The Pharmacy Chick

Flying the coup in retail

The Long Goodbye

Filed under: Uncategorized — pharmacychick at 6:42 pm on Monday, November 3, 2014

Ive been trying to write more in recent days.  The Joy is just not there….the desire, urge, whatever…to put the proverbial pen to paper ( which of course few people do anymore) but in this case, fingers to key board… has been gone.  No will whatsoever to really write my thoughts and place out for the world to see.  I no longer find it interesting to write about my job.

It’s been a good ride and with all rides…eventually they come to an end. This will be that end. I just have run out of interesting things to say and re working or hashing out the same old things seems silly. Obviously I am not alone. The heyday of pharmacy blogging has ebbed tho there are but a few interesting posts that occasionally shows up. I miss Angry and Angriest as only they could weave profanity into poetry. I miss Ole apothecary for his wisdom from the ages. I don’t care about politics very much and because the boards of pharmacy don’t care about pharmacists, doing battle with them is usually fruitless.

When I started to write, I was inspired to write for an audience that I assumed would be fellow pharmacists…those who could relate to what I wrote about…the day to day life of a retail pharmacist.  I was surprised to see that more of my readers came from the non pharmacy variety.. patients, nurses, a few doctors..etc..based on the comments I received.

I’ve written on just about every subject I could think of. I’ve had comments from people who could relate and some from people who totally missed the point and released venom only a rattlesnake could appreciate.  I still get comments filled with hatred about my posts on the oxycontin error made at a different store. The comments descended into a war of words on narcotics use and abuse when that wasn’t the topic. Yet I am trashed to this very day. I also get comments on the post about the Norco rx I got where the person wanted it 14 days early and was mad when I said NO because he felt that paying cash meant he could fill it at will. Clearly any post about a narcotic or controlled substance hits a nerve.  Any other drug in the same situation gets merely a yawn.

Ive been called judgmental and mean by people who think my job is to fill any prescription handed to me, no matter the circumstance. And of course that isn’t the case, legally or ethically.  We have a corresponding responsibility to only fill prescriptions for a legitimate medical use and I could face suspension for failing to do that.

I have been vilified for having an opinion. Apparently pharmacist cannot have an opinion.  we are to be robotic in our demeanor and actions.

Ive been carved a new orifice for not feeling sorry for every train wreck  that comes to my pharmacy.  Apparently being able to say no to an unreasonable request makes me an insensitive a$$hole.

Ive been shocked at the unkindness of strangers who read blogs for the sole purpose of spewing hate anonymously.  After a while I had no more tolerance for their crap and would either not allow their comments or would dish it right back.

Ive also cried with customers who have lost their loved ones after valiant battles with cancer.  Ive sat at the end of a death bed hearing stories about ballroom dancing with a woman whose feet will never touch the floor again. Ive sat in a dark pharmacy long after closing waiting for people also working late so they can pick up their own prescriptions.  Ive had mothers lose their children to cancer and children lose their mothers to the same.  I found Melanoma on the back of one customer who thanks me every year when he gets his flu shot, and called 911 with one hand while a customer on the phone believed he was having a heart attack ( and called ME for some reason…)

Ive made errors…I have caught errors. Ive written about my errors, and written about the errors of others.  Most recently I caught an error where a Dr prescribed Serophene 50mg for a pregnant woman.  Nothing made sense about this prescription and it took a great deal of effort to make the office research it. It was supposed to be Seroquel.  I asked the nurse. “Do you realize the gravity of this error that your nurse practitioner signed off on??”  She only said they picked the wrong drug on a drop down menu. I said ” We have procedures in place for when something like this happens in a pharmacy.  I hope that your office has the same because this could have been a tragedy.”

Ive written about the things I care deeply about and then later wondered about my lack of caring after all these years. I think my lack of caring has made it easier to quit writing because I walk away from work each day not fretting about stuff.  I give 100% of my efforts to doing the right thing in every circumstance even if its not popular. I’ve come to understand that what I do isn’t a popularity contest and doing what is right and legal isn’t always going to make me a star in the eyes of a patient.  Sometimes doing the right thing means somebody has to wait longer so I get an answer from a dr office about a drug interaction, a drug selection, or verifying the legitimacy.

