Have you ever been shorted at the pharmacy?

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Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 856
   Posted 6/25/2010 11:17 AM (GMT -6)   
I was shorted one pill. I am not going to call or anything though because it is my breakthrough medication and I have enough. But, I will count next time and if I am shorted again, I will report it. I won't do anything this time because I really think it was probably an honest mistake. Maybe it wasn't, but I don't need the stress of calling/etc., when I have enough.

Have you ever been shorted? This is a Class Two medication. I was shorted once with my hydrocodone--ten pills!!! The pharmacist said that they didn't keep a log of them and that it would be too much for him to count them, so I let it go. That was a different pharmacy. Now, I count the pills RIGHT when I get home, but one short won't do much to me and I'd rather not deal with the stress of calling.


Mrs. Dani
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Date Joined Jun 2009
Total Posts : 2787
   Posted 6/25/2010 12:11 PM (GMT -6)   
   Dear Flower,
     I have been going to the same pharmacist for over 10 yrs.. Over time I have been shorted, given too much, partial fills, vacation forwards and expectant fill partials. I know I should count my meds, but I don't. I usually find out something is amiss when I refill. Like when I was given too much medicine I was asked if everything was okay and when I said yes, everythings fine. I was told I was 4 days late filling my medicine. That turned out to be given too much medicine.
     Or the time when I apparently needed my script "re approved" because some pain meds are filled yearly, I was given a weeks worth of medicine "forward partial fill on expectant re approval". That turned out to be a good thing because apparently H1N1 virus had reached my doctors office and half of them were out sick for a week. When I had apparently filled my meds early after that, I was asked how I was feeling? I said I was fine but that I would send my husband to pick up the refill on his way to work. When he picked them up, apparently the new pharmacist had taken out too much of what would be my normal fill because of the "partial fill". So instead of giving me my regular perscription less 5 days of meds, she gave me less 7 days of meds.. I feel bad because she really had a hard time getting used to things the first few weeks working in Rons pharmacy.
     So, I guess I am saying that in the end I should be doing like you do, and count my medicine. But, I just foolishly, leave it in Ron's and my doctors' hands to figure out and keep track of it all. If I could just stick to my gunns and count like you do, I wouldnt have anywhere near as many issues.
     I am not sure what to do when you are shorted and know that you have been shorted. But, I completly understand why you wouldnt want the hassle or headache of reporting your meds short. Good thing you have extra no doubt!
*warm hugg*
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
Chronic Pain Moderator

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 1097
   Posted 6/25/2010 12:45 PM (GMT -6)   
I've never been shorted that I'm aware of. Like Dani, I don't tend to count my pills when I get them - I just assume they are correct. I'm lucky with my pharmacist and my doctor that getting a refill is not a problem at all for me...whenever I call in for a renewal, it's ready the next day.

Hope all is well.

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Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 1158
   Posted 6/25/2010 1:15 PM (GMT -6)   
I was shorted by one pharmacy and changed ASAP. I now go to one that hasn't had an issue so far. Unlike some of you I can't be shorted I'm like clockwork on my meds.

It sucks to have to count meds though. I wish everyone was honest and glowin with happiness :)

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39 yr young female with,
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Hopefully NO MORE........

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 16796
   Posted 6/25/2010 1:57 PM (GMT -6)   
Yes, this happens more than you realize. We used one pharamcy a large chain and was shorted for year before we picked up on it. We switched pharmacies once we realized what was going on. These were not pain meds either. I was shorted some pills quite a while back and I called them and took the bottle in and laid it on the counter and said now you count. Other than to open this bottle and realize they are not all there they have not been touched. scripts are able to be tracked don't let them tell you they cannot account for the pills, thats a crock. My pharmacy has a policy once you leave the store with the bottle its on you, but I went right back after calling them. I got my correct amt too.

crohns disease dx 2002 & small bowel resection, still looking for remission whatever that is, chronic pain 22 yrs, added ulcerative colitis 6-05 to the mix, high blood pressure 28 yrs, aortic heart valve insuffiency, depression, osteoarthritis, osteoporosis lumbar spine, scoliosis lumbar spine, peripheral neuropathy hands & feet, COPD & on oxygen therapy, lupus & psoriasis and psoratic arthritis. Several other health issues just not enough room to list it all. Too many surgeries to list and too many medications to list. Currently on 17 different daily medications. Intrathecal pain pump implanted June 05.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 6795
   Posted 6/25/2010 2:26 PM (GMT -6)   
I don't blame you for not wanting the hassle for one pill - unless it was an extended release med you only take once/day. Now that would make a difference. But unless you count them at the store, or unless you have a pharmacy that knows and really trusts you, you probably can't do much anyway. But never let any pharmacist tell you they don't keep track of meds - especially controlled substances! These days with computers there is more than one system for checking for errors and keeping track, because the pharmacy needs to account for things. My cousin is a pharmacist and she tells me what she has to go through with paperwork and such if she makes an occasional error. And there are back up systems for catching these at the end of the day.

I know the smartest thing is to count your meds right in front of them, but I also know sometimes that's got it's drawbacks. A lot of the pharmacies may not have a convenient, safe and clean place to do that. Also, one of the meds I'm getting now is this teeny tiny pill that I have no idea how I'd count without making a mess of it. I even thought when I got them home I should count them but couldn't bring myself to! But then I thought it looked about right and this is at my regular pharmacy I use all the time.

Anyway, I don't blame you for not wanting the hassle, although you may want to report it to them, and see if they'll believe you and replace it.


Regular Member

Date Joined Jun 2010
Total Posts : 27
   Posted 6/25/2010 6:19 PM (GMT -6)   
I was once given 20 pills out of an rx that should have been 120. Yeah, that pharmacy has A LOT of problems, but I have the district manager pretty much on speed dial. I always count my vicodin when I get it filled. I just don't trust them. I don't think it's intentional. They're just careless and can't be bothered to do a good job.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 4961
   Posted 6/25/2010 11:24 PM (GMT -6)   
I use our small town pharmacy. In fact one of the techs is my neighbor. Only had one issue, she thought it said 40 and it actually was written for 60 pills. I knew right away it was wrong because of the bottle size. Honest mistake ans she even told me she miss read the amount. I love having a small town pharmacy. We know each other by first names and she goes above and beyond when issues come up with insurance.

Take care,
Moderator: GERD/Heartburn
Nissen 6/06 and 5/09

Veteran Member

Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 1037
   Posted 6/27/2010 4:15 PM (GMT -6)   
Unless you count the pills in front of them while you are still in the pharmacy there isn't anything you can do. It's because people used to...and I'm sure still are.. telling them they are short just to get more pills. It happens, it's not right, but it happens.

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Regular Member

Date Joined Apr 2010
Total Posts : 23
   Posted 6/28/2010 2:14 PM (GMT -6)   
I've been shorted, but only at the big-chain pharmacies. I started taking my prescriptions to much smaller, family-owned and privitzed pharmacies, and have never had a problem since. I'm guessing that the pharmacists and technicians are more careful when counting pills because every customer is considered a client, and without clients, they would have no business. Not only are they more accurate, but they're more friendly, and the pharmacy I use the most will even deliver your prescriptions if you're not able to pick them up. Now that's how to run a pharmacy! Just like the good ol' days.....
 Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy Syndrome of the Left lower extremity

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