Saturday, October 7, 2017

Flu Shot... DENIED

It was just one of those days, you know, where we only have one tech on duty and she has car trouble and can't come in for the day, leaving me to face the pharmacy, alone. Oddly, the company has plenty of money for gift cards when people transfer a prescription but not a dime for adequate technician hours.

If you're a pharmacist, you know this is a nightmare. It doesn't take long for the scripts to fill start piling up, one on top of another... people keep coming to pick things up, the phone keeps ringing, and instead of making any progress on that pile of scripts... it just keeps getting larger.

The lone pharmacist only has so many options. I do my best, but before long I give up on answering the phone. And people, the sweet, patient people that they are, just keep dialing back because that Lipitor script they want filled is just too damn important to let go until later.

Another option is to put off the flu shot patrons. I tell them I'm alone and I'll be happy to give them a flu shot, AFTER I get caught up in a couple of hours. Corporate wouldn't like this, at all. They tell us that a flu shot isn't any different time-wise than filling a prescription. Of course, we don't draw up a syringe, glove up, and go into a separate flu shot room every time we fill a prescription, do we? Duh, of course it takes more time you dunder-melons.

"Can I get a flu shot?" a guy asks.

The phone starts ringing...

"Not right now, I'm swamped. But if you come back in a couple of hours or on the weekend there will be no wait." 

This is my best DENIAL of SERVICE that I have at my disposal.

<ring> <ring>

He looks left, looks right, then says, "But there's no one here."

<ring> <ring>

"I have 20 prescriptions to fill for people I told I would have ready in an hour about an hour ago. I have about 30 to type, and 10 e-Scripts on the computer from physicians that likely told the patient it will be ready when they get here. I simply can't do a flu shot right now. And the phone..."

<ring> <ring>

The guy rolls his eyes and walks away before I finish. A lady walks up to the drop-off window. I can see she has two or three scripts in her hand.

<ring> <ring>

Another lady steps up to the pick-up window.

"Is now a good time to get a flu shot?" she asks.

I give her the same message. Her mouth drops open like I just killed a baby. 

<ring> <ring>

I raise my voice and tell the other lady at the drop-off window that I'll be right with her. I circle around the counter to the phone and answer it.

"Thank you for calling Goofmart Pharmacy. This is Crazy. How may I help you?"

"Can I come get a flu shot now?"


Anonymous said...

And heaven forbid you agree with a customer when they comment, "You need help!" after seeing you run around like a madman. When they ask & you tell them store mgmt tells you to cut labor hours & send us techs home, & they speak to the store mgr. Who then tells you "You're not working efficiently." No wonder I'm leaving pharmacy!

Anonymous said...

I had a flu shot at my pharmacy last week--it took 20 minutes for the pharmacist to do the paperwork, meet me in the room, and give the shot (my husband and I went together). I don't see how you can step away for 20 minutes to give the shot without HELP!!

On the flip side, I know giving shots are a terrible nuisance, but it it wasn't so readily available, I probably wouldn't get the shot. A few years ago my pharmacist gave me a tetnus shot after I stepped on a filthy dirty piece of glass. I might have skipped that shot as well, but I was immediately escorted to the pharmacy by my daughter where it was readily available.

It is a nuisance, I know, but the wellness you give is hugely appreciated!