Ive shared my private life with readers. Ive shared the loss of my mother, the death of my pets, my faith challenges, the thrill of the victories and the agonies of my failures. Every day I struggle with my inadequacies, so reading hurtful comments made that worse.

I wrote for my own personal enjoyment and after a while it became more work than fun as I struggled to come up with interesting ideas to write about. I attribute this to being not emotionally attached to my job anymore. Don’t get me wrong…  I care about doing a quality job. I care about doing the best job I can, in fact. I devote a great deal of effort to making sure that my employer gets his money’s worth. What I no longer do is derive emotional support FROM or get emotionally INVOLVED with the activities of the store or its customers.  I am friendly and funny, and happy and all that, because that is precisely what is expected of me. but I am no longer emotionally invested.   I don’t miss it when I am not there, and I don’t feel any special loyalty to the company.  Part of this emptiness can be blamed on emotional exhaustion.  Retail pharmacy can suck the life right out of you, just like the Dementors in Harry Potter… but part of the blame goes to the company itself who has demonstrated over and over that I am merely an expense, a person of no value, to be controlled, manipulated, and monitored.  I am weary. My work is for the Lord. It is only for his Glory that I expend the effort.  I have never wanted applause or accolades, awards or recognition.  Im a total introvert, those things STRESS not impress me. At the end of the day all I want is to have happy customers, accurate work and a clean pharmacy for the next day.  That is it.

And so, after trying ONE more time to post interesting thoughts and being not only disappointed in the quality of the material but the fact I doubt too many people even read me anymore because of the infrequency of the posting, Ive decided to sail off into the virtual universe.

So THANK YOU, for having taken this ride with me.

Blessings to you all.




And..the opposite of liar liar..

Filed under: Uncategorized — pharmacychick at 10:12 pm on Sunday, November 2, 2014

When you think that all my faith in human nature is broken by liars, cheats, seekers and abusers,  this happens.

And no, oxy guy did not come clean and confess.

Then phone rings and one of my regular customers asks to speak to me.  I get on the phone and she says ” Chick? you remember when you rang me up the other day?”  I replied with  an affirmative answer. She said ” You forgot one”.  She and her friend had about a dozen prescriptions between them.  Two older ladies, friends for many years ( maybe partners, I dunno) but when friend 1  developed early onset dementia, Friend 2 moved in and became her caretaker.  2 manages all of 1’s affairs, house and finances so 1 can stay home in a familiar environment as long as possible.

When we check people out, each prescription  comes with a plethora of paper. We sometimes end up with 3 sheets of paper for each prescription. Therefore with a dozen prescriptions there is a serious stack of paper. Obviously I missed one.  To my credit, most of these ladies’ prescriptions are in the single digits.

This one was not.

” You forgot to scan the Zetia,” she said.  ” $237.00″.  oops.  ” I am going to put a check in the mail and address it to your attention.  I couldn’t  just let that go”.

She didn’t have to do that.  I didn’t know I had forgotten that receipt.  In the pile of papers two receipts stuck together and one got missed.  But she is a honest person and felt it had to be paid. I thanked her profusely.


A few weeks ago, I left the grocery store with some toilet paper in the bottom of my cart that I hadn’t paid for.  I walked back in, and asked if I can pay for it at the courtesy counter since I had forgotten. They also thanked me. I also couldn’t ” let it go”.  Once, years ago ( when I was working  in my old independent pharmacy) this guy came in with a bag of peat moss.  The clerk hadn’t rung it up.  I also thanked him for his honesty and he laughed and said ” I’m not going to hell over a bag of dirt”

Maybe it was Karma that she called me.  Then again, we shouldn’t be surprised if people are honest, because that is really what is expected of us.  Sadly in today’s world we are more surprised by honesty than dishonesty.

It made for a good day.


Liar Liar pants on fire

Filed under: Uncategorized — pharmacychick at 8:10 am on Saturday, November 1, 2014

Its said that telling the truth is easier than remembering a lie.  That is true in pretty much every aspect of our lives.  Our deepest part of the brain would prefer to tell the truth because its easier. Pretty much every part of our bodies prefer EASY.  The truth is rooted in our unconscious because it actually  happened. The lie has to be manufactured.

