Got a strange phone call this morning. The head pharmacist from my local CVS called me, and we had a long and intersting conversation. Some of you may remember, a month or so back, I reported how when I was picking up some pain meds, a young pharmacy assistant got smart with me, holding out my bag of meds in one hand, and saying, "Mr. Riley, that's sure a lot of Loratabs." There was a large line behind me, btw. He stood there, kind of waving my bag in front of him. I knew I didn't have to say a word, but he pissed me off, and in a rare non-passive moment, I said "I am dealing with advanced prostate cancer, and have lots of post-radiation pain, do you want to trade places with me?"
That shut him up for the time, and I got my meds. I did tell the story to my oncologist on my last visit, but never thought anymore of it, nor did I ask him to intervene in any way.
THe pharmacist told me, that she had gotten a letter from my doctor, on his letter head, and he blasted CVS and her staff for how I was treated. He read her the riot act, and told her that in the future, if anyone had any problems with any of his scripts for me, that they were to call him personally, and he even gave her his private number.
She said she hung up the letter (minus my name), and made all of her staff read it. She wasn't sure of who the offender was, but it was easy to figure out, as he was the only male on her staff. She did ask why I didn't complain on the spot, and I told her, that I like to be fair, and in these hard economic times, didn't want someone to lose their job.
She went on to tell me how she was a 2x breast cancer survivor, and how radiation had heavily damaged her at one point several years ago, so she knew what I was going through.
As a result, she is taking steps to educate her younger staff about having sensitivity and empathy to their pharmacy customers, and assured me, that the offender will soon be history. She even called my doctor's nurse, and had a long talk with her as well, and the nurse read her a riot act as well, hoping that this episode is never repeated.
I am impressed that my doctor took in my story of what happened, and chose on his own to act upon it, and to make sure that it would't be repeated. But this is the same doctor that calls or e-mails me every week or two, to check on me and to see if anything needs to be adjusted. I feel like I got a rare one.
The pharmacist did break down and cried several times during the conversation (made me feel bad), but she said thay she couldn't stand knowing that one of her people have done something that callous.
david in sc