A lady appears at the DROP OFF window. They materialize there like being beamed in from the Enterprise.
"Hello, how may I help you?"
"Yes, I just moved into the area and I want to PICK UP my medications." (She's at the DROP OFF window... and you know how I feel about that).
So I'm thinking she's been in already and talked to my pharmacy partner Mickey and he took care of the transfers already. I ask for her name.
"Ok... let's see here..." I type in her name on the computer. Nothing. I ask for her birthday. Nothing. I verify the name and date of birth again. Nothing.
"I don't have you on the computer. Did Mickey get your information?"
"Who's Mickey? I just moved here. I want to pick up my medication."
"Well, Ms. Automatic, uh... I don't have you on the computer. Have you filled with [our chain] before?" I ask.
Ms. Automatic rolls her eyes. "Noooo, I filled my prescriptions with [national competitor] in [another state]." She's getting perturbed. "Why don't you just look me up on the computer and fill my prescriptions now?"
So now I have a clue what's going on. This is yet another patient that thinks all pharmacies are connected together and that you can step into any pharmacy anywhere and get your prescription any time.
I do my best to explain that no, there isn't "one" pharmacy patient/customer database shared by all pharmacy competitors and that I'll need to contact her old pharmacy and transfer her prescriptions to our pharmacy. I tell her this isn't something that happens instantly and I'll need time to actually do it.
Ms. Automatic rolls her eyes and this time sighs strongly. "But I was on AUTO REFILL at my old pharmacy. Don't my refills automatically transfer to my new pharmacy?"
This time I sigh. I try to think for a moment how I might explain this in a way which might be brief and make sense. I can't think of a way, so I just tell her, "No, I'll need to talk to your pharmacist back in [another state]."
"Ok, then I'll be back!" Ms. Automatic is a good 30 feet away from me before she hears me calling her back to the pharmacy.
"I need the name of the pharmacy and their phone number if you have it."
More eye rolling. "Really? Didn't it come up when you typed in my name and birth date?"
I give up. Seriously. May I remind you that THESE PEOPLE VOTE!