the UK are in the same range, at £175/200.
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Old 07.05.2011, 14:23
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Re: Paid 200chf for registration to a doctor???

I hear you and I've also posted some rants about the system in the past (here and here). I'm not happy about it either but I've also figured that this is Switzerland and if this is how the Swiss people wan't to organize their health care then who am I to criticize?
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