Facebook and Twitter

and follow my blog on Twitter @pharmacynic to receive notifications on new posts.

Tuesday, May 1, 2018


If we can keep a copy of a patient's insurance card on file, why can we not keep a copy of their credit card? With the use of apps for refills and reminders, why not require a patient to keep a copy of their payment on file. I'd even accept a link to a PayPal account. We should take a page from the independents who used to (and some still do) operate with a credit system.

Do you want me to order an expensive medication for you? Sure. I will bill the credit card for the copay. If you pick up the prescription, the copay is applied. If I have to return it to stock, I collect the payment for the copay which should cover my return-to-stock fees and the initial filling process. 

Think of it in terms of a hotel keeping a card on file for incidentals. "Accidentally" ordered a movie and opened the mini bar? No problem. We will bill it to the card on file.
Missed the 7 voicemails, 6 texts, 4 letters, 2 emails, and the Stripper Gram we sent to the house over the last 13 days? No problem, we will bill your copay to the card we have on file when we return the medication to stock.
Now you want your medication after we returned it to stock? Time to pay that copay ... again. I do realise we charged you already but we are actually redoing all the work. This is a separate filling of your medication. If you were to transfer your prescription to another pharmacy, they'd charge you as well.

Other "incidentals"?
1. Copays for medications returned to stock.
2. Restocking fees on special order prescriptions.
3. Restocking fees on OTC products you had us order but never returned to purchase.
4. Exceeded your limit of phone calls for the day/week asking if anything was called in yet even though you have text alerts, we promised to call you, and we have carrier pigeons on standby? Incidentals.
5. First refill request/fax to your prescriber is free. Additional requests after one week? Incidentals.
6. "Can't you just look up my insurance information?" Sure. Swipe your card right here.
7. "Can you ring out all my other stuff too?" Sure. Everyone behind you wants to wait while you check out 27 items at the pharmacy counter. Please pay the Convenience Fee to me and the Annoyance Fee to those behind you and I'd be elated to help you.
8. Yell at my techs or staff? Cha-ching, cha-ching, cha-ching.
9. Want me to try 11 different discount cards to find the best price for you? Sure thing. Just know that it costs me money to submit each claim and it costs me money to reverse each claim. For each card I process, I will charge you $1.00 ($0.50 to process and $0.50 to reverse).