Well, this one might be inspired by a conversation that took place where I work. Maybe. Possibly. 😀
If you’ve never worked retail pharmacy, count yourself lucky. If you visit one regularly, those people work harder than you’ll ever know.
May 20, 2015
I’d been running around all day. Seven hours down and two to go. I’d barely sat down, and one of the three times was to pee. I heard the click of the intercom system and cringed, holding my breath. It clicked off after a second on indistinguishable noise, and I breathed out in relief. The soda delivery driver grinned at me.
“One of those days?”
“Every day is one of those days around this place,” I said. I finished scanning in the merchandise, signed for the delivery, and once he handed me a copy of the invoice, I headed for the office to drop it off in the recieving paperwork bin. I still had to get change for one of the registers, call the help center about the coupon printers in the pharmacy, and … ‘Manager to the pharmacy.’
I grumbled under my breath at the page. I told someone else to get change and headed for the pharmacy. I knew when I saw the seven people in line what they wanted. I didn’t even ask as I stepped into the black hole that was that area of the store. I could see the technician was busy at the counter, and another on the phone with a patient, so I went for the drive-thru phone.
After ringing the guy up, I thanked him and went to hang up the phone when he said, “Excuse me.”
“So this is a generic drug.”
“But my doctor wrote the name brand on the prescription I dropped off. Why isn’t it name brand?”
“We are required, by law, to fill your prescription with the generic because it is cheaper than the name brand.”
“But, what if I want the name brand? My doctor wrote the name of the drug on the prescription.”
“Okay, then we can fill it for the name brand, but your insurance won’t cover it because there is a generic available. It will cost you much more since you’ll have to pay cash price and not a co-pay.”
“Okay, but why won’t they cover it if my doctor wrote it that way?”
“It doesn’t matter how he wrote it. Now, if he wrote as no substitutions then we would fill it as the name brand.”
“Isn’t that what he did?”
“No. He has to physically write ‘Name Brand Only’ or ‘No Generic’ on the paper you dropped off.”
“But the name brand is written on there already. Why can’t you fill it as that?”
“Like I said, if you want name brand, your insurance won’t cover it. If you doctor writes you a new prescription and writes ‘Name Brand Only’ then your insurance still won’t cover it. They will require a Prior Authorization from your doctor, which means we fax your doctor, he tells the insurance company why he wants you to only take the name brand of the medication, and if they approve, they send the paperwork back to him and he sends it back to us.”
“Can we do that?”
“No. He didn’t write it that way.”
“But he wrote the name of the medication on the paper.”