Getting It Right Is A Long Shot

, , , , | Right | April 6, 2020

(I work switchboard for the local teaching hospital. This means we deal with a lot of trainee doctors and medical students; they come from all over the country and province, often only for a few weeks at a time. Sometimes they make me question the future of our health system.)

Caller: “This is [Caller]. I’m a med student. I have forgotten my pager and need calls to go through to my cell phone.”

Me: “Okay, the number we have on file for you is [number].”

Caller: “That’s right.”

Me: “Is that long-distance?”

(Saskatchewan has two area codes, but they both cover the whole province, so either can be local or long-distance. If it’s a long-distance call, you need to add a 1 in front so that the phone system knows it’s long-distance. Generally speaking, if you need to dial a number anywhere in the province outside your local town/city, you need the 1.)

Caller: “Well, it’s a Saskatchewan number.”

Me: “But is it a Saskatoon number? Is this a long-distance number?”

Caller: *noncommittal noise*

Me: “I need to know if this is long-distance so we can dial it correctly to reach you.”

Caller: “My understanding of long-distance is that it is only outside the province.”

(This is a future doctor, people.)

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