Facebook and Twitter

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

Friday, September 14, 2018

More Shot Shit

ME: Okay, CP. What was with the plea last week to gain more followers? 
Myself: Yeah. Was it a crisis? A cry for help? An ego boost? 
CP: Nope. The ego is quite healthy. It was to prove a point. 
ME: What point?
CP: Mind Blowing Thought: If no one is meeting the goals you set, perhaps the goals are unrealistic. 
Let's examine my request. I asked everyone to share my post on the daily. 
I asked them to share prior posts they enjoyed. 
I asked them to tag friends and beg them to become followers. 
I asked them to write recommendations. 
I asked them to do it daily. 

What happened?
a. My goal was too high?
b. Not everyone followed the directions? Were they not clear? 

“If words of command are not clear and distinct, if orders are not thoroughly understood, then the general is to blame. But, if orders are clear and the soldiers nevertheless disobey, then it is the fault of their officers.” Sun Tzu. 

Nope. Directions were clear. They were typed and people commented they understood. 

c. People just didn't want to follow me? 

d. Do they not like me?

e. Do they already like someone else?

Flu shot goals are unrealistic.

Tech scheduling goals are unrealistic.
The expectation that I could increase my followers by an arbitrary number of 40%, or 52,000 (when I average growing by ~300 per week) is insanely outrageous.
People will either love me or loathe me all on their own.
People will either get flu shots or they won't.
For some inane reason, corporations believe in the Field of Dreams approach.
ME: What's that?
Myself: If you build it, he will come.
ME: Oh.  
CP: Except in this case, it's if you ask them, they will lie prostrate before you and beg to be shot.
ME: Pharmacies really believe that? People will be so enamored by your persuasive suggestion that nothing can stop them from getting a flu shot?
CP: Yeah. You should read the emails. "It's all in the ask" was a favourite of mine years ago.
Myself: Let me guess, you're going to throw out some awesome statistics to prove what a Sisyphean task they've set out for us.
CP: Here goes. . .

What are your company's expectations? "Unrealistic" should be the answer no matter what number you give. Here is an example of averages in statistics: On average, 55-60% of the US population votes in presidential elections. The numbers vary little from elections after 1920 going as low as 49% to a high of 63%. It is fairly accurate to say voter turnout is ~56% every year since 1920.

As it regards pharmacy, let's assume the following:

On average, 42% of the population receives the flu shot each year. The numbers vary little year to year. This is, for all intents and purposes, a finite number. (And the number of the counting shall be 40%. No more. No less.)
Your company expects an increase in the number of flu shots administered by your store.
Where will we get these shots?
You can receive a flu shot from your prescriber, an urgent care clinic, in hospital, during an ER visit, from the fire department, at the county health department, any pharmacy on any corner in any town, or during any vaccination clinic provided by any of these groups. The needle has only moved slightly on that since pharmacists came onboard with the immunization programs around 2003. (A study showed growth from 35.1% to 40.3% from 2003 to 2013.) That's significant, but not a truly impressive growth since half the states adopted laws in 2004 and the rest took up to another decade to make the change. Since 2013, the numbers have remained fairly constant, with 40.3% rate in 2009-10 and 43.3% in 2016-17.
CDC statistics show that pharmacies are increasing in the piece of the vaccination pie but certainly not double-digit growth as the corporations seem to project.
Since the 2013-14 season where pharmacies were responsible for 21.9% of adult flu shots administered, the change to 2017-18 season (28.2%) has only been ~6% over 5 years.
Yet, somehow, employers expect each store to show growth larger than the numbers predict. (And some years, the numbers do go down.)

Myself: Wow. Where'd you find all the stats to back up your statements?
CP: The CDC. Based on our current population of 325.7 million people, and the distribution of 160 million doses of vaccine, the CDC doesn't even expect to administer to more than 49% of the population. Optimistically, if pharmacy suddenly were responsible for 30% of all adult flu shots this year (43.3% of the population = 130 million shots in total), we would administer only 39 million shots. Based on the 43.3% figure of last year, and pharmacy being responsible for 28.2% of those, we, as a group, only gave 36.5 million shots.
ME: So what you're saying is stop pushing pharmacists around with unrealistic goals and making them check in every day with flu shot totals. 
CP: Basically, yes. Or, as Godsmack put it: "I'm getting back, get back on track, get off of my back
I'm getting back, get back on track, get off of my back bitch"!

As I said earlier, "Mind Blowing Thought: If no one is meeting the goals you set, perhaps the goals are unrealistic". How about we just quit beating people over the head with pushy vaccination tactics and instead be available to administer them when patients want them?

No comments:

Post a Comment