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Archive for the ‘the good – the bad – the ugly’ Category

Flu season is upon us, which means I’ve been sticking needles in people’s arms so they don’t end up catching the bug. Now and then I get people refusing to get a flu shot, some for good reason, others for reasons that I have no choice but to classify them in the category of STUPID.

Decent reason to refuse:
I had a family come in asking about our flu shots. When I informed them that it was an all-in-one dose that included the H1N1 vaccine (aka swine flu), they politely refused. They were uncomfortable with getting the H1N1 part of it, and just wanted the seasonal flu shot. I assured them it was proven to be safe, but I wasn’t going to push it if they weren’t comfortable…I’ll admit I was a little wary of the H1N1 vaccine as well when it first came out, just because I felt like it was released into the market WAY too quickly as a kneejerk reaction to last year’s outbreak. I’d say it’s a pretty good legitimate reason to refuse the flu shot.

Stupid reason to refuse:
I had a guy come in to ask about our flu shots. I wasn’t too swamped with work at the time, so I told him I could get him to fill out some paperwork, prepare one for him, and have him out in about 15 minutes. He exclaims “15 MINUTES?? For a SHOT? You can’t just give it to me?? Forget it,” and storms off. Listen jackass, if you went to your doctor’s office, you’d probably be waiting for 15 minutes just to have them call your name out before you even get a chance to SEE the poor schmuck that has to stick a needle in you.

Even stupider reason to refuse:
Some dude asks me about flu shots. Again, I’m not too terribly busy at the moment, so I tell him I can get him to fill out some paperwork and have one out for him in about 15 minutes…he tells me he’s in a hurry, but says he’ll come back the next day. In cases like these, I prepare as much of the paperwork as I can ahead of time, and have the syringe drawn up and ready to go. This way when he shows up the next day, all he needs to do is fill out the consent form, and then I can ring him up and pop the needle in his arm. He shows up the next day, and I’ve got everything ready for him. I give him the consent form and ask him to fill it out. He looks at the form and says “Oh no no no, I didn’t want to fill out any paperwork.” I politely tell him it wouldn’t take long, and that all he needed to do was fill it out and sign it at the bottom. He says “No no, I left my glasses at home…if I knew there was paperwork for me to fill out, I wouldn’t have bothered with the shot. I don’t want to waste my time on this!” And he walks away.

Uhh…I guess good luck on finding a flu shot that DOESN’T require some form of paperwork.

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Dear Mr. Former Asshole,

I heavily emphasize on the “Former” part of your nickname, because you have NO idea what you’ve done for me today. All the way back in January, I screwed up on one of your scripts…long story short, I accidentally deleted it, and that led to a frenzy of me apologizing for losing the script and frantically calling the doctor over and over (the office was closed, so it was hell just trying to REACH an on-call doctor for help) to get the script dictated all over again. I apologized repeatedly, took full responsibility for the error, offered to reimburse the cost of the medication once the error was corrected, AND gave a gift card for the inconvenience. You in turn chewed me out, and repeatedly called me throughout the evening to remind me of my screw-up, even after I had repeatedly told you that I was doing everything I could to make things right. I was already feeling down about the mistake (and it was totally my fault, I’m not denying that), but you were rubbing it in.

Fast forward 7 months, to today. That last incident has LONG passed, it’s pretty much forgotten, and I’m just doing my job as usual. You show up in my drive-thru to pick up your medication, and I get your script for you. You ask me “Do you remember me?” I say I do. You ask me “Do you remember what happened last time?” I give an acknowledging “Yes, but we’re cool now” smile and say “Yup, I do.” Then you do the unthinkable: you apologized. You told me about how around that time I screwed up on your script, you had taken another script to a competitor pharmacy (the location was more convenient for you at the time), and how they had REALLY royally f*cked up your script there. They had actually given it to the wrong person (without double-checking the patient’s identification information, AND without having the person sign for the pickup), and it was also for a controlled substance, which is REALLY big trouble when those get in the wrong hands. When you had asked them to call the doctor to verify the the prescription and to obtain a new one (since the original was given to the wrong patient), they half-assedly tried to get the other guy to bring back the wrong medication, and made half-assed efforts to contact your doctor. Apparently they effed up so badly that the tech who was handling the script actually got fired. You told me while the folks at Competitor Pharmacy were mucking around, you immediately thought about how you chewed me out when I was doing everything I could to get the script back so I could have it filled and ready for you. You told me you now realize how much of an effort I was making to help you out and make sure everything was squared away with the doctor before I filled your script over again. You told me you were sorry about how you acted, and how you were DEFINITELY doing all your business with my store from here on out, because we’ve treated you well, and now you know how much we do to make sure we get everything right.

