Unfiltered Story #219137

, , | Unfiltered | December 25, 2020

(I work as a pharmacy technician, and usually am working the pick up counter. It’s slow one day, so I start answering the phones, as the phones are ringing off the hook. This is one of the calls)
Me:[pharmacy name], [My name] speaking, how can I help?
Customer: Hi my name is [gives name and address] and I want you to stop calling me.
(Our pharmacy is known for sending out a lot of calls, both automated and in person, so this isn’t an unusual complaint. As a result we mark certain profiles with a non-outreach message so techs and pharmacists will know not to call)
Me; I’m sorry to hear that, now what’s your date of birth so I can make a note not to call?
Customer: It’s not for me, you keep calling for a foreign name, **says some odd and long name, that I have no hope of spelling**, and that person has never lived here, and I haven’t used your pharmacy in years!
(Due to HIPPAA laws, I can’t just look up the patient profile, since that would be giving out personal health information, and is against the law.)
Me: Alright, so I can’t access the patient profile, but if you call [helpline that deals with customer service, including automated calls], they’d be able to remove your number from the calling list.
Customer:**now irritated** why do I have to call, when you’re the ones making the mistake?
Me: because we can’t just look up a profile based on a phone number, especially where you don’t have a full name, or date of birth, that’s accessing unnecessary personal health information, and it’s against the law.
Customer: But why can’t you just remove the number from the calling list?
Me:**realizing I’m not getting anywhere** because even if you did have the personal health information, it still wouldn’t stop any automated calls, the only way to stop those would be to call [customer helpline]
Customer:**groans** fine, I guess I’ll have to answer the phone and tell them I don’t use their drugs anymore. (note, answering the phone would only stop non-automated calls, this wont remove all calls. I also glance at pick up, and realize there’s a line forming.)
Me: Alright sir, have a good day.
Customer: Thanks for nothing! **hangs up**
(Fortunately, most other people I’ve dealt with this problem have been more understanding, and do call the helpline).