Monday, September 1, 2014

What Happened?

Why don't patients believe us anymore?

"Where's your Advil for children?"

"We don't have that. We have Motrin and a store brand right next to it. It's on aisle 7 there on the right."

The lady looks at me like I'm trying to pull a fast one.

"Advil and Motrin are the same thing... they're Ibuprofen," I add.

The lady raises an eyebrow in a Spock gesture, analyzing the logic of what I've just said. Instead of returning to aisle 7, she walks off.

Fascinating, I think...

<Later in the day>

"What do you have for diarrhea?"

"We have Imodium. It's in white and teal packaging there on the left. There's our store brand next to it."

The guy looks at me for an uncomfortable five seconds, then asks, "For diarrhea?"

"YES," I say, perturbed. I have things to do.

This guy also gives me the Spock eyebrow gesture, doesn't get any Imodium or our generic, and walks off.

<Yet even later in the day>

"My one eye is itchy and has a lot of discharge. What do you have for it?"

"You have an infection. There isn't anything to treat it over the counter. You need to go to the doctor and get a prescription for an antibiotic. You have 'pink eye.'"

He looks at me, raising the eyebrow over his pink eye, and asks, "But what do YOU have to cure pink eye?"

"We have eye solutions and suspensions. They must be prescribed by a doctor."

"So you don't have anything out here?"

Was I not clear on this, I'm thinking. "No, you need to see a doctor."

Man wanders off, shaking his head as he leaves.

So what happened? When did people start distrusting everything the pharmacist says? At some point somebody somewhere started thinking pharmacists were lying to them and it spread around.

We don't lie. We tell you the honest truth, sometimes even if the truth hurts.

Trust your pharmacist.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Doctors have a New Job!

Now doctors are PRICE NEGOTIATORS:

Ring... ring...

"Hello, thank you for calling Goofmart Pharmacy. This is Crazy RxMan, how may I help you?"

"This is Dr. Shatner. What's your price on generic Cortef 20mg, quantity 60?"

I fiddle on the computer. It doesn't have Siri.

"$38.00 on our club card."

"That seems high. I'll call you back." <click>

Ring... ring... 

"Hello, thank you for calling Goofmart Pharmacy. This is Crazy RxMan, how may I help you?"

Yes, this is Dr. Shatner again. Wagmart has the same thing for $28.80. CostLow has the Cortef for $26.50. What can you do now?"

"We don't match prices if it is below our cost. We hardly dispense that medication so we're not eligible for rebates so I can't match the price."

"But my patient wants to come to Goofmart. Come on now, what's your best price?"

"$38.00 on our club card."

"I'll call you back." <click>

Ring... ring... 

"Hello, thank you for calling Goofmart Pharmacy. This is Crazy RxMan, how may I help you?"

"This is Dr. Shatner. I want to call in that script for Cortef..."

The doctor calls in the script. After we finish the call, I don't hand the script to the technician. I already know what is about to happen.

<Ten minutes pass>

Ring... ring... 

"Hello, thank you for calling Goofmart Pharmacy. This is Crazy RxMan, how may I help you?"

"This is Dr. Shatner again. About that Cortef script... I was able to negotiate a better price with another pharmacy, so I'm going to cancel the script I just gave you on the phone, unless you can offer me a lower price..."

"$38.00 on our club card."


I shred the script.

Price negotiation is not a doctor's duty, nor should there be any price haggling among professionals. This is not the job of a pharmacist or doctor. What this doctor did was DEprofessionalize our professions. If I wasn't so busy bagging up people's grocery purchases at the register, I would have told him all about professionalism.

Friday, August 29, 2014

This is me...

This is what it feels like on Sunday morning when people are clawing at the pharmacy window to get their Norco...

Except for the bottle of booze. In my case it is a Mountain Dew...

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Don't Quit your Day Job

There's a reason why that phrase is out there. What YOU think is your killer, money-making idea may not really be such a good idea. It's best to stay employed with your current job WHILE you pursue your dream job.

Unless you're a Goofmart Grocery manager.

A friend of mine is a pharmacist at a Goofmart Pharmacy on the other side of town. He has (had) a manager over there that recently resigned from Goofmart Grocery. The manager quit his job, packed up the whole Fam Damily, and moved to the Big Apple. If you can make it there, you can make it anywhere! And what's he doing in New York?

Pursuing a career in stand up comedy!

So I figure there's one of two things happening here:

1. The stress of Goofmart finally sent him over the edge, destroying his ability to carefully weigh the consequences of such an action.


2. Working for Goofmart has led him to such a mass amount of "material" that he'll be able to make fun of the company for years and years.

Either way...... 

I still don't think he should have quit his day job.

Or maybe, just maybe... I'm jealous because he stole my idea.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

I don't need that...

We here it all the time. A patient will come up to the pick up window and ask what we have on the shelf for them.

"Your computer has been calling me but I don't know what it is I'm supposed to pick up."

We look on the shelf. It will be some maintenance medication like blood pressure or thyroid medication... something that we fill every month. And then we hear it...

"I don't need that it. I have plenty of that at home."

And then we answer...

"You should be just about out. We filled this about 27 days ago."

And then we hear this...

"Nope. I've got plenty. I don't need it."

Mind you, 99% of the time the co-pay is tiny... just a few bucks. There really isn't a reason NOT to pick it up, even if they really do have "plenty" at home.

But no, they're absolutely not going to take it today. But then a day or two later, here they are at the pick up window again, and we hear...

"Yep, you were right. I'm out of my medication. I need to pick it up now."

People. Always a barrel of fun.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Allergies to Everything?

So I have a son that's going to be in the 8th grade this year. His school, right in the middle of Snootyville, caters to every parent wish and whim. This year is no different. But what's the big thing this year?


Yep, the campus has been declared a "nut, milk, and wheat" free campus for the entire year. Not just peanuts... ANY nut. No more PB&J, no milk, no wheat bread... nothing... not allowed. Why? Because some parents have kids that are allergic to these items and they DEMAND that their child be given special status over every other kid in the school.

I find this really annoying. Before long, no food will be served or allowed on campus because there will be some kid somewhere that's allergic to it. Then what's next? Certain dyes? No more blue dyes? No more blue shirts and blue jeans because some child is allergic to blue dye?

Will the TSA be brought in to shake down every student every morning to make sure there's no Planters contraband hidden in a backpack or a box of milk in a girl's purse?

You know, there's reasonable and then there's unreasonable. If your child is deathly allergic to something, wouldn't it be better to have him/her home-schooled where you can control everything instead of asking an entire campus of 1,000 students to make sure your child isn't exposed to a peanut?

Shouldn't LOGIC dictate decision making? This "nut, milk, and wheat" free campus is not only impossible to create, it makes the needs of one or a few students more important than the needs of everyone else This is more liberal diatribe from a leader unwilling to lead correctly.

What a load of manure.