Rules of the Pharmacy

06 Oct


Though I am now a Registered Nurse, when I use to work as a pharmacy technician there were a lot things that use to irritate me.  This was an old blog I had posted a number of years ago. I only thought this would be fair to not only my fellow pharmacy workers but to the educated and uneducated people who come to any pharmacy. I now present the rules and regulations of a pharmacy that all people should know courtesy of moi.

1. We are pharmacy not a fast food joint. Therefore don’t expect your prescription to be ready in five minutes. There is a reason why we tell you 10 to 20 minutes. Though the actual act of filling the prescription might only take five minutes the following can always occurs a) there are a number of prescriptions ahead of yours which most customers for some reason FAIL TO COMPREHEND AND THINK THAT THEIR PRESCRIPTION ONLY MATTERS AND NO ONE ELSE’S IS IMPORTANT b) the pharmacist might get a phone call from a doctor phoning a new prescription or a customer asking a question , c) the drug plan might go down therefore transmitting your drug claim to your insurance might take longer than expected, and so on. Do you rush your doctor when you are the clinic or doctor’s office? No I don’t think so.

2. The definition of a pharmacist are are health professionals who practice the science of pharmacy. In their traditional role, pharmacists typically take a request for medicines from a prescribing health care provider in the form of a medical prescription and dispense the medication to the patient and counsel them on the proper use and adverse effects of that medication. Pharmacy techinicans or assistants are pharmacy staff members who do job duties include providing medication and other health care products to patients. Pharmacy technicians often do the routine tasks associated with preparing prescribed medication and providing drugs to patients, and may also do compounding of medications. THEREFORE OUR JOB IS NOT TO a) do a price check on toliet paper, b) show us your rash on your breast or penis and expecting us to diagnose it for you, c) expect us to know what items are on sale and provide rain checks, d) do refunds and exchanges, e) know when the next shipment of Glade plug ins will be in stock

3. To further back up number 2, do not ask pharmacy staff their opinion on what best lipstick to wear or what perfume or cologne or what condom you should buy. You are in a pharmacy not on the Tyra Banks talk show.

4. When the pharmacist or pharmacy technician asks you when we ring up your prescription “Have you had this before?” and you respond nonchalantly “Yes I have” and then an hour later phone us asking us how to take the medication makes you look like a complete fool.

5. Phoning a pharmacy and asking questions regarding a prescription that you filled at another pharmacy again makes it’s challenging for us because we do not know your prescription history at your other pharmacy. It also begs to question, “Why are you not asking these questions at your own pharmacy?”

6. There is a reason why the pharmacy has large posted aisle signs above your head. SO YOU CAN FIND WHERE THINGS ARE. Do you walk into No Frills or Loblaws or Metro asking where the lettuce is or where the meat is?

7. Pharmacies particularly Shoppers Drug Mart has set dispensing fees. Please do not argue, bargain or complain that are fee is too high and we should give you a break. This is a pharmacy not Future Shop or Dr. Flea’s Flea Market.

8. Please understand that not every pharmacy has every drug stocked especially if it is a new drug or drug that is rarely dispensed. Therefore do not get your pants in a hissy fit if we might have to owe you or might have to order for the next day.

9. PEOPLE, there is a reason why there is indicator on your label notifies if you have any refills. If you know there are no refills on your medication, don’t wait until you’re on your last pill on a Friday night before calling us and expecting us to magically wave our wands and poof you will get your medication. It does not work like that. If there are no refills the doctor needs to be notified (and that is if they even do phone repeats.)

10. This one is particularly for the ladies. Ladies, ladies, ladies, your birth control has days of the week marked on them. If you see you are running low don’t wait until the last minute before attempting to refill it 30 minutes before the pharmacy closes or knowing when there are no refills. And no, we will not LEND YOU A PACK. I am sure your boyfriend can survive one night without docking his ship in your bay. Better yet, what about using condoms?????

11. Please also understand that when we call doctors to reauthorize repeats that they take some time to get back to us. Don’t think that once we call the doctor to authorize a repeat they will repeat right there and then. The secretary has to verify this with the doctor. Now multiply this by the number of other patients the doctor has and guess what? You have a long waiting list. That is why it might take a couple of days before they okay it. Asking us to constantly harass the doctor not only makes us look like a fool but it annoys the doctor and also makes you look like a desperate drug addict fool (especially if it is Tylenol 3.)

12. To all the muscle heads that consistently come into the pharmacy asking for 23 ½ gauge syringe needles claiming that they need it because they are diabetic . . .give it up! We know you are using it for steroids. (And a side note to the muscle heads, diabetics don’t use that size of syringes for their insulin.)

13. The cash register at the pharmacy is to only to ring up prescriptions or other products such as morning after pill, condoms, pregnancy test, etc. Please do not interrupt us while we are in the middle filling prescriptions so we can ring up your shopping list because you were too lazy go to the front or feel that your time is more important than us filling antibiotic for a sick child.

14. Please keep in my mind that the pharmacy staff are good with medications and are quite aware of what it is used for. Therefore don’t bring in a prescription used to treat an STI and lie to us saying that it is being used for a stomach pain. We know the difference and won’t look at you any different unless you make yourself look like a fool.

15. In Ontario, by law if there is an interchangeable generic drug we have to fill it. If you do not want it please let us know ahead of time. Also if you bring in a prescription and you want it name brand let us know. Please keep in mind that some drugs only come in generic form so you might have no choice.

16. READ THE PRESCRIPTION LABEL PROPERLY!!! Anything that says to take by mouth means to take by mouth. It does NOT mean to insert vaginally, rectally or in the ear or nose. Again ask questions before you take the prescription.

17. Gentlemen or should I say boys . .please take note. Though the morning after pill is now sold over the counter if it is sold kept behind the pharmacy we will not sell it to you unless your girlfriend or partner is with you. The morning after pill is not to be used “just in case something happens.” “Just in case something happens” is why you buy the condoms on sale in Aisle number 5.

18. Again to the gentlemen. If you are getting your prescription filled for Viagra or Cialis and you want to be discreet, here’s a tip: DON’T LEAVE THE EMPTY BOX LYING AROUND IN THE HOUSE AND THEN HAVING YOUR WIFE CALLING US INQUIRING ABOUT IT.

19. Not all products that you see on television commercials are available in pharmacies, particularly if you are watching a U.S commercial.

20. People, there is a reason why we ask if you have a drug plan FIRST BEFORE WE PROCESS YOUR PRESCRIPTION. We need this information prior to inputing your prescription. (This is more the customer’s employer’s fault for not educating them on this but) your drug plan is not like a debit or swipe card that we can swipe at the register when your prescrption is complete.

21.Too all human resource departments of customers please read this: Please research and educate THE CUSTOMER of their drug plan before they come to a pharmacy. Please educate them on what a deductibale is, dispensing fee and a co-pay is.

22. Respect the pharmacy staff. We know that you are sick, tired and already spent 3 hours waiting in the doctor’s office. If you waited 3 hours to see your doctor, waiting another 10 to 20 minutes won’t kill you.

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Posted by on October 6, 2012 in Uncategorized


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