Sep 3, 2010

Pharmacy Ponderings

Yesterday I dropped the new RX off at the children's hospital outpatient pharmacy after seeing the ENT specialist who will be diagnosing "the cough" by "exclusion." "The cough" had already subsided before we got in to said ENT replaced by a nice rattly, loose cough. "Is this the cough you are talking about?" asks the way-too-handsome-student-nurse-heart-throb resident. Doogie, Doogie, Doogie. sigh. If this was "the cough" I wouldn't be sitting here wasting my time on something obviously within normal limits. I do have a life or at least I do long for a life outside of this hospital.

I dropped the RX the ENT prescribed off at the hospitals' outpatient pharmacy which will only accept scripts from physicians on the hospital staff. This means The Teenager's glaucoma drops, The Boy's ADHD medication, and every script written by our pediatrician would not be accepted here thus our 2 additional pharmacies.

I will go on record today stating that if one more person suggests i go to their pharmacy where they never have issues or asks why i use 3 pharmacies when I am not a pill lady pharmacy hopping for Oxycontin i will throw myself on the floor. Don't get me wrong I am happy Walbrown's and Grinn Dixie pharmacies work for you. It simply isn't that easy in our house hold. And remember? I did try your Walbrown's where you
never have any problems proving that I am open to suggestions and also proving my claim that it isn't that easy in our household.

Last night I wake up to the baby choking and after it subsides an hour later I'm lying there pondering the pharmacy curse and our options:

Children's Hospital Outpatient Pharmacy:
The Pros: This pharmacy is a hop, skip and jump away on the interstate. They can be trusted with teeny-tiny pediatric doses, complicated compounds and rx's like yesterdays which is not likely stocked by your neighborhood pharmacy. The teeny-tiny four foot nothing pharmacist is a wiz who has bailed us out more times than i have digits to count. When I had The teenagers Diastat rx i was informed by neurology that insurance would not pay for this emergency seizure drug because The Teenager was not yet on a daily seizure medication having had just one seizure at that point. Cost for this Valium rectal rocket? $250.00. Teeny-tiny pharmacist yanked it out of my hand and said, "I'll just override the insurance."

he Cons: When you arrive you park in a parking garage whose handicap spots are often filled,walk about one block through an overhead walkway to the outpatient office building to another overhead walk way where you are stopped by the visitor gestapo lady who makes a name tag you must wear to your destination. You then enter the main hospital and take an elevator down to the hospital lobby where the pharmacy is located and pick up or drop off your rx's. The glitch with the overhead walkway is that is is filled with colorful sit-on sculptures and awesome, projected liquid-looking patterns on the floor that jiggle when you dance on them which is what the teenager was doing. Sitting and dancing. Dancing and sitting. What takes me 2 minutes to accomplish when I am alone took 20 minutes one way with The Teenager in tow.

The walkway is also slanted downward which makes an excellent Evel Knievel ramp for the boy's racing wheel chair. He always uses his wheel chair because the distance from car to pharmacy is too hard on his femurs. He revs up at the garage exit and peels out down this ramp where he skids to a stop in front of the registration desk and security guard who generally applaud and high five him while I am running behind him
screeeeeing. It takes all the will power I have not to backhand him right out of said wheel chair for not listening thus endangering not only himself but others with his reckless driving. Yesterday, he nearly plowed into a nurse who again, thought it was adorable. I wanted to smack her down as well. What part of inappropriate behavior don't you nincompoop enablers understand? I don't care if he's cute and in a wheel chair. If he was butt-ugly and ambulatory you would be reprimanding him not high-fiving him!

This pharmacy is not open on weekends or holidays, and closes at 5:00 pm. Yesterday by the time we danced and burned rubber through the walkway to the pharmacy, the teeny-tiny pharmacist informed me, "We're closed." I have learned never to piss off said teeny-tiny pharmacist as she is not a force to be reckoned with. Last year I sent her a Christmas card. She informs me it was the only one received from a client and had it proudly displayed. Don't think I get any brownie points because of the Christmas card, however. Ain't happening with teeny-tiny.

Before she could hand me back yesterdays ENT rx I spun and ran from the pharmacy like I was on fire looking for a spot to stop-drop-and-roll yelling over my shoulder, "That's ok! I'll be back tomorrow! Bye bye now!" This time it worked.

Today I will make my 4th trip in one week to the hospital to pick up the prescription. This would be fun only if i suffered from Munchhausen's by Proxy.

