Saturday, July 26, 2014

Some People Refuse to be Pleased

When I first started at my current Goofmart Pharmacy location, it took awhile to get to know the names of most of the patients. There's a few people that no matter how hard I try, I just can't remember their name, ever. Other people I had down right away. It's probably because I'm crazy. I don't know.

But there's one lady that started harrassing me about a month after my arrival. When I had to ask her name, she would belt out, "DON'T YOU KNOW MY NAME BY NOW?!" So then the next time she came in I remembered that she made me feel stupid, so I became stupid and couldn't remember her name again. So then she shamed me in front of all the technicians and other patients when she said, "I CAN'T BELIEVE YOU CAN'T REMEMBER MY NAME!"

That started some issue in my brain and now all I can remember is that her last name starts with W. So when I see her I just go to the letter W and look for her name. It's better than getting shamed again. It seems to work. But that's not Mrs. W's only issue. At one time we went through the automatic refill blues, ranging from "WHY DON'T YOU HAVE MY BLOOD PRESSURE PILLS FILLED?! I THOUGHT THEY WERE ON AUTOMATIC REFILL!" to "WHY DID YOU FILL MY BLOOD PRESSURE PILLS?! I'M SWIMMING IN THEM AT HOME!!"

The recent issue with Mrs. W is her husband's medications. She's not happy that she has to come by the pharmacy twice per month to get his medication. "WHY DO I HAVE TO COME DOWN HERE TWICE? WHY CAN'T I GET THESE MEDICATIONS AT THE SAME TIME?"

It took me a couple of months working with the automatic refill dates, realizing that there would be some surplus in supply at her home, but I was able to get the three medications filled on the same date. So when Mrs. W came in to the pharmacy the other day, I went to the letter W, found her husband's medications, explained that one would have a surplus because she picked it up not long ago, but that NOW she can pick them up all on the same date! Voila! I am the Master of the Pharmacists. Crown me with your appreciation!

Nope.

"WHY IS IT $80 TODAY?! I'VE NEVER PAID $80 BEFORE! WHY ARE YOU OVERCHARGING ME?!"

I almost had that cone of shame off, but no, Mrs. W didn't realize that she had been paying for each medication separately and now since she was GETTING them all on the same day, she would be PAYING for all of them on the same day.

What's your "take home" pearl for today?

NO MATTER WHAT YOU DO, PEOPLE ARE NEVER HAPPY!

Friday, July 25, 2014

One minute to closing...

She came sliding in...


"PLEASE DON'T CLOSE
THE PHARMACY YET!"

"I need my Norco!"

Thursday, July 24, 2014

We Don't Have It!

"Where is your [Product X]?" he asked.

"We don't carry that anymore."

"Yes you do! Where is it?"

"We used to carry it. After the remodel, some things were discontinued. We no longer carry that. Maybe you could try [Competitor 1] or [Competitor 2]?"

"You had it before! Are you sure you don't have it?!"

"No, we don't have it. I promise you I'm not lying about that."

"Well come out here and help me find it."

Now this is one of those situations where any normal pharmacist would just dismiss the guy, but at Goofmart Pharmacy, we live in fear of negative customer feedback and the consequent beatings that follow, so to humor the guy I step out of the box to "look" for something I already know we don't have.

"It used to be over here," the guy says.

"Yes, I know. It was right here," I say, pointing to where it used to be. "As I said, we no longer carry it."

"Why not?!"

"As I said, some slow selling items were discontinued after the remodel."

"Well why didn't you tell me that in the first place?"

Time to use the Stress Reduction Kit again:


Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Being Nice has a Price

Dude presents with an Rx for an Epi-Pen. He already knows it's going to be expensive on his insurance. Me, being the nice guy that I am... I tell him that there is a current offer ONLINE from Epi-Pen to take some money off the co-pay. 

I tell him, "Dude, you have to go ONLINE at HOME to sign up and get the info we need to split bill it. But don't just Google 'Epi-Pen discount' or you'll get some bogus discount thing that will just waste all our time." (I've been down that road too many times with people).

