The Pharmacy Chick

Flying the coup in retail

Another round of flu shot follies

Filed under: Uncategorized — pharmacychick at 7:45 am on Thursday, October 29, 2009

Pharmacy Chick apologizes for not writing much lately. Between the nutso activity at work with flu shots, we have had a wrench thrown in with sick employees and way too many float help. That hasn’t left me with a lot of time to mentally (then  physically) compose posts worthy to have you read!  I hope you won’t completely give up on me.  I also have devoted more time in front of the piano, and that infernal Facebook…which by the way isn’t so bad…but its a time eater!

Tho likely not the last, here is the latest round of “flu shot follies”

But its the law!  Pharmacy chick does many offsite clinics during flu season and a couple of them are the equivalent of a public offering: all comers, first come-first served.  We have certain legislated parameters for who we can give shots to based on age.  If you are below that age, we can’t give you a flu shot. (note, when I make arrangements to come to these sites, my info packet includes these parameters so that there are no surprises).  Last week was such a “clinic”.  A lady came in with her OBVIOUSLY underage daughter.  She wanted a flu shot for herself and her child.  We explained the rules. “yada yada yada..rules..laws..yada yada yada can’t do it”.  You’d think the word LAW would deter her from pursuing it.  N.o.p.e.  She went on and on.  She offered to pay for the shot herself instead of bill the insurance..She offered to give the shot herself!  (poor daughter–she was no nurse or health care provider). She even said she would fake the birthday on the consent form.  Now I know that vaccine is in relatively short supply, but come on! This isn’t the cure for cancer..its a flu shot for Pete’s sake.  She went away mad..after she got her own shot.

No sense of humor At this point Pharmacy chick Pharmacy could use a full time person to do nothing but answer phones and field questions about flu shots. Of course, the company doesn’t support that notion so we are left trying to literally “create” time in a day to answer these completely redundant questions, all of which are answered on our IVR recording…that everybody bypasses to talk to a live person ….who tells them the same friggin thing.   Late one monday this woman came up to the counter and asked “Can I ask you a question?”  Trying to add a little much needed levity into the day, I laughed and answered “sure as long as its not another question about flu shots”.  Apparently she had no sense of humor.  She glowered at me and walked away.  Well, YOU have a nice day too lady.

No dollar amount high enough We do flu shots from time A to B.  Starting around 10 am and quitting at 7 pm, that gives the largest majority of people an opportunity to schedule their appointments with in their day. Despits this 9 hour window there are invariably some people who just can’t be satisfied.  I had one man come in at literally 10 minutes before closing and want a flu shot.  I told him 1) we do them by appointment only and 2) only until 7 pm.  Not to be put off, he offered a tool I hadn’t bee offered before…a bribe.  “So, if I pay you $50 will you give it to me now?”  I said. “Sir, you could offer me $500 and I wouldn’t give it to you now….first off, I am about to close and second off, I’d lose my  job if I kept the money so NO, I can’t help you now.”   Last year, I was in the store quite early processing a clinic I did. It was my day off but I had about 100 shots I wanted to get into the computer.  I was at the store about 730 in the morning. Dark and alone, and dressed in jeans and sweatshirt, I was ticking away on the computer, oblivious to my surroundings.  I heard an “ahem”.  I looked up and this woman was standing there. “can I get a flu shot?”  Unbelievable.  and lastly:

Are you sure I’ve had one? Loris, one of my long timers, is getting dementia.  Its not a secret.  She really needs a care taker, but as of yet she still comes into the store to collect her own prescriptions.  In fact, she is here almost every single day checking to see if there is anything here for her.  She obtained her flu shot early on in the season.  However, about twice a week, she comes in and requests a flu shot.  And about twice a week, we have to remind her that she did INDEED already get it.  Sigh. I feel for her…but I sure hope she hasn’t gone to any other walk in clinic and ask for a shot..They wouldn’t know.

Happy trails for now!


Comment by Dr. Grumpy

October 29, 2009 @ 7:49 pm

Good luck! Gets busy this time of year.

I hate people with no sense of humor.

It’s the odd jokes in the cracks that make the jobs livable.

Comment by The Ole' Apothecary

October 31, 2009 @ 9:54 am

PC, I think it would be best to stand on principle only. If offered a bribe, do the Nancy Reagan thing, and just say no. “No, I shall not.” Never mind what happens to your job if you accepted the money. In fact, I myself would call the crime (isn’t it some form of crime?) by name, and say, “No, I shall not accept a bribe. Our flu shot service ended at 7:00 PM.”

Comment by The Ole' Apothecary

October 31, 2009 @ 9:55 am

…and, you just inspired my next blog post.

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