Monday, April 22, 2019

The No-Win Scenario

It's inevitable. At some point in your pharmacy career, you will be faced with the no-win scenario... your own Kobayashi Maru.

It happened to me recently. I muddled through it, but the consequences have yet to be determined. At some point I'm sure this will reflect negatively on my career. 

But there was nothing I could do. There was no way to win. 

Let me explain the situation...

Patient Number One: An elderly, dignified lady there to pick up medications for her and her daughter. She happens to be black, and that's part of the story.

Patient Number Two: A complete jerk about age 40, never ever happy with pharmacy service at our pharmacy. One time he came to the pharmacy when I was sitting IN A CHAIR typing scripts and tech was sitting IN A CHAIR taking a break. The jerk wasn't happy that he wasn't helped within five seconds and made a complaint with upper management. The next day all the chairs disappeared from the pharmacy. I should also add that this jerk has made a number of racial slurs on occasion.

The Scenario: The elegant lady steps up to the counter to get her medication. She's clearly next in line as we have a workflow direction from start to finish... a "start here" sign AND an "exit here" sign. Only an imbecile of epic proportions would ignore the signage.

Seconds after the lady steps up to get her medication, Imbecile Jerk steps past the "exit here" sign and stands right next to the lady. I mean he's RIGHT NEXT to her, invading her personal space. She then looks uncomfortable because it IS uncomfortable. He's trying to push his way into being first or bully her.

In a split second my mind considers the possible outcomes of this encounter. 

* I tell the lady that Imbecile Jerk is next and that I'll be with her in a moment. Then she'll think I'm a racist when she was clearly next in line. This will affect all future interactions with this lady. I'll be branded as a racist when I'm not and race relations in the United States will continue to decline. 

* I tell the Imbecile Jerk that he needs to step over to the "wait here to protect patient privacy" which will infuriate him. He will think I'm putting her ahead of him. And HE WILL complain. In a normal world an upper manager would listen to my side of the story and dismiss the complaint. But we don't live in a normal world. We live in a world where upper management is also populated by imbeciles that accept any complaint at face value despite how preposterous it is.

* The lady and Imbecile Jerk interact and argue over who was next, causing Imbecile Jerk to throw out racial slurs and the whole thing will just be horribly ugly and at some point in the future I'll end up signing another warning letter because upper management will say it's all my fault.

I'm not Captain Kirk and I have no way of reprogramming the situation. In the split second my pulse quickens and I feel sick knowing there is no way to win. Oh why, or why did I choose a career working with the public? Why? Why have I chosen this constant daily punishment? 

In that moment of dread and fear I decide to do the only thing I felt I could do. I lied. I broke a commandment. Angels in heaven recorded it. Satan smiled as he prepared a special room for me in hell.

I told the lady that I was still working on filling her prescription and that I'd have it ready in a few minutes. She looked a little disappointed but mostly relieved to get away from Imbecile Jerk standing next to her.

I quickly grabbed the jerk's medication off the shelf. It's a zero co-pay because he's on Medicaid and he's off without saying anything (or signing our signature capture device because he refuses every time). Thank the old gods and the new ones in Westeros because Imbecile Jerk is gone.

When the lady returns I apologize for the behavior of the man that stepped up right next to her. I told her that the guy "has issues" (which isn't a lie -- he's a total psycho) and doesn't understand personal space. She was understanding and nice about it.

So did I win the No-Win Scenario? Maybe. But based on the bad luck I've had so far in this job I'm sure there's something about this encounter that will bite me in the butt eventually.

Monday, April 15, 2019

I'll Be Talking to YOUR Supervisor

Hello, Goofmart Pharmacy, this is Crazy RxMan, how may I help you?

"Yes, who is this?"

This is Crazy.

"I spoke to a gentleman the other day with a really cute name. Is he there?"

Mickey is his name. He's off today.

"No, it wasn't Mickey. Does he go by another name? Who else works there?"

I'm Crazy. We have Flynn and Tim the techs and Mickey the other pharmacist.

"No, it was a really cute name. What's his name?"

Mickey. Like Mickey Mouse. He's the only other person here with me and the techs.

"NO NO NO. That's NOT it. It was Tuesday that I called. Who was there TUESDAY???!"

Mickey and Flynn work here on Tuesday. Mickey works the entire day.

"Well it wasn't Mickey. I don't know what YOUR issue is, but I'll be talking to your supervisor."


Monday, April 8, 2019

@GoodRx Tactic: When Faced with a Difficult Question, LIE

When faced with hard questions on Twitter, Doug Hirsch chose to not answer the questions and then falsely accused your friendly neighborhood Crazy RxMan of threatening him, his business, and his family. 

Doug Hirsch, you're a creepy liar.

Dear reader, if you're a regular follower of the Crazy RxMan then you know I'm no fan of GoodRx. GoodRx adds a LOT of extra work at the pharmacy, adds time to fill a prescription, reduces profits at the pharmacy, fragments healthcare, and it's all for "amazing savings" that usually amounts to just a few bucks for the average consumer. And, most damning of all, it is COMPLETELY at the EXPENSE of YOUR personal, private, and confidential health information.

If you truly and honestly think that you're just getting a lower price at the pharmacy counter by using GoodRx without the cost being shifted somewhere else then quite frankly, you're naive. Nothing is free in this world. That cost is your private health care information.

I've written a number of blog posts on GoodRx. This LINK will give you a comprehensive list of EVERY blog post I've written about GoodRx.

A friend of mine on Twitter and fellow pharmacist, @GeekPharm, had an exchange of tweets with Doug Hirsch (@DougJoe) on Twitter. Doug decided to get involved with a discussion he wasn't actually involved in to begin with. Here's the brief exchange:

Here Doug Hirsch denies that GoodRx sells private information, but when specifically pinned down on the company's intentions with private and personal patient data, he deflects answering the question.

@GeekPharm tries to pin him down again, using a screen shot from one of my blog posts:

And again, let me explain to you that the GoodRx website used this exact phrase about your personal information:

"As we develop our business, we may buy or sell assets, and, depending upon the transaction, YOUR PERSONALLY IDENTIFIABLE INFORMATION may be one of the transferred assets."

This is NOT a typo. They published this on their website. It wasn't long after I posted a blog post about it that they changed their wording. You can use the Wayback Machine and dial it up! 

When faced with the screen shot, Hirsch ran like a scared puppy pissing all the way down the street.

And as @GeekPharm points out, he didn't deny what is (or what was) published on their own website.

And if you didn't catch it, Hirsch accused ME of threatening him, his company, and his family.

Hirsch, you're a miserable liar.

Once again, here is the LINK to EVERY blog post I've made about GoodRx. SHOW ME where I ever threatened anyone! I have not deleted any blog posts. Don't believe it? Then look on the Wayback Machine. It's a permanent record of everything ever posted on the Internet. And it will show that not only did your company publish the part about private data being an asset, it will also show that there is NO threat made by me to you, your family, or your miserable company.

People, when the CEO of a company defends their nefarious activities by making false accusations, maybe it's really time to legally delve into the matter and look at what's really going on behind the curtain. There's some seriously wrong things going on a GoodRx and YOUR personal and private health information is being bought and sold on the open market like a commodity. When faced with the hard questions, instead of denying it, the CEO tries to shift the attention first to other company's policies and procedures and then tries to make me out to be threat.

Doug Hirsch, you're a sad, sorry little man for making that accusation. The only threat I am to you is exposing the truth, and that scares the hell out of you.