XYZ Pharmacy # 1:
The Pros: Located near my home with a drive-thru. Open 24 hours. I have left the baby's seizure medication here because they always have it in stock and rarely screw this one up and did I mention they have a drive-thru? They also seem to manage to fill common antibiotics without a huge production. Again, the drive-thru is the enticement.
The Cons: Staffed by The Village Idiot and his first cousins who received their pharmacy degrees online. Average wait, "two hours." When your return in two hours, "give us one more hour." When you return two days later on a Friday night at 5:05 they inform you they "will have to" contact the doctor as there is a question regarding the rx. I inform them it is Friday after 5:00pm and there is no doctor until Monday and that I dropped prescriptions off 4 days ago and why didn't they do this 4 days ago? The racket of crickets chirping in their empty heads forces me to snatch rx out of their hands and drive to:

XYZ Pharmacy #2:
The Pros: Brilliant, friendly, happy, compassionate, efficient pharmacist who I adore. He is so personable and calm I suspect he may be dipping into the goods. When you say you are waiting for the rx they tell you 10 to 15 minutes. This is partially true. By the time I go into the bathroom located at the back of the store they have already called my name which I can't hear from the bathroom so I come out sit down and wait 10 to 15 minutes until they see me and wave me over to pick up the prescription that took them 2 minutes to fill.
The Cons: Not close to home. No drive thru which means I have to drag my children inside with me. I try not to bring my children out in public when they are tired, sick or over-stimulated. This leaves a very narrow margin of opportunity which never coincides with the procuring of prescriptions. If you recall the baby had her first ever tantrum in this pharmacy because i wouldn't put her in a shopping cart.

Some folks long to win the lottery.
I long to not be humiliated in public by my children.

So...two trips to the hospital since I had to leave after The Baby's x-rays (where she fought like a tiger on Meth ) to pick up The Boy at school on the other side of town and then return to the hospital for The Baby's appointment. All of this and a mandatory PTA meeting at The Boy's school at 6:00 pm, too. Normally I love to attend anything associated with this school. Unfortunately, at this point, the PTA meeting was merely the cherry on the crap cake this awful day had become. By 5:00 pm the pharmacy is closed, the kids are melting down and I am finished mentally. I called Iris who agreed to take the Teenager off my hands while i drug The Baby and The Boy to the meeting. I informed her if she didn't the headlines in the morning would read, "Mom strangles kids at PTA meeting."

We survived. Thank God, we always do and as Anne Taintor sez:

I feel compelled to add here that today at 7:30 am there is a knock on my front door and it is Andy the sewer guy. We are now on a first name basis. He asks how it's been going since the sewage explosion. He is back in the neighborhood doing some finishing touches and after small talk he advises me, "Be sure to keep your toilet seats down today." I'm happy to report I now know enough not to ask, can it get any worse?.

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ANewKindOfPerfect said...

Phew! I am tired just reading that! I definitely understand the pharmacy dilemmas. We finally (KNOCK ON WOOD!) have a great one with a great pharmacist. In fact, I just got off the phone with them. They faxed the GI office FOUR times, FOUR days in a row this week, for refills on two of Peanut's meds. Meds she has been on for oh .... three years?? And the GI office hasn't returned the faxes or called in the refills. So it's Friday night, and I'm two doses away from being out on both meds. The lovely pharmacist told me to come by in the morning and she'll front me enough of each to get us through whenever the damn GI decides to call them in! :) You gotta love someone who actually CARES about their customers.

I hope the meds help, although it sounds like The Baby's cough has changed. Is it sounding better?

Island Rider said...

Oh, boy. It is amazing after most of your posts, that's about all I can say. And to say, I apologize, but this makes me feel so much better about my own life which only requires a visit to my own idiot pharmacist once a month. My insurance requires me to go there, but I dread every minute of the encounters.


AKnewKIndOfPerfect: Our wonderful pharmacist will also front us however much we need until he can get the doctors office or insurance straightened out! Isn't it a relief when you meet someone like this? Don't you ever wonder when you have trouble like you are having getting your daughters GI meds how all of these druggies obtain Oxycontin and Vicodin so easily from the pharmacies!? Just a thought?
IR: Yes, many people who observe my life feel better about their own.

Kathleen Scott said...

No, it can't and won't. The sewage explosion gave you the record forever.

Nice of Andy to care, says something about how human you are that he's not afraid of you now. I think my behavior would have frightened him off after his sewer exploded in my house.

A.M. Mama said...

I love you and can't believe I missed seeing you at the hospital the other day. But I would have totally just been another enabler passing out high-5's to your extreme wheelchair rider.

Just be glad he was up in a chair. Never know who lets their kids crawl around pooping all over those hospital floors...