Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Printing Prescriptions from Home?

A lady brings in a script for Tramadol for her dog. I guess Fido was having a bad day. 

The prescription looked photocopied. 

I told her: "I can't fill this. It's photocopied."

"It's NOT photocopied. I printed it. The vet emailed me a PDF file and I printed it at home."

"This is for a controlled substance. Doctors and veterinarians can't just email prescriptions to patients," I tell her. "It needs a written signature unless it is sent through the e-Script system."

"Well Dr. Vet said it was ok."

"Dr. Vet is wrong. It's not ok. I'll have to verify it with their office."

I called the office and told the receptionist that we have a script that was emailed to the patient and printed at home.

“What’s the problem with that?” she asked.

"What's to keep her from printing several of these and trying to get them filled all around town?"

"Oh."

Monday, December 3, 2018

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

The Goofs of Goofmart

I have a lady that gets Xanax and Ultram for her dog. She’s been a problem patient for us before and I have long suspected she’s taking the dog’s meds, which, if true, is just atrocious. But I don’t have proof of course. 

Friday

The lady dropped off a script for Oxycodone for herself that had instructed us not to fill it until the next day, Saturday. She also had new prescriptions for her dog; Xanax and Ultram. I filled those. She paid and left.

Saturday

She comes in and picks up her Oxycodone. She's acting goofy. Really goofy. Her speech is slurred, both eyes red, and although I'm not exactly sure, but I think she left her cart filled with a few groceries after paying for the Oxycodone and just walked out.

Sunday

She comes in and asks for her Oxycodone. Again, she was extremely loopy. I told her she picked up the Oxycodone yesterday

“No, I gave you the script yesterday! Don’t you remember? It said do not fill until SATURDAY! IT’S SATURDAY! So I’m here to get it!”

“Today is Sunday. I filled it yesterday. You came by yesterday and picked it up.”

I had to show her that it was Sunday using my iPhone. She still wasn't convinced she picked up her med, so then I had to print out a verification page on the computer with her signature showing that she picked up the Oxycodone.

People! Please don't take your dog's medication.

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

I'd Really Like to Know

At some point in time, it happened.

I don't know if it was a gradual thing, or if it just happens suddenly. It's a curiosity, to be sure. 

I'm talking about when upper management, specifically regional pharmacy managers, buy into the whole management culture that pharmacy is no longer about patient care but instead it's just a business.

I've kidded for years about a secret ceremony where they pass around the Kool Aid and swear allegiance to the almighty dollar. 


But more and more I wonder, what is it, really? At what point does a normal, reasonable person say to themselves, "Patient safety doesn't concern me anymore. I'm in this for company profit."

In the trenches of retail pharmacy, we've been dealt quite a blow. When I first started with Goofmart, tech hours were dolled out based on script count. This was before vaccinations, Medication Therapy Management, Mirixa, Outcomes, Warfarin logs, monthly C2 counts, Medicare B rules, GoodRx nonsense, and other tasks/responsibilities that stretch the pharmacist thinner and thinner. And, I might add, that at Goofmart Pharmacy we were given many more technician hours for the same amount of work than we are today. And we used to get a bonus.

Today we're just expected to do more with less help and I haven't seen a bonus check in years.

As of right now, my pharmacy has LESS tech hours than ten years ago despite the fact we do MORE scripts than ever before AND have all the added responsibilities I mentioned.

This places a serious burden on patient safety. 

And I wonder, what is it? Why aren't the regional pharmacy managers and pharmacy director pushing for more technician hours? Do they seriously no longer care about patient safety? Is there a big bonus that those of us on the front line don't know about?

I don't buy into the idea that the company is struggling and that the "do more with less" is necessary just to survive. Pharmacy did just fine for 150 years without pharmacists giving immunizations. Immunizations are gravy. Whatever upper management is telling us, I just don't believe it. 

I'd really like to know what's more important than patient safety.

I'd really like to know.

Monday, November 19, 2018

It Should Bother You

Recently a lady came by to get her meds. 

She’s on Medicaid. Medicaid is for people who can’t afford their medication. The taxpayer (that's you and me) fund her medications.

In her purse sitting on top is a pack of smokes and a pile of “scratchers.” For those of you who don't know, "scratchers" are lottery tickets. They cost a dollar or two each, and she had a lot of them.


No matter how you want to look at this, what it boils down to is that she somehow has money to blow on lottery tickets but not for medication.

If this doesn’t bother you, it should.