When I was 12 years old, my mother was sitting in the passenger side of a car that got t-boned by a drunk driver. The vertebrae at the base of her spine twisted. She cannot have surgery— doctors refuse to operate for fear of leaving her paralyzed. She lives in constant pain. She walked with a cane…
First off, I want to say that I’m sorry that happened to you. I will admit that I did not watch the entire video (As it was 11:00 long), and I understand that some pharmacists can handle situations a lot more delicately than they do, and I’m sorry if you felt discriminated against or judged based on your age or anything else for that matter.
I do, in fact, work in a Walgreens pharmacy, so I am familiar with their policy.
They have recently implemented a new (much much more strict) policy that we are required to follow by law. The Drug Enforcement Administration (Or DEA) has started to crack down on not only the amount of scheduled drugs (such as Oxycodone or Oxycontin) that we receive but also who is allowed to receive it.
Now, I don’t know exactly what the situation was, what the pharmacist said, or how he said it, so I don’t want to make any assumptions. But I would just like to give you a bit of a rundown on what we are required by law to do. It actually has less to do with Walgreens than with the law.
When we receive a prescription for a class 2 or higher prescription we are SUPPOSED to: (I say supposed because, obviously, some people won’t follow procedure)
1. Check the patient’s profile to see if they have gotten this drug in the past 30 days. If the drug was picked up in the past thirty days at any Walgreens location, it is too soon to fill. We are legally obligated to deny the prescription on that alone.
2. Check to see if the drug is in stock. If the drug is in stock, we will most likely tell you we will work on filling it. If it is not in stock, we can’t order it. The DEA has told us that if we attempt to order more scheduled drugs than we are allotted, then we will be refused any.
3. Scan the driver’s license of the person dropping off the prescription, whether it is their prescription or for someone else.
4. Check to see what other controlled drugs the patient has picked up at other pharmacies.
5. Follow a checklist of things that follow ‘Good Faith Dispensing’. Essentially it means that if the patient has picked up a certain amount of controlled medications within the month, we are allowed to deny it.
6. If there is a problem with the prescription, we call the doctor.
6a: If it is too late in the day, we will call and leave a message on the doctor’s machine.
6b: If it is a Friday, we can leave a message, but we will most likely not hear back from the doctor until Monday.
7. We either fill the prescription or deny it and return it to the patient.
Now, all that being said, if the Pharmacist was just blatantly rude, then I apologize for that, and I’m sorry that he acted that way. But there is a chance that the law is not allowing him to fill the prescription, and he was just…well…saying it like an asshole.
No matter what, I’m sorry that you had such a bad experience at a Walgreen store. We’re not all like that, I assure you. I’m not making excuses for him, because if he was truly just being a jerk, there is no excuse. But I wanted to just explain that there is a lot that goes into filling certain prescriptions.
I’m sorry I rambled on for so long. I hope that everything works out for the best.
That’s the entire point; he didnt call the doctor, he made no attempt to be helpful, or polite, and when we went to complain about his attitude (because we certainly weren’t going to waste money there any more) all he told us was that things were complicated and he deals with people “like her” all day. If he had been polite or just said that there was a policy issue, it wouldn’t have been a problem. He didnt present it in a way that said his hands were tied, he couldn’t give it. He told me that he felt “uncomfortable” and wasn’t even going to check if it was in stock (which he later admits that there actually isnt any but he didnt want me coming back to check). I’m sorry that he poorly represents your store, and I know there are laws, guidelines, regulations…but that doesnt make someone a fucking robot.