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Wednesday, June 29, 2016


I've long said that there are two classes prescribers are not required to take: Writing 101 and Math.

Quote of the week: "I'm going to allow you to do that math."

When I was a teen, I was allowed to borrow the car.
When I turned 21, I was allowed to purchase alcohol.
When I passed the boards, I was allowed to practice pharmacy.

However, I've never been in a situation where it was necessary to receive permission to do math. So it was with the voicemail I received.

Mary-At-The-Hospital-Lets-Everyone-Solve-Summations: Prescriber wants 12.5 ml twice a day for 10 days and..."I'm going to allow you to do that math".

I really wanted to call back MATHLESS and thank her for permitting me to do calculations, especially those required to complete her prescription. To me it shows a lack of preparedness.
YOU are the one phoning in the prescription.
YOU are the one holding all the information.
YOU are the one that knew you were going to call me.
Be Prepared!

It's like going to the grocery without a list.
Or ordering a pizza for 10 people without asking their preferences before calling.

I don't know what I would have done had I not received her permission to do the math.
CP: I am sorry ma'am, but I am not allowed to calculate a quantity on your daughter's prescription and the prescriber was unavailable to verify it for me.
Mom: But it's really easy. It's 250ml.
CP: I believe you. But the prescriber did not expressly permit me to do the math.

Nah. #WeArePharmacy. We specialise in fixing prescribers' errors. Here you go!

Thursday, June 23, 2016

If the Real World Worked...

Let's focus this story solely at a pickup location, the terminus of all transactions. Whether it's the pharmacy or a pizza place, once something is ready, you cannot change the order without consequences. In this case, the result is a longer wait. You have altered the terms of our interaction. Sometimes I feel like Lando facing Vader. "I am altering the deal. Pray I don't alter it any further."

Picking Up Something-Extra: I am here to pick up my pizza.
CP: Name?
CP: Got it. I have 2 large pepperonis, an order of BBQ Wings, and a 2-litre. Is that correct?
PUS-E: Yes. Yes it is. It's exactly what I ordered.
CP: Okay. The total is $22.49.
PUS-E: What about the garlic bread?
CP: What garlic bread?
PUS-E: I was supposed to have garlic bread. It's part of your meal deal coupon. I have it here.
CP: Did you tell us you had a coupon for a meal deal?
PUS-E: No.
CP: Did you ask for the meal deal?
PUS-E: No.
CP: Did you ask for garlic bread?
PUS-E: No.
CP: When I read you the order mere seconds ago, and you said "exactly", were you being facetious or just dim?
PUS-E: Huh? I want garlic bread and to use my coupon.
CP: Okay. We will fire up some garlic bread for you. It'll be another 15 minutes to get it ready.
PUS-E: But the game starts in 5 minutes.
CP: I know. I was hoping to listen to it on the radio. We've had orders coming in all night. Just ask all the people behind you who also wish to make it home in time for kickoff.
PUS-E: Your machine told me my order would be ready at 7:45. It's 7:47 and now I have to wait another 15 minutes? This is ridiculous.
CP: It was ready at 7:45. You've been arguing with me for 2 minutes trying to change your order. You are welcome to take your already-completed order, minus the bread of garlic, and hie thee home, tarrying not.
PUS-E: What about my breaded garlic?
CP: Your original order, as originally placed, is complete and ready, in its entirety, for you to take home and slam down your gullet whilst cheering on your favourite club. This transaction could have been completed minutes ago had you not altered the terms of our deal.
PUS-E: Well how much longer now?
CP: It's still 15 minutes.
PUS-E: What? Why?
CP: You've been arguing with me for 5 minutes now. I've had no time to walk away and place your order; an order you've yet to assent to me making.
PUS-E: I'll wait for it. But it's all your fault if I miss kickoff and if my food is cold and...
CP: Yeah yeah yeah. I get it. Next!

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

A Conversation About Nothing

Irritating Male Patient Adds Lots Extra: Did my doctor call in my prescription? 
CP: Yes. 
IMPALE: Was it Amlodipine? 
CP: Yes. 
IMPALE: Is it ready? 
CP: Yes. 
IMPALE: How much is it? 
CP: $0.00. 
Now, this should have been the end of the conversation. All of the finer, important points had been established and there is nothing else I can provide. As you can guess, there is much much more to this story, unfortunately...
IMPALE: Here's what happened: My doctor, well, really, my nurse practitioner, took a sabbatical and isn't in the office and my old mail order company closed so I needed a new prescription and someone else in the office had to send it in on his behalf to the new company and they sent my other 3 prescriptions there but somehow forgot this one and since the company changed I was afraid I'd run out with the holiday and all so I had them call it in to you. 
CP: Ok. You do know you can get it for the same $0 copay here without dealing with holiday issues such as this, right? 
IMPALE: Yeah, but I prefer mail order. They've always been so convenient for me. 
CP: Except today, on the Holiday weekend. 
IMPALE: Well...
CP: Today is Saturday and we are open until 7 tonight. When would you like to come in for your ever-such-an-emergency prescription that has been here since Friday? 
IMPALE: Oh, I should be there some time on Tuesday. 
CP: Thank you for using mail order.