"Where's the Abreva?" He asked. "It's on aisle 8, on the left, just as you enter the aisle," I replied. Now that seems like simple instructions, right? You would think so. IT'S ON AISLE 8: That's clearly marked with a sign right above it. It's the number 8. It's big and red. You can't miss it. In fact, you're almost in aisle 8 right now from where you're standing. ON THE LEFT: You have two hands. It will be on the side where your left hand is located. Seems fairly straight forward. Most people know their left from their right. As an added benefit, on the RIGHT side of aisle 8 is our American-made piece-o-crap blood pressure machine you've heard about. Obviously the Abreva wouldn't be there. JUST AS YOU ENTER THE AISLE: That seems simple to me. You walk into the aisle and you're there. No need to go further... it's right there as you enter the aisle. It's RIGHT THERE.
So what did he do? First he started heading toward aisle 9. I yell out, "Aisle 8!" He looks up, sees the 8, and then heads in the right direction. Then he's into the aisle 6 feet or so when I told him to stop and come back, "Just as you enter the aisle," I repeated. He steps back to the entrance of the aisle and turns to his RIGHT, facing the blood pressure machine. "No, your LEFT," I yell out. He turns around and there before him is the Abreva. Finally, success! And people wonder why pharmacists look miserable all the time.
Recently I received a call from a hospital wanting to cancel a prescription they faxed in. And rightly so... it was written for Levaquin 750mg # 30, one tablet by mouth three times daily.
The actual script was to be supposed to be ONE daily for 10 days. The prescriber at the hospital screwed up and someone caught it over there.
Fortunately the medication wasn't dispensed yet. I went to the will call and sure enough, there it was filled and ready for pick up. It wasn't filled by me or Mickey. It was filled by a floater tech and floater pharmacist, probably during an incredibly busy time when things like this can slip by.
Even with our long chain of safeguards, every now and then a huge mistake slips right on through.When a pharmacy is understaffed and the staff is overworked, THAT is when bad things happen. Goofmart corporate doesn't give a damn. They expect us to just deal with it and be perfect.
I've made mistakes over the years, none of which has been anything that's been a big deal. With almost all mistakes it's been caught before it ever gets in the hands of the patient. The other situations didn't cause anything even remotely serious.
But I wonder, will someday a perfect storm of events take place that causes harm to a patient? Will I be the last link in the chain of protection for the patient that fails? Will I be the reason someone gets hurt?