I realize medication out-of-stocks are an issue and do happen. Unlike an advertised sale at a Big Box retailer that sold out of a certain TV or Blu-Ray, the situation in pharmacies is not likely to be resolved when the next delivery truck arrives. We can't give you a raincheck for a medication. Especially if we don't know if or when we may ever get it again. At pharmacies, it is a manufacturing issue, not an ordering issue. When we explain these shortage situations, especially harder to convey during an OTC discussion, many patients still do not understand. We are often met with:
Patient: "Ok. I'll just go down the street to Captain's Pharmacy. They always have what I need."
or..."How can you not stock this medication? I need it to live. You need to tell your manager she needs to learn to order better the medications people really need to survive!"
or..."But my doctor said you had it. He wrote specifically for this one. You can't call him to change it."
or..."Well you need to call around and find it for me right now. I can't drive all over town looking for this."
I feel like the customer in Monty Python's Parrot Sketch when explaining this: "It is no more. It is an ex-parrot. It is bereft of life. It has ceased to be..." I also feel like this when explaining that someone's insurance cards no longer work.
If you've not seen it, check it out here. If you have, watch it again...(start at 2:20 if you're short on time)
This is a very broad subject and can stir a range of debate. If I tried to hit them all, this post couldn't be read with your morning Java.