Mr. No Longer an Asshole, you have NO idea what that means to me. Because not only did you apologize, you actually acknowledged that I was truly trying to help you out and to get everything back on track with your medication. That apology was already worth a pound of gold to me…those of us in retail NEVER hear people to say sorry for chewing us out (and we don’t expect them to), but you did more than that. You actually recognized the work I put into my job to make sure everything I provide for you is accurate and safe for you. Because amidst moments where I feel like the only thing I’m good for is counting by fives and pointing out where the hemorrhoid creams are, you made me feel like my efforts actually paid off. And for that, I can’t thank you enough.

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Dear Mr. LawyerAsshole,

Thanks so much for coming to my pharmacy and asking for us to transfer your prescription from a competing pharmacy to us. We really do appreciate your interest in using our pharmacy for your future prescriptions. What we DON’T appreciate is you being in such a hurry that you decide to take your old prescription bottle with you before we get a chance to copy down the phone number of Competing Pharmacy so that we can call them to get your transfer.  When I kindly called you to get the pharmacy phone number from you (which is printed on the prescription bottle that you took with you), you decided to tell me that I need to “focus more”, and you decided to inform me that it was my job to get the number. When I told you that unfortunately I don’t have a list of phone numbers for competing pharmacies, you decided to be a dick and tell me “I’m a lawyer, I don’t have them either. I’m not information, I’m not giving you that…it’s Competing Pharmacy at the corner of Street A and Street B”. Because if I were to ask you for a phone number for any competing law firm in the area, YOU’D totally know the phone number too. When I POLITELY explained to you AGAIN that I needed the phone number off of the bottle that you took with you in order to do the transfer, you refused to give me the number AGAIN (when it’s written ON YOUR FUCKING BOTTLE) by straight up saying “No, I’m not giving you the number!”, and then decided to be even more of a dick and cut me off by saying “I’m tired of talking to you, just have it ready for me by tonight,” and hang up on me. You’re just lucky that the other pharmacist actually happened to know which Competing Pharmacy you were talking about, and managed to dig up the number, otherwise I would’ve told you to fuck off, because no phone number means no transfer, and you would’ve been awwwwfully pissed off that your medication wasn’t ready because you DIDN’T GIVE ME A PHONE NUMBER TO CALL TO BEGIN WITH. Fuck you, and thanks for making me feel like four years of school has only earned me a Doctor’s degree in dealing with shitheads like you all day.

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Yesterday a red lamborghini pulled into our drive thru. This happened right when I was switching shifts with my pharmacy manager, and she says to everyone “Hey guys, there’s a really fancy car in the drive thru! Check it out before it’s gone!” While we were all oohing and aahing the flashy red lamborghini, two guys step out of the car. Then they pull out a tarp to cover their car. THEN THEY LEAVE THE CAR IN THE FUCKING DRIVE THRU LANE. My pharmacy manager shouts through the window “HEY! HEY! Who said you could leave that there??” The two dudes tell her with thick Eastern European accents “But it’s raining! We’ll be right back, just five minutes.” She tells them “That’s not our problem. It’s a busy time for us right now, and we need that drive-thru lane.” They ignored her, and ran away. Nothing says “I’m a douchebag with no regard for any level of human courtesy” like treating a drive-thru lane like covered parking. We call our store manager, and she runs out into the rain to chase after them too…she comes back in, and said by the time she got out there, the two dudes were already running off towards the gas station NEXT DOOR. I called a tow truck to get their asses towed, but they took their car back before the truck could arrive. My bar for douchebaggery has officially been reset. 😛

