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  • Needs To Take A Chill Pill, Part 2

    | Sacramento, CA, USA | Health & Body

    Me: “Thank you for calling [Pharmacy], how can I—”

    Customer: “So I just requested a refill, and I want to know when it will be ready.”

    Me: “Okay, what is your name?”

    (The customer gives her name. I see that no refill was requested. The medication is out of refills, and needs approval from the doctor.)

    Me: “I am very sorry, but we must not have gotten your refill request. I see that there are no refills available. I am going to have to fax the doctor.”

    Customer: “I did that. I went to their site and asked the doctor to do that. It should have just given my request to you, and it should be ready by now.”

    Me: “So, which website did you go to? Was it ours, or your doctor’s site?”

    Customer: “His, duh! How can you be that stupid? I requested it, and you see that request, and then you just fill out the paper to give me refills. All the doctor does is sign it. It should take like all of five minutes to get that done. So when the h*** is my prescription going to be ready?!”

    Me: “Ma’am, I am sorry. We are in no way connected to your doctor’s office. They have their own software, and we have ours. We cannot in any way see what you have requested with your doctor’s office. We have to wait until he contacts us, and sometimes that can take up to three days for a response. Now if you are out of this medica—”

    Customer: “This is unacceptable! I know how these computer things work. You can look up any person’s prescriptions anywhere and anytime, no matter what pharmacy they are at! Now fill my f****** prescription!”

    Me: “Ma’am, there is no way I can do that. That would be in direct violation of federal law. There is a privacy act that means that we cannot share medical information with anyone else without your direct consent. Would you like it if I could access your medical record right now and see things like what you went to the ER for?”

    (Note: this customer is a notorious drug seeker, and is well known at ERs and Urgent Cares throughout the area. She also knows that we know.)

    Customer: “…uh, no.”

    Me: “That’s why we can’t see anything your doctor may have on you, or what requests you may have made to him. It’s to protect your privacy. Now since this isn’t a narcotic, I can ask the pharmacist if we can advance you some of your medication until we hear back from the doctor.”

    Customer: “Uh yeah, okay. That will be fine then.”

    (My pharmacist later pulls me to the side and tells me that I did a great job with a difficult customer, and with keeping my cool. Come Christmas time, I got a few extra bucks in my bonus!)

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    Needs To Take A Chill Pill