We had a prescription filled yesterday for oxycodone 5mg.  The quantity was 60 and the back counted amount was 90.  One part of the label had 60, and the remaining inventory 90 was on another part of the label.  The tech flipped the two and gave the patient 90 and back counted 60.  He realized what he did, but the rx had just been dispensed.  He called and left a generic message at the home of the patient to call back to the store.

About an hour later I received the call.  The patient wanted to know why we called.  I would have preferred to not reveal all my cards so I said we wanted to perform a visual inspection of his medication because we believe an error was made. He wanted to know what kind of error so I said ” a possible miscount —” and before I could verify LONG or SHORT, and with no provocation whatsoever, he blurted out ” There were 90″ and I said ” EXACTLY,  and there were supposed to be only 60, so we would like to have you return—”

He  interrupted again went into total back pedaling mode… “um, I meant 60 I counted them , there were 60″.  I said.  ” You just told me 90 and I didn’t tell you how many I thought there was in there.  I believe you just told me the truth.”

I tend to give people the benefit of the doubt.  but this guy….he was caught in a lie.  His mouth blurted out the truth before he could fabricate the lie. He wasn’t budging tho and started rambling on how he mis spoke, and CERTAINLY he only got 60 and would bring it back to show me.
I said ” I have no doubt that if you bring that bottle to me NOW, it would contain only 60, but you told me you had 90, which is exactly the amount in that bottle  and I didn’t tell you if we were long or short.”  I wasn’t going to get into a war of words.  I had my answer.

I just said “I have to document our conversation, and will do so.  I will notify the doctor of the contents of our conversation and file it with the actual prescription.”

I really hate to be lied to.

My first endorsement : put your best foot forward

Filed under: Uncategorized — pharmacychick at 11:14 am on Friday, October 24, 2014

As a matter of practice I will not make an endorsement of a product because it may lead people to think differently about something they take or use for their health.  But over the last year I have used a product that I love and want to share.

Before you think I have become corrupted, it is NOT a pharmacy related product, a drug or medical device, or anything for that matter that you would put into or on your body to improve health.  Never the less, I love it and am gonna tell you about it.

Its socks.

Yes, Socks. the thing you pull onto your feet before you shove them into a pair of shoes.  About a year ago, my friend read an article in Wall Street Journal  about socks.  He’s a WSJ snob so he likes to share stuff with me that I might find interesting.  It was all about the best socks you can buy.  I was not particularly concerned about socks.  At that time I thought socks are socks. But I read the article.

On a whim I went online and bought two pairs of socks.  Kentwool  and Darn Tough Vermont Socks.  They are both high end socks and if you blanch at the thought of paying nearly 20 dollars for a pair of socks, you might as well quit reading now and go back to whatever you are doing because these cost for a single pair what you might pay for a dozen pairs of cheap cotton athletic socks.

First off they are both wool, MERINO wool so they do not itch….yes I promise they do not itch.  Wool itches me terribly and these do not itch at all.  And they come in summer and winter socks so you can wear wool socks all summer long.  Nope, not kidding about that either.

The Kentwool no-show socks were nice and puffy but they shrunk significantly so the size I bought based on the chart made me rethink buying any more because I had to seriously stretch them after washing/drying to fit over my feet. They were comfortable but the shrinkage I didn’t like

The Darn Tough Vermont were another story.  Made in Vermont they advertise themselves to be the best sock money can buy.  They have a lifetime guarantee.  Who puts a lifetime guarantee on a pair of socks?  A company that fully expects their product to last.  This totally delivers.  I started out with short socks for golf..then I went to crew for cooler days and finally to a full knee high boot sock for winter.  LOVE THESE SOCKS

They hardly shrink at all.  they come out of the washer/dryer looking nearly as good as the brand new sock.  They are sturdy and well cushioned ( I always buy  medium weight cushioned socks) and at the end of the  day they come off your feet looking as good as when you put them on in the morning.  They don’t stink, they keep your feet well ventilated summer and winter, Cool in summer warm in winter.  Wool does that you know if properly made..and these are the best you can do.

Seriously, if you want to feel like your feet are millionaires, then treat yourself to a nice medium weight pair of Darn Tough Vermont socks.  I don’t get paid by these people, I’ve never been to Vermont, and I never got any socks free to try.

