Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Flu Shot Follies

We have a sign at our DROP OFF window which is big, bold and red and says, "FLU SHOTS START HERE." It doesn't matter. Over 40% of the people go to the PICK UP window. Of those, most say:

"What do I have to do to get a flu shot around here?"

And they say it with an attitude. They act like its completely unreasonable of us to be filling prescriptions instead of standing there all day long with loaded syringes in our hands waiting... waiting just for them.

So we ask them to walk down to the DROP OFF window. That's when the eyes start rolling. What they see as some huge inconvenience for them is just us keeping the PICK UP window clear for people who need not be delayed by people who can't read.

So its the same thing every time with a new patient: First I ask them their name. Second eye rolling. "Why do you need my information? Can't I just get a flu shot?" No, you can't. In my state, we need to get your information and file it away for seven years. It's a state board of pharmacy thing and they frown and make you retake the NAPLEX for the least little thing so you bet we're going to follow the procedure.

"Do you have prescription drug insurance?" is the next question. I'm not asking for fun. It's implied in the question that I want to SEE IT so I can BILL IT. But this is where the third eye rolling takes place. The answer is usually "Yes," followed by a long pause.




I stare at them. They stare back. 

"Oh, did you need to see it?" they ask.

"Yes, I need to see it."

Then the patient usually hands me their medical card. 

"No, I need to see your card for PRESCRIPTIONS."

"Why?" they ask. Eyes roll again.

"You're in the PHARMACY. We treat it like a PRESCRIPTION."


Sometimes at this point everything goes smooth: a processed claim, a sign out signature, a stick in the arm, and they're on their way... then I return to the pharmacy after a total of three minutes and see another person with an aggravated look on their face at the PICK UP window:

"What do I have to do to get a flu shot around here?"

1 comment:

Officer Cynical said...

This is how I would determine what gauge needle to use.