I don’t mind if a patient calls up and has a question (except if its when their vicodin is due). I will gladly put whatever I’m doing on hold to answer a legitimate honest question, no matter how trivial or stupid it is. I’m sure any pharmacist (except those mail order twats) would do the same thing.
However I do mind when patients want to talk to me to call in their refill numbers. Sure, take up the time of the most knowledgeable and highest paid employee in the pharmacy so you can have your numbers written down. God this annoys the living piss out of me.
Dear public. Little do you know that calling in your refill numbers to the pharmacist is the QUICKEST way to not get your shit filled. You see, every pharmacy has a system. The clerks take the numbers and put the little tags into some sort of delivery system to the pharmacists and techs in the back. We process the prescriptions, and hand the completed product back up front to the clerks for bagging. Calling in numbers directly to the pharmacy screws that system up. Plus with all the chaos that takes places behind the counter of any well-running pharmacy I’ll bet you any money that the tag that the pharmacist wrote your numbers on gets lost somewhere. Not to mention that throwing in anything that deviates from a pharmacy’s filling system is just asking for errors and mistakes to be made.
Plus, when a pain-in-the-ass patient calls a pharmacist up and says “I need all my regular medications”; 30 seconds later a doctors office calls in a new prescription. Guess what happened to “All of your regular medications” request that you so cunningly bypassed the clerks with? Yup, forgotten. Sure you may get mad, but when asked the question “Why did you not give it to the clerks?” you just stare at me with a blank look.
Aside from the reasons above, the non-candy-coated answer is that we’re too damn busy and too damn important to write down your numbers or hear you stumble through drug names. We have a whole lot better things to do with the $1/min most pharmacists cost their employer than to do what a $8.50/hr employee can do.
So whats a pharmacist to do when a PITA patient calls them just for refills?
- “Oh, hold on, let me get a clerk to get those numbers down for you
- “Hold on a second, doctor on the other line” Then wait 10 min to say “You know, a clerk can get those down a whole lot faster than I can”
- Hang up on them.
- Transfer them to Walgreens to bug their pharmacists.