Thursday, July 17, 2014

The Devil Inside

He had it figured out. He'll come to the pharmacy at 12:45 pm... during the lunch hour. No one goes to the pharmacy during lunch hour, especially on MONDAY. The place will be empty and get can get his script filled lickety split.

He hands me two prescriptions for amphetamines, one immediate release and one extended release. I type them in carefully before telling him how long it will be before we can get them filled. That's what we do.

I get paid claims and tell him it will be 15 minutes. I'm really doing him a favor because we're stinking busy and there's other scripts to fill... scripts for people who were before him.

"Fifteen minutes? I have to be to work at 1:15 pm. Can't YOU step it up?"

I have to admit something to you, fellow pharmacists and technicians. I have this thing about me. I'm going to be honest with you. I have a demon inside me. And when the demon gets pissed off, I can't stop him. He takes over my mouth and words come out. I can't truly be held responsible for the things this demon makes me say. I have worked hard to keep this demon inside and there are times when I am able to settle him down, but then there's other times... well I just can't stop him.

"Really? Really??! I have people ahead of you who are waiting a lot longer than 15 minutes. I'm doing you a favor considering these are controlled substances and require special handling and extra paper work!"

That is what the demon said, loudly I might add. At least that's the way I remember it. Mr. "Step-it-up" slinked away. I don't if "slinked" is a word, but that's what he did. He slinked.

I have since heard of people under extreme duress speaking in strange tongues. And in the past I have become conscious that a steady torrent of obscenities and swearing of all kinds was pouring out of me as I screamed... you know, because of the demon, but not this time. It was close, but not this time. 

(Apologies to Jean Shepherd ~ the demon made me type this).

Mr. Step-it-up came back in 15 minutes, collected his medication, and slinked away again. The demon is gone now... waiting for when I need him again.  

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

Good for you. That's what people need sometimes because, as I'm sure you know, some people do not understand anything else. I would be almost certain that if you had explained that to him in any sort of polite manner he would have argued. There is nothing wrong with making your point in a direct and efficient manner.

Anonymous said...

Good for you!

Anonymous said...

Agreed. Bending the rules is no longer simply bending the rules; people have come to expect special treatment or favors as the norm.

Thank you for standing up for all the other customers who may be patiently waiting, playing by the rules.

Barb Tracer said...

I had a guy who wanted me to bump him to the front because the others had dropped off and went grocery shopping. He was the kind that felt he was 'the most important man in town" I told him 30 min. He's "Do you know who I am", I said "yes and you can either wait your turn or go and find each and everyone ahead of you and get their permission to move ahead of them in line and then I might consider it" Otherwise 30 min!! It was killer :)

Anonymous said...

gee.... you must be old or VERY hip, you invoked the late great Jean Shepherd
Keep your knees loose

was1 said...

I think the past tense of slink is slunk. But I might be wrong.

@Barb Tracer... I told a woman once, "I don't care who you are. I don't care who you think you are. And I don't care who your daddy is." That shut her up pretty good.

Pharmaciststeve said...

We need to put up signs like at Disney World.. "your anticipated wait is xx minutes"... same thing with being put on hold when you are calling somewhere.. "you have xx people in front out you.. anticipated wait will be xx minutes" You don't educate/train the pts what to expect.. they will establish their own expectation(s)... which will normally have nothing to do with reality..

Anonymous said...

Impressive. And you didn't even have to give him a gift card!

FailedMetric said...

Frustrating situation. And I find it ironic that the common meds for ADHD (which can be thought of as a disorder of life management) require more planning and forethought on the part of the patient than meds used to treat most other common chronic conditions. Not that Adderall is "the cure" for ADHD by any means, but the Rx's you dispensed were intended to help him manage the symptoms he was displaying at that very moment.

That being said, I think your demon's outburst probably went a lot further than the meds toward helping him plan to give you more time and space the next time he shows up at your drop–off window. An unfortunate state of affairs for both parties involved.

And don't even get me started with what happens when bureaucracy gets in the way of bipolar patients getting THEIR meds…

Dave Walker said...

special treatment only for those bearing gifts of donuts or cookies...