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Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Take a number

At my pharmacy in the phuture...
...Now calling Number 27. Number 27? 27? Anyone #27? No? Okay, Number 28. Number 28? 

I'm torn. We should either go full-out deli counter or lottery ticket luck for our wait times. 
1. Deli Counter/DMV-find the red ticket machine, take a number, sit down. When your number is called, come to the counter and drop off your prescription. We will process it right in front of you. This includes data entry and insurance billing only. Hold on to your ticket and have a seat. When the actual filling and checking process have been completed, we will recall you to the checkout station. 

2a. Lottery System: We will place random wait times in a hat. They will be weighted according to our approximate wait times and may fluctuate hourly. They will be represented as follows:
 2 tickets---10 minutes
 3 tickets---15 minutes
15 tickets---30 minutes
50 tickets---45 minutes
100 tickets--tomorrow

2b. Carnival!: We will have a dart board with balloons covering little tickets with times. Pay a fee, throw a dart, get your wait time. Here's your prize! Done. If successful, we could expand to a pond with little rubber duckies. Kids could play while you wait. Imagine how fast that 45 minute wait time will seem while your little darling is splashing around trying to win a goldfish. Ah, the joy! 

Since I'm a friendly pillar of the community and everyone loves me, there will obviously be a game for emergency waiters. If your prescription meets the criteria laid out clearly at the kiosk (*), you will have 2 choices for wait times: 6 minutes or 11 minutes. 
(*some restrictions apply--must be for a sick child, an antibiotic, from an ER or a hospital discharge, must be written the same day. Applicable exemptions may occur and final say rests solely with the carnival barker, um, pharmacist.)

Maybe we could employ all of these. Let's make the pharmacy a destination for the whole family. Young, old, well, infirm; bring them all. Watch as the pharmacist and staff juggle bottles and perform amazing tricks with their samurai spatulas and acerbic wit. 


  1. I've always said it's only a matter of time before the pharmacy turns into a bar show. Techs flipping pill bottles, counting in mid air. There could be some profit in it, so I'm surprised some chain hasn't jumped yet.

  2. Ha. Guess what? Pharmacists in Israel already use numbers system. Walk in, take a number,, and don't even bother to jump in front of everyone with your imaginary waiter, cause your number is not up.