Saturday, August 24, 2013

We may hate your online pharmacist!

With a hat tip to DrugMonkey, we bring you Dr. Jaded's tale of woe:

I had the delightful pleasure of speaking with a "pharmacy representative" at Pet Care Rx today.  My client, Mrs. Ina Hurry needed medication for her "Cherub" ASAP.  "Cherub" usually gets Medication, X mg, BID; however the pharmacy request came in for Y mg.  No problem, mistakes occur.  I call up Pet Care Rx and ask, as the prescribing authority, to change the dosage and fax the updated prescription back to me so I could authorize it.

The "pharmacy representative" told me that she would have to get the client's authorization for the update on dosage.  I chuckled a bit and said "I'm the prescribing veterinarian, I'm the one who says how much medication 'Cherub' needs.  Clients may be mistaken. Just fax me the new request."  The rep continues to say that I am not authorized to make changes to the prescription.  Welcome to the world of online pharmacies, where clients make all the calls and veterinary authorization is not needed. 

ME: It is the job of your pharmacist to check that client requests match previously dispensed medications and if they do not, then the prescribing veterinarian should be called. Check your records, "Cherub" has only been on X mg, NOT Y mg. Your pharmacy license is on the line here. 
REP: Cherub's never has had prescriptions here, or has multiple pet profiles, since I can't see old prescriptions in this profile"
ME: I'm staring at the prescription request from April (which was correct). Multiple profiles is not very effective at tracking prescriptions.   I want to be transferred to the pharmacist.
REP: There are none available.
ME: I would like to be transferred to your pharmacist's voicemail, please.

REP: Goodbye! (click)
What....the...hell......I give up.  Now I just have to sit back and wait for Mrs. Ina Hurry to call us, ranting and raving that we declined her "Cherub's" prescription request. to tend to the Parvo positive puppy that just came in....why can't we cite owners for neglect when they don't vaccinate on time?

Please do your homework before using an online pharmacy!


  1. We FLAT OUT refuse to deal with on line pharmacies. NOPE, we don't do it. You can get a written script and send it to whomever you chose, but we do not call anyone, we do not sign anything but our own scripts. If we get a fax from 1-800-PET-MEDS, it goes directly into the trash. I will not have some rep tell me what my patient is supposed to be on. It's bad enough when a pharmacist tells a client that their dog shouldn't be on such a high dose of a drug and that I don't know what I'm doing and I have to explain to my client that said pharmacist is not trained in veterinary medications and has he head up his ass and I have to prove using Plumb that I know what I'm doing, but I'm certainly not letting someone on the other end of a fax machine tell me what to do. NOPE.

  2. Step 1. Write prescription.
    Step 2. Hand prescription to client.
    The end.

  3. i prefer buying from Pet-care section of VerticalPharmacy, they are much better then Pet Rx.

  4. Pet Care Rx sure was more convenient for Mrs. Hurry than going to her local veterinarian, now weren't they?

  5. We make our clients sign a waiver before using online pharmacies stating it isn't our fault if they fill the wrong strength or drug. Heck, there are even a couple of local pharmacies we do this with because they have mucked up a prescription so badly.

    My favorite "What the hell, pharmacist?" moment still goes to a CVS pharmacist for telling our client there was "no difference between a U40 and U100" insulin and she could use her old U40 syringes with Lantus just fine. Our client called us up to chew us out for telling her she had to buy a whole new box of syringes when she had most of a box of U40 syringes left over. I explained to her the difference and how badly she'd be over dosing her cat to which she then apologized and gave me the name and number of the pharmacist. He got an education on veterinary insulin and was mortified when he realized his mistake would have killed the cat. Funny enough he remembered his ignorance the next time he dealt with us and called in to confirm a dose of phenobarb he thought too high for cat but "I figured you all know cats better than I do." See, there is hope yet!

  6. I agree... I write the Rx, hand it to the client, wish them the best along with a written copy of our policy explaining that once the Rx leaves our hands, we are no longer responsible for the actions of the pharmacy they choose. We have a carbon of the original for proof in case of pharmacy errors (which are way too frequent).

    The best laugh (or face palm event) was when a client called & demanded I sign a faxed Rx when I just gave her a written one a few weeks before. I said, no, I already gave you the prescription. Client: But I didn't want to send them that, they might lose it. Me: I gave you the prescription which you are supposed to give to the pharmacist, just like you would at Walgreen's for your own medicine. Client: Oh, I didn't want to send them that, it's the only one I have. Me: Well that's how this works... you give them the little piece of paper with the information on it (and money) and they hand you back the medicine described on the little piece of paper. In 6 months, you can ask for another little piece of paper because you used up the medicine you got from the first piece of paper and the refills. Client: But I'm completely out & FiFi hasn't had any medication for over a week. How can you be so heartless? She hasn't any medicine! Me: You can bring the prescription back here right now & we can fill it immediately for you so you have today. Client: But that's ridiculous, yours cost nearly $5 more (for a 60 day supply). Me: Our connection seems bad, it's so fuzzy, I can barely hear you. Click.

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  8. Oh what a mess! A real confusion for nothing. Bad dealing by Pet Care Rx!
    veterinary online ce

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