Mary: "There's a doctor on the phone, says he needs to talk to you right now."
She hands me a piece of paper. I pick up the phone. It's a guy I've never heard of.
Dr. Grumpy: "This is Dr. Grumpy."
Dr. Interruptus: "Hi, this is Cody Interruptus, I work over at the Local Hospital clinic, and I've got a guy here... 27 years old... anyway, he has Flehner-Lathrop Syndrome, and I think he needs to see a neurologist soon, if you could work him in."
Dr. Grumpy: "That's pretty uncommon, and I've never seen a case. Have you called Ivory Tower Neurology? They have a lady who specializes in it."
Dr. Interruptus: "No. I mean, I'm part of the Local Hospital clinic, and would like to keep the patient here, seeing other docs who work out of Local Hospital. In this day and age we all need to work together and support each other in the community. I'd appreciate it if you could help me out. I mean, you can refer him to Ivory Tower afterwards if you need to."
Dr. Grumpy (feeling guilty): Okay... I'll work him in over lunch tomorrow."
Dr. Interruptus: "Thank you."
Dr. Grumpy: "Let me get his info... Looks like Mary wrote most of it down... What insurance does he have?"
Dr. Interruptus: "Sickness & Wealth HMO."
Dr. Grumpy: "Oh... I'm sorry, I'm not contracted with S&W. I never have been. Two of my call partners, Drs. Brain & Nerve, are, let me give you their number..."
Dr. Interruptus: "But this is LOCAL HOSPITAL. Those two work out of OTHER HOSPITAL. You need to help support us and the Local Hospital community. Can't you just see him for free?"
Dr. Grumpy: "He has insurance. This is not a charity issue. I do plenty of charity work for the uninsured. I'm not going to see him for free when there are plenty of docs who take his insurance around."
Dr. Interruptus: "You should be loyal to the hospital. That should be your first priority."
Dr. Grumpy: "I..."
Dr. Interruptus: "Thanks for nothing."