I should probably be their rep because I love these much so that a few months ago I took all my old socks and turned them into rags and put them in Mr Chicks garage.

I liked them on Facebook and last christmas I put a post on their page that Everybody would want socks for Christmas if they got Darn Tough socks.

I got quite a few “Likes”.

keep your little piggies warm this fall!!



Sticker Shock

Filed under: Uncategorized — pharmacychick at 8:09 pm on Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Even tho Pharmacy Chick doesn’t write checks for the inventory that I purchase, I do keep pretty close tabs on what we buy.  The more we buy the greater the chance it may outdate and become of no value.  We move as much inventory as we can in a timely manner and if something quits moving we send it back.

Lately however I have been less and less inclined to buy anything extra especially since the price of some medications are skyrocketing.  Anybody notice??

Digoxin…Clobetasol….doxycycline….Acetazolamide….tretinoin…L-thyroxine…and the list go on.

Somebody is making a lot of money on drugs that used to be pretty dirt cheap.

And much Hell is being given for price increases.   ” WHAT?!?!  WHY IS THIS SO EXPENSIVE?” ” I USED TO PAY $X”

Well, Yes, you used to pay such and such…and now you have to pay much more than such and such.

The big question is WHY> and I have some guesses.  Mind you, I could be wrong, but could the fact that many generic houses are now owned by brand name pharmaceutical manufacturers?  They make the brand..they make the generic. As generic houses are being bought up by brand name companies, there are fewer REAL generic houses…and fewer choices. AND when one company jacks its prices up, you can bet your bippy that what few are left will follow suit quickly.

The discount cards haven’t caught up with this travesty so I won’t use them on these drugs.  If I do, I might sell a $160.00 tube of clobetasol for $20.  OOPS.  That is major shrink. Unfortunately some insurance companies haven’t caught up either and I am forced to take the hit because…well… thats what you have to do when your company signed a contract.

So there you are…one by generics seems to be falling by the wayside.  You can see the $4 lists shrinking by the day.  So sorry for the inconvenience, please do not kill the messenger. ( but of course, they will)


Ebola and Hipaa?

Filed under: Uncategorized — pharmacychick at 10:06 am on Wednesday, October 15, 2014

I dont profess to know every in and out of the HIPAA law but it seems pretty clear at face value that identifying a disease to a patient name is a clear violation of that law.  I would never yell out in a crowded grocery store ” Hey Mr John Doe, Your VIAGRA is ready!!”  but we have had the media report the name of people who have Ebola, where they live, post pictures of their homes and attempt to interview their friends and family.

Perhaps there is some provision in the law that HIPAA goes to the scrap heap when a public health hazard is announced, but it also seems like a grievous violation for a newspaper to publish their pictures,, their homes, their whereabouts, etc.  God help them already..they have enough on their plates trying to survive.

I have no problem with reporting that Ebola has been found here or there or that an Unnamed health care worker has been infected and let the hospital deal with it with proper notifications, but it seems rather intrusive to name names, addresses and go after family members like THEY have committed a crime.

Health care workers endanger themselves every day when sick people come to them for help.  Perhaps we have underestimated the power that ebola has and aren’t using as MUCH proper PPE ( personal protective equipment) as we should have.  Again, perhaps we shouldn’t have let liberian people into the US either, but thats neither here nor there at this point.



Courtesy that extends to the other side of the counter too.

Filed under: Uncategorized — pharmacychick at 4:36 pm on Sunday, May 4, 2014

As you might figure, being courteous is required in any job that deals with the public, as it should be.  we should be courteous people in every aspect of our lives but sadly we aren’t.  I am amazed at things I see while perusing the internet. Surreptitious videos that people have taken of other’s bad bad behavior go viral after only a few days on the net.  Insults are hurled in comments on blogs and news articles…fights break out on facebook and message boards.  I am not totally immune, as I have been known to snap back a bit at people who have made rude comments on my own blog…but then again, its MY blog. I own it.

