In my wife’s dermatology practice, if patients call the office with questions, they have to speak with the nurse first. There are reasons for this. The nurse is capable of answering most questions people have without calling the physician out of an exam room where she is seeing a patient. If the nurse cannot answer the question of the patient who has called on the telephone, the physician is able to return the call between patients or at a time designated to answer patient questions. This way of doing things creates fewer disruptions to the patients who have made appointments. More patients are seen on time, and more patients can be seen in the course of a day.
Of course, some people object to the procedure. They do not call to talk to the nurse. They call to talk to the physician. They think that she should drop what she is doing and talk to them about their problem regardless of the level of medical necessity. When the physician does not cater to their needs immediately, out of a sense of wounded pride they sometimes get angry and verbally mistreat the nurse or staff member trying to assist them.
Naaman, the commander of Syria’s army, went to the home of Elisha the prophet for some dermatological assistance. When Elisha sent out his assistant with instructions for Naaman’s cure, Naaman became angry and resisted the regimen prescribed. Because of the anger fueled by his pride, he very nearly missed out on what he was seeking.