The Joys of Social Workers

In this world, there are two types of social workers:

  • The ones you never see or hear about.  The one that the patient calls and they get the shit done fast.  The only time you actually speak with them is a 5 second phone call with an ID/Group/etc number and a “did it work?”.  Pharmacists love these kind of social workers.
  • The social workers that are not like the above group which I will elaborate below.

Every profession has its fair share of idiots.  There are idiot pharmacists, idiot doctors, idiot bus drivers and idiot ditch diggers.  The only exception to this rule is patients, which they are all idiots. 🙂

However social workers seem to collect and concentrate the “duh”.  The social workers that make their presence known to pharmacists turn out to be the most incompetent, inept, and whiny people on the planet.  They are like like Steve Urkel (“Diiiiiiid I do that?”) of the health care world, out to do good, but end up pissing people off/making it worse in the end.  A whining contest between a crackhead and a social worker? I’ll let you guess who wins. Here is a conversation I had recently with a wonderful social worker:

SocialWorker: “Hi! I’m Billy and I’m a social worker”

TheAngryPharmacist: “Hi billy”

SW: “I got a call from John Smith who said that his Zyvox was not covered and he would have to pay for it”

TAP: “Yeah, his insurance doesn’t cover Zyvox withou-”

SW: “BUT HE IS ILL AND HE NEEDS THAT MEDICATION!”

TAP: *sigh*

SW: “HOW CAN WE GET HIM THE MEDICATION!”

TAP: “Uh, its well over a thousand dollars”

SW: “THAT IS HORRIBLE! HE NEEDS IT!”

I’m going to save you the whining that followed, because to be honest my brain had switched off at that point.  It just involved complaining about the price of Zyvox, how evil MediCal was (oh really?) and that the doctor should just be able to write for something and have it covered.  The whole concept of having a medical resident just write for Zyvox without trying anything else (or doing a C/S workup) completely eluded him.  Oh, and somehow it was /my/ fault that I wouldn’t give him the medicine for free.  Yeah, COMPLETE knowledge of how the system works.

Here is another gem:

SW: “Hi! Im Jane, the social worker for Billy Mays”

TAP: “Hi Jane”

SW: “Billy’s MediCal isn’t working, and he’s out of medication, what can we do for him”

TAP: “Well, he’s should only be out of Prevacid, he can go a day or two without it”

SW: “Well, can you fill the Rx, then call MediCal and find out when his coverage will be turned back on and bill it then?”

TAP: “Uh, no.”

SW: “Why not! HE NEEDS THE MEDICATION! HE IS IN PAIN!”

TAP: *sigh*

These two were in the span of about a week of each other. They were different social workers but I assume must either share the same lead-coated coffee cup or used the same lead-painted crib growing up.

Whenever a Medicare/Medical patient comes in and say “I spoke with my social worker about my MediCare Part D coverage” I want to bang my face against the counter.  99% of these cases end up in the patient not having coverage for a month (while one gets shut off, and the other starts the first of the following month) and suddenly it becomes my problem.  For someone who supposedly knows how the ‘system’ works, they sure manage to screw things up.

Like I said earlier, there are social workers out there who are completely ninjas and are awesome at what they do, however they never TALK TO ME!  Share your funny social worker story!