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There are people who make me want to quit my job:

While I was checking the doctor’s voicemails yesterday, Ms. McCrazypants showed up at my pharmacy yesterday, demanding to pick up her medication, and gave her name to Technician #1. Technician #1 was already busy with someone at the drive-thru, so Technician #2 was trying to be helpful and asked for Ms. McCrazypants’s name. Ms. McCrazypants snaps at Technician #2 and says “I already gave HER my name.” This pisses off Technician #2, but since we’re professionals, we keep our cool. We find that her medication happened to be the one that I had just taken from the voicemail, so I kindly told her that I had just taken it down from the voicemail, but we’ll get started on it ASAP. Ms. McCrazypants flips out, claiming that the prescription was called in 2 hours ago. Uh, no. I’ve been diligently checking the voicemails on a regular basis today, and there certainly was NOT a voicemail for you until about 10 minutes ago. I still keep my cool and inform her that either way, I had just taken down the prescription, and that I’d get started on getting her meds filled so she can be on her way. It turned out that one of her meds, an antibiotic, was temporarily out of stock. Even though she was being kind of a bitch to us, we were still nice enough to offer to call a nearby store to see if they can fill it for her. She says “I’m not going anywhere. I’m on morphine, and I don’t want to drive around (wtf, you only have strep throat, why the HELL would you be on morphine right now?). You’ll have to call the doctor to change it to something that you DO have. You’ll have to call RIGHT NOW, because they’re going to lunch soon.” This is pissing us off more, but I grit my teeth and politely agreed to attempt to call her doctor. I call the doc, and sure enough, they were out to lunch. I tell her they’re closed for lunch, to which she says “Well, I’m not going anywhere! So what can we do?” I tell here there’s nothing that we CAN do, because I HAVE to have the doctor’s approval to change a medication. She throws another bitch fit, and while she’s bitching, my tech is already calling the other stores around us to see who has her antibiotic in stock. We tell her that a store just 3 blocks away has the meds that she needs, and that if we fax the script to them right now, they can get started on the script and have it ready by the time she gets there. She rolls her eyes and finally agrees to go to the other store for her antibiotic…she says “The prescription was for 3 medications, right?”…I informed her it was for two. The doctor had called in three medications, one for an antibiotic, another for a codeine cough syrup, and another for pain killer tablets, with specific instructions that if we didn’t have the syrup, then we were to substitute with the tablets. Either/or, but NOT both. Unfortunately, there’s a big problem with people abusing the syrup, so almost none of the pharmacies in town keep it in stock anymore – including my pharmacy – meaning she was getting the tablets. She shoots me a dirty look and says “It was THREE. It was for a syrup and some tablets. I was there when he called it in.” My patience was slowly wearing off. First she comes in being a bitch to my techs before they even get a chance to help her, then she refuses to leave my pharmacy because she’s supposedly too doped up on morphine to drive around town (while she somehow managed to make it to the pharmacy just fine from the doctor’s office), and NOW she’s trying to argue with me about her doctor’s orders. This is where I dropped any tone of friendliness in my voice and firmly told her “It was TWO. Your doctor gave SPECIFIC INSTRUCTIONS that said if we didn’t have the syrup, we were to substitute it with the tablets. We don’t have the syrup, so you’re getting the tablets.” Then she starts making shit up. Because making shit up TOTALLY gets everything resolved. “But I get that syrup all the time! He talked to you guys! I was there!” I told her “He did NOT talk to anyone here, he left a voice message. That’s why it was on the VOICE MAIL.” As for her claiming she gets it all the time, a quick search showed that she’s NEVER gotten that syrup filled, EVER, at ANY of my store’s branches. Then she started making MORE shit up, saying that the doctor called and spoke to one of us first to check that we had it in stock before he left the message. Now she’s REALLY pissing us off. My two techs and I look at each other skeptically. I told her “No, there was only a voice mail.” My technician says “There’s only 3 of us here, and NONE of us got a call.” I shrugged and said “I don’t know who he talked to, but it wasn’t us.” She throws her hands up and says “Well then, what DO you have in stock??” At this point she had pissed off my entire pharmacy staff so much that we just wanted her to get the f*ck out, so my technician tells her oops, we didn’t have the tablets in stock either, as she was already faxing the script to the nearest store that legitimately had her antibiotic. We tell her the other store has everything that she needs, that we’d already faxed her script over there, and that they should have it ready for her shortly by the time she gets there. She finally storms out of my pharmacy. That’s when the REALLY fun part happened. It’s one thing when you hassle pharmacy personnel, but it REALLY takes talent to piss off the rest of the store too. Within seconds of her storming out of the pharmacy, we get a call from the front store. The cashier at the front says “Uh….some lady here says she wants the address to another pharmacy?” My techs and I exchange a “Are you fucking kidding me?” look, and we tell them she can come back to the pharmacy for the address. The cashier says “Yeah, we told her that, and she said she’s not going anywhere and she doesn’t want to walk back to the pharmacy,” but says it in a tone that says “What the fuck is wrong with this lady?” We tell them the address to relay to her, and Ms. McCrazypants had finally left the building. At least for that day.

