Lets face it, pharmacists are between a rock and a hard place when it comes to new prescriptions. To be more blunt like this, we get bent over and the only choice is between what brands of lube we do (or dont) get.
Verbal Call Ins:
Usually from someone who has close to zero medical knowledge, these abortions of our profession are littered with “I think that’s….” or “Does … exist?” by some high-school student who is trying to decipher the same handwriting that took us a college degree to learn. Add onto the fact that most doctors are notoriously cheap (or foreign) thereby hire the bottom of the barrel staff who either know nothing, don’t speak English clearly, mumble, speak softly or all of these. Although I thought that having Methotrexate 0.2 mg called in by an OB/GYN was a mistake, it however didn’t take the office staff to say “Well I couldn’t really read it” when I called back to make damn sure they meant Methergine. Now only an idiot can confuse MTX with Methergine, but the point is still there.
Now there isn’t a good way to handle this short of having the prescriber him/her/itself call in. However, there are a TON of doctors who I cant understand what the hell they are saying, so we’re back to square one. The prescriber can however hire people who speak CLEAR and LOUD english on the telephone. However if their girls misspoke on the phone and someone dies, unless pharmacies have call recording software nothing will happen to the MD and his marble-mouthed liability. They will just show on the chart it was written correctly, taken verbally by Pharmacist-X and that’ll be the end of their accountability. Pretty sad to know that your career/livelihood is being held by some idiot who cant point to where her rectum is.
So, solutions? One is pretty damn good that I came up with all by myself (go me). If a doctors office has someone call in an Rx that you cant understand what the fuck they are talking about, tell them “Excuse me, but I cant understand a word you are saying. Is there someone there who can call in the Rx for you?” Sure you’ll offend the person on the phone, but both herself and the Dr should KNOW BETTER. If the Dr gets pissed, ask if you would like that person calling in Rx’s for his/her family. See, Dr’s like to get pissed off about things, but most of the time if you hit them with the logic bat (ie: ITS UNSAFE) then they can be pretty receptive. I’d rather hurt the feelings of some young “nurse” who cant speak the English than hurt the feelings of an entire family because she called in something incorrectly and killed someone. If we stand up and address the problem then it won’t be as big of a problem. If we just accept it and let them vowel-guess us to death then it’s just going to get worse.
Now not to belittle techs, but lets imagine a time when a Tech can get a New-Rx over the phone by one of these marble-mouthed idiots. Yikes! That right there is pharmacist double-penetration with no lube.
Because today’s society we are so afraid to say to people that they cant speak clear English. Some company (and computer programmers who have NEVER EVER EVER stepped foot in a pharmacy for more than 20 min) created ePrescribing (such as SureScripts)
I’m not going to go into how absolutely EASY it is for anyone who has ever worked in a doctors office to call in phony Rx’s. Hell, with how substandard the people calling in Rxs have gotten I would take a new one from an autistic dog for Norco without any suspicion (that’s if they actually called it by Norco, instead of Vicodin 5/325 *sigh*).
Seriously doctors, make your life and mine a whole lot easier (and safer for your patients), hire someone who knows what the fuck they are doing.
Touted as the next best thing since prepackaged drugs, the ePrescribing system is going to become mandatory in a couple of years. All doctors will be able to go to their computers, click away and have their Rx magically zipped to the pharmacy of their choice!
better and was just hammering out the Rx’s while my pharmacist sat around and drank coffee, I would fill that as Levaquin 750 #5 – 1 tablet 4 times daily. Thats what it says right? Now all of the pharmacists reading at home are giggling, the doctors are sighing, and the dentists are wondering what the problem with this Rx is :). Now I’ve been out of school for a while, so there might be some indication for 750mg of levaquin 4 times a day. Wait, there is. Its called WRONGITITS. Its called the QD and QID drop-down boxes were so close together that someone clicked the wrong fucking one and the Rx was verified and sent out (by the “Dr”). If a tech filled that and the pharmacist wasn’t on his game, that would of went out vs having the pharmacist on the phone saying “4 times a day? You’re on crack girl-who-cant-speak-english!” How would their software even allow that to go out with such a blantant mistake? This isn’t rocket science folks, certain drugs are commonly taken either once or twice daily. Its very RARE we see a modern (ie: still trade name only) drug that has to be taken 4 times a day.
Is there a cut and dry solution to this problem? Yeah, give pharmacists prescriptive authority like you’ve given everyone else with letters after their names. 🙂