That being said, in the pharmacy world, we need and should expect some courtesy from people who choose to do business with us.  I recently came to work one day to see a script in the auto fill queue for a lady’s birth control pill.  Last month she had called and complained that she didn’t like the new manufacturer we had given her.  Fair enough. We purchase on contract and that is our contracted item.  I told her I ‘d be happy to return it, and transfer it to a store of her choosing, as my options are few when it comes to contracted purchasing. We dont get to pick and choose our generics.  So, when I saw this rx in the queue, I did a history check and I noticed she never returned it.  I filled the script, and called her home to ask if she was happy with the rx…does she want this one..yada yada.  I got her husband on the phone.  “Yup, thats a question for her, she is at work, her number is 544-555-1212. “.  I called her cell, and got her message machine so I left as detailed of message I could do under HIPAA.  I asked her to call me back.  tick tick tick…After about 5 pm, I called her home again, and got another message machine.  This time I just reiterated what I had said earlier and said ” your script is ready as is, if you dont want it, please let me know”.

Never heard back from her. I just had to assume the answer was yes.

Is it too much to ask for a simple call?   We get rejections every day for insurance issues, and each of them is handled with a courtesy call to the patient requesting either more information ( new card perhaps), or suggestions to call the doc for substitution ( non covered items).  Most of the time I feel as if I have spoken into a black hole. Sometimes I will even ask ” did you get my call?” and often I hear ” yea, i saw you left a message, but I didn’t listen to my script ready?”  AARGH! if you listened to the message you would know its not ready..and why!

Last week, after sending 4 faxes to a doctors office with no answer and getting ripped a new one by the patient ( because obviously its MY fault even tho I left him a message telling him he may want to call the office). I called and left a message. ” PLEASE, we need this refill, either ok or denied.  The patient is being a bit of a jerk about it and blaming us and we both know we cant fill it without some kind of response from your office.  ”  About a half out later she finally called back and was snippy and rude to me telling me I shouldn’t call my patients “jerks”.  I told her I didn’t call HIM a jerk…he was BEING  a jerk in his behavior towards our staff.. and frankly it shouldn’t take 7 days to do a simple refill.. so is it approved?

We have our own guidelines of courtesy that we follow each day.  We make courtesy calls when we are out of stock on merchandise..we call when we need addtional information prior to filling a script.  We call when its not covered or needs a prior auth.  Any opportunity that makes it less likely to have somebody pissed at us is one I am willing to take!  But more often than not, I leave messages that are never returned.

I need customers to understand that we are not a fast food restaurant.  We dont waste your time because we dont have time to waste ourselves. If we call YOU to ask a question, we need an answer…and that answer will often decide when and if your prescription is ready.  Same goes for the dr’s offices…if we ask for some information, its not because we hate you…its because we NEED it…to take care of YOUR patients.. For instance, a patient with a mouth full of cotton brought me a script written for Norco.  No strength…Just Norco.  I called the office and hoped I’d get an answer immediately for this patient whose mouth was getting bloodier by the minute.  What did I get?  ” He is with a patient, we will call you later…”  LATER??

With the electronic age firmly ensconced in the pharmacy now, it sets us up for an entire new set of needs: E script clarification.  Ive had e scripts sent for massages, IUD’s , “Unknown drug” ( yea, go figure how THAT got sent), duplicate rx’s with differing directions… Multiple rx’s with different strengths of same meds.  Missing sigs, vague sigs, nonsensical sigs…etc.  Makes you wonder if anybody ever reads them before they hit “send”.  Each one has to be printed and sent back for clarification which sadly can take up to a day…when it really shouldnt.

health care isn’t going to get any fact its going to be more and more complicated as we move further and further into the future.  We have so many i’s to dot and t’s to cross that I have to make sure I’ve documented everything before I sign it off. And if that requires a phone call or a need for more information, the very least..entend that courtesy to us.  It will make for a better experience for everyone!

Blind Ambition

Filed under: Uncategorized — pharmacychick at 5:45 pm on Wednesday, March 5, 2014

If you have read my blog for awhile, I am more than just a writer about pharmacy.  Tho MOST of my content revolves around the practice of retail pharmacy, I am not that narrow of minded that only pharmacy is worthy of writing about.  You’ve read about my family, my dogs, my passion for golf…etc.

I am also in the “business” if you wanna call volunterring ” business” of dog rescue.  I stumbled upon this calling a couple of years ago, and since that time I have done home visits for potential adopters, transports, shelter pulls and fostering…..FOSTERING…the bringing in of a dog recently removed from a home or shelter into my home for a period of time, after which it leaves for its new FURever home.

