Saturday, April 19, 2014

Friday, April 18, 2014

Thursday, April 17, 2014

It's Not All Bad

It's not all bad in retail pharmacy. It's mostly bad, but not all bad. Ok, maybe it's like only 98% bad and 2% good. Or maybe it's just Goofmart Pharmacy and the band of Ferengi I work for. Or maybe it's just my particular district. I'm rambling now.

But it's not all bad.

Just recently I had THREE people, on THREE different occasions, come up to me and PERSONALLY thank me for the medication advice I gave them a few days ago. I don't even recall the specifics. But they felt I gave them excellent counsel and they came back to tell me they appreciated it.

So yeah, it's not all bad.

A few months ago I dispensed an SSRI to a teenager. It was new to the patient and I counseled both the teen and the mom about the medication and talked about Serotonin SyndromeIt's a rare but serious possibility with drugs that affect Serotonin. I've only seen one case of actual Serotonin Syndrome in the past but I always mention it.

My counseling paid off. Later that week the mother called me to thank me because she caught the symptoms early with her teen and the hospital confirmed that he was genuinely affected by the condition and were able to treat him immediately. Because I counseled the mother, the issue was caught early and she thanked me over and over again.

So yeah, it's not all bad. Keep your chin up, fellow pharmacists. The company thugs we work for may mock us for not putting profit above patient safety, but you and I both know what's most important.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Actual Questions People have Asked Me

Apparently when you become a pharmacist, suddenly you know everything about anything, medical or not. We're the next best thing to Google.

Here are just a few of the many oddball questions I've received over the years:

* When will you hear back from my doctor?

* Is this covered on my insurance?

* Do you know if this toothbrush will cure gum disease?

* What do you think this rash looks like?

* What should I take with me on my trip to the Grand Canyon?

* Where are my children? [I have never met the lady or have any idea what her children look like]

* My car is going "thump thump whack, thump thump whack" when I'm going over 30 mph. What's causing that?

* I have an allergy to shellfish. Is it ok if I eat bacon?

* Where is your Viagra? I can't find it out here anywhere.

* Do you have any Viagra samples?

* May I have one tablet of Viagra?

* Why isn't this $4? Aren't all your generics $4?

* I'm thirsty all the time. [Then she just stared at me and never asked a question]

* This medication expired in 2009. It's ok to take it, right?

* Be honest with me. Is it cancer? [This is what Miss Loosey asks about every condition she has]

* What's the price of a postage stamp?

* How many Motrin should I take to stop my allergies?

* Is the ice cream on sale?

* Can't you just give me the Oxycontin now and verify the Rx tomorrow? [asked when I could not reach the doctor on a written Rx that was very suspicious]

* Can I have 23 amber medicine bottles for my science project?

* I have an "itch" down there. [she looks down toward her crotch] You want to see it? [She motions with her eyes toward the pharmacy waiting room]

* So, how hard is it to make meth? [After just purchasing some Sudafed]

* Where do you have your lithium batteries? [After just purchasing some Sudafed]

* Can I borrow your car?

* Could I have a sip of your water?

* Do you have a test that will tell me if I have a boy or girl?

* Is that lady that works in the meat department single?

* How about I pay you half the co-pay in cash and you just pocket it?

* Is it really too early for my narcotics? [she just received a 30 day supply ten days ago]

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

It's TAX Day, April 15


Oh, yes, it's tax day. And yes, the Federal Government does want you to pay your taxes.

Why? To pay for stuff. Trips for the first lady, White House dinners, parties. But here's where most of your tax dollars went in 2012:

Almost ONE-HALF of your taxes paid in 2012 went to ENTITLEMENTS. This is taking out of your pocket and sticking it in your neighbor's pocket. You may think you live under capitalism, but I'm sorry... this is socialism. If you're lazy and unwilling to work for yourself, this is how I feel about that:

And since there doesn't seem to be anything I can do about it right now, or you either, let's laugh a little:

I'll throw in one last little jab, one last snarky comment:

Sooooo... remember:

Monday, April 14, 2014

Natalie Norco Needs it Now

Natalie Norco was here again, just 21 days after she saw her "doctor" at the "pain management clinic." The doc must have conveniently overlooked her chart since he wrote another 30 day supply of medication for Norco 10/325. 

I told Natalie it was too early for her Norco since we had just filled it 21 days ago. She said that I should call the doctor because he said it was ok when she was in her office. I called "The Center for Strategic Management of Skeletal Pain" (don't you just love the fancy names for a prescription mill?), was put on hold twice, and finally put through to the doc's assistant.

"What can I help you with?" she asked.

I explained the situation. It's on day 21 of a 30 day supply and here's Natalie with another Rx for a 30 day supply from your office. I told the lady that I need to talk to the doc. I politely explain to her that typed on on the prescription itself is part of the "pain contract" and that it says NO EARLY REFILLS.

"Why do you need to talk to the doctor?" she asked.

"Because HE wrote the prescription. He's written 1 QID and after that, 'Take 1 tablet five times daily.' I need some clarification from the source," I replied.

"He's with a patient right now, but I'll have him call you."

One hour passes.

Two hours passes. Wow, that's a long consult with a patient.

Natalie returns and wants to know why we don't have her Norco ready. Upon telling her that we're waiting to hear back, she gets upset and calls the office from her cell phone. I get busy with other patients and then she's gone. Natalie Norco is nowhere near.

Ten minutes later the doctor's assistant calls back, says it is supposed to be one tablet five times daily but not to fill it until 30 days past the last fill. Ok, I can do that.

Ten minutes after that the doctor himself finally calls me back. I tell him that I just talked to his assistant but he wants to talk about it some more. Now he's changing it to 1 QID and then confirms again that I'm not to fill it until after the 30 days have passed from the last prescription.

I hang up the phone with the doc and the technician informs me that Natalie is waiting on line two to talk to me. I pick up the phone...

"Crazy, I just spoke with the doctor! He said it was ok to get it filled today!" 

"Natalie, that's really odd. I just got off the phone with the doctor myself. He told me not to fill the prescription until 30 days past your last fill. He said you should have plenty of medication at home from the last fill date, so I can't fill it until..."

<CLICK> Natalie hung up on me.

Nice try.