What does Dude do? He stands there at the drop off window on his smart phone trying to find the website. While he's looking, the tech and I fill his other two prescriptions. At least 15 minutes pass with him actively engaged on the cell phone trying to find the website. I love smart phones just as much as the next guy, but there's some things that are easier and faster on a regular computer. The tech brings up his medications to check out. We're going with what I told him-- GO HOME and find the coupon info at HOME and leave us ALONE. But no, Dude is going to stand there at the pick up window and clog our flow.

I pull up the computer. I type in "Epi-Pen discount Mylan" and there it is. www.epipen.com. First choice. Easy peasy. What's the problem? I tell Dude, "Ok, here it is. You need to go to www.epipen.com. There is a sign up form there you can fill out AT HOME and then come back LATER so we can process the info you get there."

What does Dude do? He slightly moves to the side to allow other patrons to get their medications. The next lady looks perturbed so the tech asks Dude to move out of the pick up area entirely. He reluctantly does so.

Dude continues on his cell phone for another 15 minutes and finally says, "I have the info." He then hands his bacteria-laden phone to the tech to put in the info. Despite all our efforts to get this Dude to go away and come back later, that was just out of the question.

What is the gem of wisdom for today? It's a two-fer!

1. Don't offer to help people!

2. These miserable manufacturer coupons are a REAL pain in the ass!


Tuesday, July 22, 2014

GI Elixir Number 1

At my Goofmart Pharmacy location we compound a special formulation for a lady named Hope. The doc calls it "GI Elixir Number 1." 

In order to compound GI Elixir Number 1, we need the following ingredients:

Donnatal
Lidocaine Viscous Solution
Maalox

For some reason, the doctor decided to send a recent e-Script for each part separately, including the various ingredients of Donnatal. One of those ingredients is Atropine Sulfate. I don't know if the doctor was just drinking or hallucinating, but somehow he expected Hope to hope that she could measure out 0.0065ml of Atropine for each dose... in the way he wrote it.

What a nightmare. Doc, get a grip, ok?

This is exactly the kind of stuff that drives us pharmacists to the brink of insanity.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Magic Mike

Magic Mike is an immigrant.

He's here from another country, and for some reason our country gives people who immigrate here special treatment. Mike is on state-funded Medicaid and gets all his medications FREE (to him). And he's on a bunch of them, all taxpayer-funded. You, me, and our children all pay for this. That's ok. I'm sure that someone smarter than all of us have decided Magic Mike really needs us to pay for these medications. 

I don't know... someone might ask why WE have to pay for all these medications when Magic Mike constantly makes visits to his home country (on the other side of the globe, I might add) but somehow can't pay for his own medication. But not me! I don't ask those questions anymore because people think I'm picking on Medicaid patients. Oh it's a valid question, but not me, I won't ask it.

Magic Mike has an American girlfriend. She pays for her medications because she is not on Medicaid and has a job. Oh, did I mention that Magic Mike doesn't have a job? Why doesn't he get a job? Because he's not "well enough" (his words) to get a job. Oh, he's well enough to travel but not well enough to get a job. But who knows all the details there anyway.

One day Magic Mike had to come in and pay for his girlfriend's medications... and that's when he started in on ME. Oh he waxed eloquent on how he never had to pay for medication in his socialist country and how it's just awful that his sweet ailing girlfriend has to pay for her medication here in this heartless pharmacy. Oh, Mr. RxMan, can't YOU do something to help Magic Mike's girlfiend?

I told him there wasn't anything I could really do...

And then he cut me off and started ranting and raving on how we're taking advantage of his girlfriend (despite the fact that I told him her insurance sets the co-pay,. not us) and how we should be ashamed of ourselves and how this would never happen in his home country... blah blah blah.

I told him again... there's really nothing I could do about it. 

Magic Mike stared at me for about 30 seconds, pulled out a gold American Express card, paid for her meds, and left.

<sigh>