Ive had several in this short amount of time. I am also a proud member of the Failed Foster Society…one who keeps the dog one was supposed to temporarily shelter.  In this case it was a 13 year old boy who had been dumped at the shelter because he was basically useless to his owner anymore.  Old dogs are hard to adopt because at 13 he is basically past his expected lifespan.  Once he settled in at my house, I told the coordinator that he can just live out his days here.  Its been over a year and he is a joy.  Useless to WHOM ? I might ask his previous owner.

Recently I embarked on an entirely new venture, one that even I have been nervous about.  I took in a new dog.  He is the sweetest dog in the world.  Rescued from a case of animal neglect he was left to his own devices, tied to a pole and left to sleep in a barrel.  At least he was fed.  But that was it.  His crime?  He is completely BLIND.

I have learned so much in the short time I have had my blind boy.  First, I have learned how amazingly adapable a dog can be.  In a very short amount of time, he has found his way around the house, navigated stairs, found the right things to pee on outside, and has made friends with my two other dogs. I am learning my own new things as well.  I have to use my ears differently and find myself hearing white noises I wouldn’t normally think about.  ” What does THIS sound like to BOY?”  He is startled by sounds probably because his ears are his eyes.  I think about the sound I make moving from room to room. I say hello before I reach out to pet him so he can know where I am in reference to himself.   He follows my voice so I walk in patterns that he can learn my home layout without bumping into things.

I have to look at my home differently too.  I look at things he can hurt himself on, like drop offs and stairs..  He loves to walk outside and unlike some cases where a taut leash is a bad thing, in this case he keeps a reference to where I am.

He is absolutely beautiful and perfect, except his eyes dont work.  We have a doc appointment with a specialist to see if it is fixable or if we can find HOW he was blinded.  It would be awesome if he was fixable, but the odds aren’t all that good.

Somebody will adopt this wonderful boy.  And they will be blessed, as I have by taking him for this period of time.

God must have known of my aching heart.  I wrote about my beloved who died in november.  Other than his little dangly thing under him,  This boy is the spitting image of my girl I lost in Nov.  So much so I keep calling him HER.

Amazing Grace, how sweet it is!

Nothing good happens at closing!

Filed under: Uncategorized — pharmacychick at 7:11 pm on Monday, March 3, 2014

True story. Setting: the pharmacy, 4 minutes before closing.  I can tell you from nearly 30 years of retail experience that nothing good happens from two things:  the phone ringing at closing time ( I dont answer it…right to voice mail) or when somebody comes up to counter right at closing ( damn, I am stuck dealing with that).

This guy comes up and hands my tech a beat up rx for tramadol 50mg. Pretty ugly since it had been written only hours before at the local ER. Conversation goes like this?

TECH:  Have you been here before?

PT: Yes. I have a cab outside

(tech looks up patient by date of birth and named as spelled and nothing comes up..(((.and WTF does a cab have to do with anything?)))

TECH: are you SURE you have been here before?  I can’t find you in  my computer.

PT:  well not HERE exactly ( rolls eyes at the tech), but in your  New Califlorimexiland…arent you all the same? My cab is outside.

TECH:  no we aren’t all the same but I can search for you in the network. ( searches network..finds patient)  ” found you,  is your insurance still current–state medicaid of NewCaliflorimexiland?” ( ignoring the reference to the CAB again…)

PT: yes. everything is current  ( insert dramatic music..impending disaster coming) my cab is waiting.

I come over , view the rx, am preturbed that after 9 hours of working that my growly stomach is going to have to wait even long as we finish yet another “at the finish line” rx….and unlock the narc cabinet ( tramadol is locked up) and politely say ” I am sorry you have a cab waiting but there is a certain amount of time you have to allott for this process”

tech spends WAY too much time typing rx and I know that there is a problem.  Thankfully the dude is a “hoverer” and didn’t walk away.

TECH:  your insurance says you were terminated Jan 4 2013.

PT:  You told me that last month and I had to pay!  I have “COVERITALL” HMO with New Califlorimexiland.

ME:  WE told you that last month?? are you sure it was US??  you havent been HERE before and our network has no rx’s for you since DECEMBER.

