Archived Q&A and Reviews
Re: Doctor with After Hours (Jan. 2004)
I am in the same situation and had to search high and low for an OB/GYN that could see me after work.
East Bay Medical Group usually offers extended hours. My doctor is actually a family practitioner who also does OB/GYN, Dr. James Eichel. He works out of offices in Berkeley and in Alameda, I'm not sure about Oakland. He is very calming and gentle. Sometimes it is hard to get a hold of him or his staff, but once you get in to see him he is very nice. Also, if you go see him, expect to be in the waiting room for a little while before you get in - this gives you time to write down all your questions and go in prepared.
I am a very demanding/high maintenance patient and want to know everything! My husband is different and he sits back more calmly and takes it all in, digests the information, then asks questions. Dr. Eichel seems to respond better to my husband's approach but has never shyed away from all my demanding questions.
Let me know if you have any questions about his specific personality/approach. I do however recommend you talk to a few OB/GYNs before you pick one that will be with you for the entire pregnancy and delivery. It's a relationship you really want to be comfortable with and not feel bullied into anything. mommy to be, sonia
Re: Pediatrician who has time for longer appts
I had Dr. Eichel, a family practitioner in Berkeley, as my doctor until had to switch to Kaiser for financial reasons. Friends have him as their doctor and their children's pediatrician. He is a wonderful doctor. Great diagnostician. Thoughtful, doesn't rush you, concerned, takes time to explain. Social conscience. He has two young kids himself. He has one great nurse, Rhonda. The downside of someone who spends time like he does? He ALWAYS runs late - sometimes ten minutes, sometimes as much as an hour. It used to make me furious, until I had something scary happen to me, and he spent an extra 30 minutes. Then I decided that it was worth the tradeoff - I would just plan for twice the time I normally would and bring a good book. His office staff used to be terrible, seem to be getting better. Tim
I'm a big pain about people running late (especially Doctors) and I haven't found Jim Eichel to be bad at all. As Tim noted, he's a very nice guy, and very concerned. He's called me back after hours about things I've been worried about, looks stuff up, and recently called the department of public health to check on something. I haven't used him as a pediatrician,but as a GP, though I don't think I would hesitate to. He sees lots of kids. I like him a good deal and folks who know me know I don't like that many medical people.