Monday, August 31, 2015

An Open Letter to The Authorities

Dear Authorities,

Here at Goofmart Pharmacy we have to endure yet another round of $25 gift card offerings for new business. Just bring in a new prescription or transfer a prescription and we hand over a $25 gift card for the pleasure of filling their prescription. 

I'm not sure who thought of this business model, but he or she is an idiot. There's so few people that actually STAY with our pharmacy after a promotion like this. As I recall from a manager meeting, the actual cost of obtaining a new patient in a promotion like this is over $200 per new account. In other words, you throw out $200 for each new patient that stays with the company and gets his/her prescriptions from US from that point on. Is that actually the figure, or is it really higher than that?

Yes, there's a lot of competition in pharmacy. But the REAL WAY to compete is to provide top notch pharmaceutical services. It makes much more sense to stock the pharmacy with a higher inventory so that we're not constantly sending people away. It makes much more sense to keep adequate staffing on hand so that the pharmacist can engage the patients and keep the business coming back.

Seriously, as a patient... which appeals to YOU more? Are you so desperate you'll take the $25 ONE TIME to get a few groceries, or are you more inclined to stay with a pharmacy where the pharmacist and staff care about you, know about your medications and patient needs, and have the time to discuss your conditions and medications with you? Are you more likely to return to a pharmacy that didn't have your medication the FIRST time you came in or not?

Goofmart Grocery and Goofmart Pharmacy are not ones to ever blaze a new trail with stuff like this. If one of you Authorities will really just think about this logically for a moment you'll figure it out. It's pretty obvious.

Thank you,

Goofmart Pharmacists

Saturday, August 29, 2015


Women are a funny lot, especially MARRIED women. Almost all women, when they’re married, go out of their way to make sure you understand that status. Usually the giant rock on their hand is a big giveaway, but some still want to make sure you know.

Now I’ll be the first to admit that there’s a fine line between just being nice and/or friendly and flirting, but if there is any question about that in a woman’s mind, she’s going to let you know her married status as fast as possible.


Lady picks up prescription

Me: “What is your birth date?”

Lady: “12/7/1972.”

Me, trying to be nice: “Well you look really good for your age.”

Lady: “That’s what my HUSBAND says too!” (emphasis added).

Consequently, any future interaction with this lady will now include flashing the left hand around and/or mentioning the husband in some way.

One time I had to call a lady about a vaginal medication. So when she answered the phone, I verified that it was her and told her who I am, then said:

“I need to ask you a personal question.”

Lady: “Oh… well.... my husband is right here, let me put you on speaker phone.”

So we conducted the discussion within earshot of her husband. Apparently in her relationship, all personal questions are addressed as a couple. Damn, there went my new strategy to hit on women by talking about their vaginal products.

Another lady… and this one I don’t understand at all… she’s about my age, and I admit I was in the habit of flirting with her. After about the third time she was in, she told me that she was married and that she’ll have to have her single sister come in and see me because I’m such a nice guy. There must be 10 million of these “single sisters” out there somewhere, but I’ve yet to actually meet one. So I stopped flirting with the lady. She mentioned the husband and that’s announcing to the world LEAVE ME ALONE. So I did.

Now when she comes in, though… she acts hugely disappointed that I’m not flirting with her anymore. She’ll even try to throw me a line to try and get it out of me:


Lady: “I had my hair done. What do you think?”

Me: “Oh I didn’t notice.”

Lady: <crest fallen>

Friday, August 28, 2015

This is me...

Being a puppet for The Authorities...



Play the song below to make
the kitty come alive with music...

I really miss Hawai'i

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Random Observation: Math is Hard

My patient had been taking L-Thyroxine 50mcg daily for several years. A new Rx for 75mcg gets faxed over to the pharmacy. I fill it. Patient comes in to pick up med. I verify that the dose has been increased. She affirms the dose increase.

Then I did it. I blew her mind. I said, "I see by your profile that you still have many of the 50mcg tablets at home, is that correct?" She affirms that she has several in the bottle. So then, stupid me, I suggest she can use those up by taking 1 & 1/2 tablets of the 50mcg to use them up. She looks baffled. I confirm that she has 50mcg tablets at home. She says yes. I tell her if she was to take one tablet and half of another tablet that would equal 75mcg and she can use up her old medication before she starts in on the new bottle of 75mcg. She looks worried, confused, upset, and sad all at the same time. So I give up and tell her to just throw away the old bottle of 50mcg and start taking the 75mcg. She looks relieved and happy.

Pharmacists: We do the math so you don't have to.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

The FUTURE Pharmacy

Eventually, all co-pays will be zero. 

We see it now with birth control and a lot of Medicare patient medications. Once we're all on government assistance with the New World Order, all co-pays will be reduced to zero. Reimbursements from the government will fall below the cost to fill the medication as mandated by law. Pharmacies will fail to make a profit. Many will close. The remaining ones will be taken over by the government... one by one, until all pharmacies are government-run. 

There will be no more brand medication and no incentive to create new drugs because there will be no profit. Without profit, no one will invest in drug development. The only drugs available will be shoddy generics, and the government will only allow the purchase of the cheapest of the cheap in their newly owned pharmacies. 

Getting medications filled within minutes, or even the same day, will be a relic of the past. Without any incentive to work, your pharmacist and technicians will move just slightly faster than your local worker at the post office or DMV. We'll all have that same expression on our face... dull, tired, and worn out. 

Without new drugs... and consequently new antibiotics, bacteria will mutate... and will get stronger and tougher to kill. More people will die because there will be no incentive to create better drugs.

Eventually, we'll all die from a Super Bug, all because YOU demanded a zero co-pay.

Monday, August 24, 2015

A Life of Quiet Desperation

If you're a pharmacist or pharmacy technician, here's something that's probably happened to you. It doesn't happen very often, but it is ANNOYING.

Your post modern computer running the latest version of Windows pops up with some new e-scripts. Quickly, you massage the data into your system, adjudicate, print, and fill. These were prescriptions sent over from the prescriber to your pharmacy. Time is of the essence, man! The patient desperately needs these medications, and if you work in Snootyville like I do, the patient is already on the way.

And then it happens... the patient arrives. You're feeling good because you have everything ready to go, ahead of schedule. Crisis adverted. The patient will be happy. The prescriber will be happy. All is good and right with the world. They will sing songs of our courage and bravery through all of Westeros...

...but wait. Seven Hells, the patient doesn't want all the medications. In fact, she only wants ONE of them. "Oh, I don't need all those. I only need the one for anxiety," she will say. 

"But why did the doctor send all these prescriptions over here if you didn't want them filled?" you will ask.

"I just want them to be on record for when I want them," she will reply.

"But you do know that when prescriptions get sent over electronically, we're going to fill them, right?" you will ask. "That's what we do here."

"Yes, I know," she will say, picking up her Medicaid-paid zero co-pay anxiety med and then skip her way down the aisle like Dorothy on the Yellow Brick Road.

Poor pharmacist. 

This is why most pharmacists have lost all personality. We're a sorry lot. Most don't smile, for the mass of pharmacists lead lives of quiet desperation. What is called resignation is confirmed desperation. A stereotyped but unconscious despair is concealed even under what are called the games and amusements of mankind. There is no play in them, for this comes after work. But it is a characteristic of wisdom not to do desperate things. They sing not, and for those that never sing, they die with all their music in them.

Apologies to Henry David Thoreau and Oliver Wendell Holmes.