TECH:  yup, that plan is exactly what the network has for you, and it says terminated on Jan 4.  do you have a current card I can compare this to?

PT:NO. I dont have a card and maybe it was Big Box I went to,  ( getting pissy)  I dont remember!

TECH:  when you were told last month that your coverage was terminated did you CALL your HMO?  or your CASEWORKER? to let them know??

PT:  no, cuz they had to be wrong.

Tech hands rx back to patient:  TECH:Unfortunately they weren’t wrong …its terminated and there isn’t anyone I can call for you  on a saturday night. You will really want to contact your caseworker and find out if you are eligible or if they changed your HMO to something else first thing monday morning. Its 25.99 if you want to pay for it out of pocket.

PT: I dont have any money. I have insurance.

ME:  I am not challenging what you are saying, but here is your rejection notification.  Is there anything else I can help you with before we close for the day? We do need to close the pharmacy now.

He takes the rx and wanders off.

Here is what I take from this:  He knew there was a problem last month and did nothing about it on his own volition. He paid for the rx last month and wanted to gripe about it this month..  And since he has had the  rx for many hours, I suspect we werent the first place he went to, but ended up here because he didn’t have his insurance card anyway. He kept ragging about the cab even tho he had a cab voucher from the state ( he had it on the counter) so the cab was free, but I think he wanted us to feel rushed.

And I dont think he was much of a hurry or that broke because when I walked out toward the parkinglot, he was in the self checkout buying a 6pak of beer and some chips..and the cab was still out front.

Just more fun in the pharmacy….



The New Years Hate List.

Filed under: Uncategorized — pharmacychick at 6:55 pm on Tuesday, January 7, 2014

From all of us pharmacists to the rest of the world, I introduce the hate list.  Feel free to add to it (within reason)

1. To everyone who decided they DIDNT need a flu shot in the fall and now falls prey to media panic…we hate you….and your pissy attitude when we tell you we are now out of stock.  Where were you in October when I had literally 1500 doses sitting in the fridge…and lots of staff to help.  We are back to normal labor model and yes it will take an hour to process that shot….if we had any. Youve already told me youve been to 4 pharmacies. Why would I be any different?

2.  To the insurance companies fail to issue cards before the new year…We hate you.  And to CVS CAREMARK who refuses to provide that information to the customers over the phone ( only to me)  We hate you more.  Its THEIR information! GIVE IT TO THEM.  Do you really think I have time to call you 15 times a day to get processing information because your lazy processing department cant get cards out timely?

3. to patients who HAVE received new cards and dont bring them to me…We hate you.  Getting angry at me because I filled your prescription for cash because your plan terminated 12-31-13 isn’t going to change the price.  AND if you had checked your voice mail BEFORE traipsing over here, you’d have a very polite message from moi reminding you of that fact.

4. My employer to had a colossal snafu in the  computer system and wiped out 6 years of doctors information…we hate you.  It looks pretty stupid to have a doctor with a Tennessee address and a local phone number..which we cannot update because of some crazy national data base rule.   So technically we fill a prescription with inaccurate prescriber info.  Thanks.

5. to anybody who waited til monday to refill their prescriptions and wants it RIGHT NOW..we hate you.  We can do amazing things,  but not on YOUR time schedule.  we have to use MINE.  And 30 people cannot wait for their prescription and get it in 10 minutes. The first day of the week, first week of  month AND year is the perfect storm for all retail pharmacies.  Toss in flu mania and its ugly.

6. To ANY insurance company who requires transmitted information that is not on their card…we hate you. Yup, its you again CVS CAREMARK.  If you put a card with an ID  number of 00045321 and then verbally tell me I need 5 leading zeros instead of 3 then shame on you and every member of your overstuffed organization.  A big puss filled boil on all your butts.

7. And while I am having a hate fest with insurers, let me add this one more.  To you who require generic substitution but then charge the same brand name copay because its still expensive.  We hate you.  You aren’t making any friends with your clients or patients when their Cymbalta costs them 50.00 as a single source product but then 50.00 as generic too.  Sure, you  charge them even more for the brand NOW, but why not cut them some slack.. Generic is generic to them. We are happy to comply with your requirements but give us a reason to support it!

YOUR turn!! What do you hate this new year ? (pharmacy topics only )


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