Tuesday, November 11, 2008

The Angry Pharmacist Has Hit The Nail Right On The Head!

The Angry Pharmacist has really hit a sweet spot with me regarding the inability to understand pharmacists in the retail arena. I spend at least two calls a day trying to clarify an order that I called in myself so I knew that it was correct. I'm no saint, sometimes I mess up and forget to write the number of pills on a prescription but you CAN read my handwriting and understand my plain English speech.

I find it very amusing when a pharmacist that has such a thick accent calls me and says that they can't understand my order. Also, I feel like screaming when they delay filling an order because they want to know who my collaborating MD is. How many prescriptions have you filled from my office over the last year? I'm in your computer already? Come on!!!


  1. Great post and you are correct he hit the nail on the head. Enjoyed the read and I will be back for more. Keep the articles coming.

  2. Thanks for leaving a comment Nursing Journals. I'll look forward to more of your input.

  3. Anonymous1:29 AM

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  4. Anonymous4:53 PM

    I can understand your frustration with pharmacist calling for your co-signing MD, but that is the insurance rules or we dont get paid.
    In NYC, its even more ridiculous. The OPD (board of pharmacy) and Dept of mental hygiene (aka public health) have opposing rules on how to fill medicaid prescriptions. That makes it a blast.

    So for all of you frustrated professionals..enjoy a you tube video called Pharmacy RESPECT. I haven't had such a good laugh in a while.

  5. Anonymous9:44 PM

    You will never understand pharmacists, because you are not one and will never understand the complications of working in a pharmacy. You're complaining about TWO calls a day from us? Try hundreds of calls non stop all day from patients. We do not have office personnel to filter out calls. YOU only have to deal with ONE patient at a time. WE have to deal with 500+ prescriptions daily and about 15-20 waiting patients at a time. so eat **** ! ****** NP's who don't know how to write for ****. trust me, they don't have time to waste calling your stupid ***, if thye're calling it's for a GOOD REASON.. *******.. ********... *******

    1. Anonymous9:58 AM

      Quit bitching and go get another job if u can't handle it...so sick of hearing "professionals" bitch about their "profession"

  6. Anonymous, Due to the fact that I think free speech is important, I left your comment but I deleted the explicatives. You say that I cannot write but I noted that you misspelled a word or two also. I somehow doubt that you have a 7 year degree as a pharmacist with your grammar usage. Most pharmacists that I know aren't so unprofessional.

  7. Thanks for the link to the You tube video Anonymous! It was hilarious!

  8. Anonymous12:01 AM

    In my pharmacy we have to have the Md's info connected to the np as well. I do not see what the big deal is. Most Np's are listed on the Rx anyway. At the store I work in it is the ones that come from hospitals or urgent cares that have almost no info on them that create a problem. It is true that third party audits can cost a pharmacy huge bucks. It is also the pharmacy that has to detect fake rx's and its really sucks when someone is staring at you wondering why you are taking so long to fill their rx while you are on the phone tracking someone down at a hospital to get their information. Of course computer scripts with all the info sent to the pharmacy or printed out are WONDERFUL!

  9. Anonymous7:23 PM

    With all due respect, as far as it goes, we deal with all manner of prescriptions directly called in by doctors and other practitioners themselves, and it's quite common for them to have left off vital parts of the prescription. It's a human mistake and it happens, but don't be annoyed when we call, because we're correcting your error.

    Sometimes handwriting is not clear to a particular person, and since we ARE PROFESSIONALS after all, we use due diligence and call to make sure. It's not about inability to read English, it's about being sure before we dispense a chemical into a patient's bloodstream. We're the last place a med is double checked before an often unwitting patient pops it in their mouth.

    Sounds like you have more of a real issue with accents and inability to speak or understand English than you do with pharmacists in particular. This is your own understandable issue, of course, and not pharmacists' fault or responsibility.

  10. The big deal with having the MD's name billed to the insurance companies is the fact that he or she's not even writing the RX and I am totally responsible for it. I would like to get the credit for writing my prescriptions so that the companies understand exactly what drugs I use and trust.

  11. Anonymous, I understand that you are the last safety net for the patient. Yes, I guess I do have a problem with some pharmacist's accents. I have more of a problem with the one who continually calls me back for a clarification when I spell out last names slowly. I also get a little irritated when pharmacy assistants question my orders to my patients without knowing the patient's background and my thought processes. Pharmacists are educated to do it and I don't really mind because I have picked enough of their brains, that's for sure!

  12. Anonymous3:13 AM

    (not the previous anonymous) I understand your frustration about pharmacist verifying your collaboration with an MD. Ultimately, it is up to the PHARMACIST to make sure a prescription is valid. The alternative is the DEA laying fines/jailtime on us for filling invalid CS scripts that a nurse practitioner wrote..and that does happen. In every case regardless of your frustrations when the prescription leaves the pharmacy it is the responsibility of the pharmacist to make sure that patient will be safe taking that medication and it was legally dispensed.

  13. Anonymous (not the previous anonymous), I think the main problem that I have is the fact that the insurance companies are not recognizing that NPs and PAs are actually writing most of these scripts and not the collaborating MDs. We need to be held accountable for our own actions. The drug reps also need to see our real numbers as well.