Other people make me remember why I haven’t left yet:

Mr. Robert Duke (alias used) is an adorable little old man who’s always super happy to see me and my pharmacy staff when he comes in, and insists that we call him Bob…call him Mr. Duke, and he’ll exclaim “MR. DUKE?!? Please young lady, it’s Bob!” Hehe. 🙂 I remembered this from the last time I interacted with him, so when he came into my pharmacy yesterday, I immediately said good morning to him, and said “Hi Bob! You here to pick up some prescriptions?” He gave me a wide-eyed look and said “How’d you know me, young lady?” I smiled and told him it was because I remembered him from last time. He gave me a huge smile and said “Young lady, you just made my day! It’s not every morning that I get to talk to a gorgeous young girl, and one that recognizes me too! I feel like I’m much younger…like I’m 40!” Hehe, too cute. I rang him up for his prescriptions, and told him that his total would be $45.10. He fished out some cash from his wallet…he had 45 dollars on him, but was missing the 10 cents. I told him not to worry about it, and dug out a dime from my own wallet to put into the cash register…I figured it was senseless to send him back home just for a dime, and it’d make it easier for me to make change for him too. He took my hand, looked me in the eye, and said “Young lady, I can’t thank you enough, and I promise I’ll get you back for this, ok? You’ve got a wonderful personality, you’ve got the brightest smile I’ve seen around, and you’ve completely made this old man’s day.” I thanked him, and told him he didn’t need to worry about getting me back for just ten cents, and to just enjoy the rest of his day. This morning, while I was going about my usual business in the pharmacy, I see lil’ old Bob shuffle into my pharmacy. I walked over to him and said “Good morning Bob, you here to pick up more prescriptions?” He held up two nickels and dropped them into my hand. He grinned and said “I toldja I’d get you back for those 10 cents, and I’m always good to my word!” Then he added “And it’s an excuse to see that pretty smile of yours again!” I laughed and told him he really didn’t need to, and he tells me “Oh no young lady, I’m always good to my word. I made a vow with my little lady years ago, and I’ve been true to that too!” He pulled his wallet out and showed me a picture of his wife…I told him she’s beautiful, and he says “That’s my lady! Every day, whenever I come home, she’s always waiting for me, with open arms, and every night, no matter how late it is, when I leave for work, I always blow her kisses goodbye! We made that promise years ago, we’ve kept it, and it’s been just wonderful.” TOO CUTE. I just wanted to pinch him! I told him how precious that was, and how not many people can even say that these days…he says “Well, I think it’s just that nowadays people just don’t want to try anymore. They’re thinking too much on themselves instead of how wonderful things can be when you think of others.” I could’ve died. He gave me another grin, thanked me again for lending him the 10 cents, and scurried off. It’s people like that who keep me going at my job. At least until another Ms. McCrazypants walks in. 😛

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