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LO passed away. He had been seeing PCP regularly. We have not heard from the doctor, but the doctor’s was notified via email. Should we expect a call or card of sympathy?

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Dear Ricky,

I am sorry for your loss. It would be very thoughtful if the doctor's office could send a sympathy card, but I think most don't due to liability issues possibly.

I know my dad's doctor tried to call the house a couple of times but I did not pick up. I don't think he wanted to leave a voicemail because of the concern about liability again. Not that I was going to sue. I blame myself more than the doctor.
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Reply to cdnreader
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I received a condolence card from my husband's Oncology Palliative Care doctor, but he had not passed away! He was hospitalized in May and was in pretty bad shape. He was released to rehab to try to get his strength and balance back. The doctor thought he had passed, cancelled all his future appointments, and sent me a nice letter about how I was such a good advocate for him! Needless to say, we had to reschedule all the cancelled appointments. But the three of us all had a great laugh about it and the card and letter are on our mantle. We told her the famous quote from Mark Twain, "The news of my demise is greatly exaggerated!"

Why the confusion? The doctor had helped smooth over some rough patches with the hospital staff during his in-patient stay. I am an artist, and gave her a favorite painting (left with the receptionist,) and a letter thanking her for all her help. She interpreted this to mean thank you for his care because he had passed! So I guess I won't expect another card when his time does come.

I am so sorry for your loss. But maybe this little bit of humor can give you a brief moment of lightness.
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Reply to Fowlair
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On the other side of this, devil's advocate, have any of you ever sent the doc or staff a thank you note or a gift to the office because you are happy with the service that they have provided your loved one?

I have sent edible arrangements to doctor's office when mom moved to memory care and also to the day care that she attended. Those gifts were very appreciated by staff! They were such a help and everything they did was something helpful and supportive of me.
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Reply to gladimhere
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Probably shouldn't expect it at this time. Too many doctors' offices are understaffed and the staff is not very experienced. The more senior staff have probably retired early when the COVID epidemic closed offices around the country. The younger staff do not understand that condolences are expected.
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Reply to Taarna
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I am in Canada, so no SS.

I would not expect anything from my parents' doctors.

My vet does send out condolence cards.
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Reply to Tothill
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My Dad had an ophthalmologist that my mom & myself used to go to. He didn’t send a card but he came to the wake. He’s known my family for years.

Very compassionate Dr
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Reply to Jada824
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My fathers doctor never called or sent a card when he passed. Some do but most don't.
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Cover99 Jul 28, 2021
Exactly, if it is near the end, some try to "pass off" no pun the patient to someone else.
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Strange , I have received condolence cards from the Vet for animals that have passed . But never from a primary care doctor. We did receive a lovely card from Hospice when my mother passed .
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Reply to Nanulinda1
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My Father's Dr and the nurses all signed a card for my family. Then two of the nurses sent their own personal card. Saying how much they enjoyed my dads sense of humor. I was so distraught, I never sent a thank you card. Now I feel horrible that I didn't.
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Reply to Playadelcarmen2
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No, people Dr's do not, but when we had to have our cat put down many years ago, the vets office sent a sympathy card that everyone signed, and they also sent a floral arrangement the very next day. Go figure!
I'm sorry for your loss.
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Reply to funkygrandma59
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Cover99 Jul 24, 2021
That was really nice of them. Only time vet called us was to find out if we were going to come back to them. Once they were notified, she had passed, we never heard from them again.
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We never heard from my dad’s doctors. I’m sorry for your loss
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Reply to Daughterof1930
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Cover99 Jul 24, 2021
Was his care mostly paid by Insurance? If so, his SS would be flagged as belonging to a deceased person, and all current providers who had his SS in their records would be notified.
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I think the doctor would probably feel that it wouldn't be appropriate. I'm sure it's no reflection on his personal feelings, but it was a professional relationship first and foremost.
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Reply to Countrymouse
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Doctors run businesses and x doctor/ patient relationship does not end up as best friends. Dont expect letters.
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Cover99 Jul 24, 2021
That's right, even more so if insurance is paying, then insurance is the boss. It does make it easier to permanently cut ties when the loved one passes.
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Wendy Williams sums up how many probably feel when learning about a death.

Youtube search

oh she passed away Aww hmm alright tiktok
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Reply to Cover99
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I'm sorry for your loss. Probably not. You didn't really have to e-mail. Once the death is noted by Social Security, I believe anyone or business that provided service to the deceased person with that number would be notified, thanks to computers

My mom passed, no card or anything from the PCP she had been seeing for several years. (She quietly dropped her when she was in rehab/nursing home) her hospital records were immediately sent to an off site storage facility the hospital uses, her MyChart account could not be accessed, even the drugstore she used to get her prescriptions her account could not be accessed. There was nothing from either Ophthalmologist she had been going to for several years.

The doctor's office when notified, would close out his account and submit any outstanding bills for payment to his insurance, Medicare or Medicaid.

You can look at it this way, you don't ever have to deal with this doctor ever again unless you want to. In short you can be like the title of the Fleetwood Mac song "Go Your Own Way"
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Reply to Cover99
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My Moms GP office sent a lovely card. Her cardio and eye specialist did not. Hospice is still keeping in touch, Dads MC sent a lovely card. I really appreciated all of them. But we are in a small town near a bigger town,, so maybe manners are different.
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Reply to pamzimmrrt
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We received a card from my moms cardiologist and staff. I thought it was very thoughtful and certainly not expected.
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Reply to 97yroldmom
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No, they don't , and honestly, it's because they need to see their patients as patients, and less as people for their own sanity.

I had a neighbor who was a pediatric ICU doctor caring for the sickest babies and child there are. She lost a fair number of patients, but for self-preservation, she couldn't allow herself to mourn them or get too attached. I only saw her distraught over one patient in 10 years -- a little boy they'd had there for the first seven months of his life. He was finally ready to go home, and he died his first night home. She was completely destroyed, and she could never get that attached to her patients again because her mental health could never survive it.
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Reply to MJ1929
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No, its not a usual thing. Locally, I stopped in Mom's doctors' offices and told them and called the ones that were further away. I did this primarily so they could close Moms files.
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Cover99 Jul 23, 2021
Didn't her SS send out a message she had passed?
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I wouldn't expect a card from his PCP. However, some PCPs establish great realtionships with some of their patients. My wife's dr retired 5 yrs before my wife passed away, and yet sent a beautiful card and note to us.
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Reply to sjplegacy
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I wonder how many cards they would be sending. This, I would think, would put the doctor on a less than professional level.
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Reply to gladimhere
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I would never expect such a gesture, and would find no particular comfort in receiving a co dole Che from a professional who was caring for my LO.

My expectation would be good for them while they were living.
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Reply to AnnReid
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Not always. Social niceties have changed. You emailed the doctor and did not call. So it’s all different.
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