  14. Anonymous12:26 AM

    As a pharmacist, I do not care about you getting "credit" for your drugs with drug reps. That prescribing data is mined, bought, and sold, and I have no reason financially or professionally to help with that. And finally, many insurance companies will only accept orders validated by an MD. A nurse does prescribe under some type of protocol, which an MD is ultimately responsible for, not you alone. Many insurance companies will even refuse reimbursement for prescriptions written by a non-network doctor. If you have a DEA number, if you get it preprinted on the RX maybe you can get some pharmacists to submit the info. I do it when possible, but not every drug plan will take it. Overall, we're going to want to put it under the MD, since they are on the top of the prescribing food chain and the practitioner with overall responisbility for the patient.

  15. Anonymous,
    I am ultimately responsible for the care of MY patients. My collaborating MD (notice I said collaborating not supervising) has his own malpractice insurance as I have mine separately. I am the one making treatment decisions for my patients so why should his name be on my prescriptions? In a lawsuit everyone connected to the practice is named but it all comes out to who is the one making decisions, not just being the MD. Blue Cross is now starting to credential NPs and I hope to get it done so that you can bill the company under my name alone. Thanks for leaving a comment!

  16. Anonymous3:56 AM

    As stated here, insurance companies dictate the information we request from providers. Any DEA, NPI, quantity, direction, date, time, lack of hard copy follow up, etc....left off an Rx can be subject to review upon their audits. They can & do refuse to pay for any Rx with question marks. Chains come down heavy on their RPh's to make sure we do not fill such prescriptions. Pharmacies DO get charged back thousands of dollars in audits. So, don't take it personal..... just understand that we, as well as you, work within the confines of insurance companies who run the world.

  17. I feel like you're disregarding a lot of good arguments made by everyone that would like to remain anonymous. My biggest concern are none of these.

    What I'd like to know is why do you care so much about what drug reps, insurance companies and your credit standing with them?? Are they taking responsibility for your patients as well?? And speaking of patients, are they not your #1 priority?? I have a lot of respect for NPs and RPhs but to have this divide is completely unnecessary!! Can you even imagine how wonderful working in either environments would improve if both parties learned to regard each other as allies in a battle instead of the annoying roommate that you have to put up with?? Do you realize that both parties are in their field not just for the money but because deep down, both agree that they want to save lives and make a difference?? So lets try this, next time you get phone calls from NPs or RPhs, treat them like your best friend, the one you go to when you want to complain about your annoying roommate. Just try it out, no one gets hurt in the process. Then come back and tell me you hate dealing with them.

    It's about time you sucked it up and did your jobs, cause you don't do it for yourselves (at least I hope not cause that would really suck for you). It's all about the patients and the care they receive.

    I know it's ideal but I'm slowly but surely changing the world.

  18. Himali, I am frustrated with NPs and PAs providing good quality care to their patients, and it is all about their care, but not being listed as their primary care provider. Many times my collaborating MD doesn't even see my patients. I just get tired of seeing another doctor's name on my patient's prescription requests and I have a VERY hard time getting the samples I need for my patients because I am an invisible provider in their systems.

  19. Anonymous9:37 AM

    As a pharmacist, most mistakes come from medical assistants who got a "degree" from the medix school, that is located in a run down strip mall. I would rather bang my head against a wall, then deal with a brain dead medical assistant.

  20. Anonymous11:16 PM

    I think I understand your frustration with the "system." From the posts I've read it seems that its the "system" that requires an MD's name or DEA number on an Rx you wrote. I don't work in the state involved (we can use NP DEA numbers) but I can understand why it would seem illogical to require the identifier of an MD that has never seen your patient. But this is not the pharmacist's idea--they just want to get paid/follow the law in their state. Its whoever requires that your "collaborating" physican's identifier be on the Rx that creates the problem. Pharmacists generally don't like calling any more than they have to. That you are an "invisible provider" must be hard to take but (I'm offering a suggestion you may have already explored) couldn't you get samples from the MD who does get unwarranted credit for your efforts? I know its a lousy compromise but I'm just trying to be potentially helpful. Maybe a printout of who sees what patients could convince those drug loving reps to see that you have your own patients and practice. I have a problem with drug companies but that's another story. I'm posting this as anonymous because I don't visit "sites" very often and I don't know how to post otherwise. I don't know who Anonymous pharmacist is referring to as brain-dead medical assistants but I would hope that person is bright enough to realize you are not a medical assistant. You were also "dissed" by the pharmacist that said you are a "nurse that can prescribe under protocol." You are obviously more than a "nurse" following protocol, not that I am trying to demean nurses in any way. Perhaps he/she is a "Doctor" of Pharmacy (PharmD) and doesn't like the fact that you have an actual clinical practice where you make the therapeutic decisions and you have "only" a Masters degree. The whole PharmD thing is just a way for pharmacy schools to make money because in reality, in rare exeptions, it does little to "enhance" the (and I say this laughingly) the "practice" of pharmacists. The most practice I've had is counting 5, 10, 15, 20 etc. Hey I kid pharmacists--I are one. Thats why I went to graduate school in another field a few years ago. What many posters seem oblivious to is that what they write is often much more a reflection of them than you or the subject matter.
    Bill Walker RPh. M.S. use my name or not, its up to you.

  21. Anonymous5:39 PM

    You sound so ignorant, I cannot tell you how many HOURS a day I spend a day calling MD's to only get a hostile nurse on the phone to re-read me a prescription that I can CLEARLY read. Just because I can read it does NOT mean it's correct. If you think we enjoy wasting time calling the office back because someone as the MD's end is not doing their job, you are very incorrect. Work ONE day in a retail setting and you'd have a little more appreciation.

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