Writer’s Workshop: Pharmacy Phollies

Because it feels so good when I stop… (Source: Giphy)

My insurance company (let’s call it Tom) and my pharmacy (which we’ll call Dick) are both owned by the same company (which, as you probably know, I’m going to call Harry), which is a little like a personal injury lawyer owning his own ambulance service. Tom’s preferred pharmacy is Dick, for obvious reasons, so I’ve been using them for a couple of years now.

Every pharmacy in the country now has an automatic refill service, and Dick is no exception. Dick cajoled me into signing up for his automatic refill service, and up to now it’s been great: the minute I hit about 30 day’s worth onhand, Dick texts me to let me know that he’s filled the prescriptions and come pick them up. My prescriptions are issued every year when I have my checkup. So, when Mary picked up my last refill in February, I assumed that Dick wouldn’t do any more refills until I came in with a new prescription.

Well, you know what happens when you assume. Last month, I get a text message from Dick, telling me my prescriptions have been refilled. This puzzled me, because I hadn’t touched the refill that was done in February, but I assumed that I had counted incorrectly and had Mary pick them up. While Mary is on the way to see Dick, I get not one, but two irate calls from my doctor’s office (which I’ll call Devender, because that’s his name) telling me that the doctor has authorized the refill, but if I want any more I’ll have to make an appointment. Evidently, seeing that I had no refills, Dick called my doctor to get more, all without notifying me.

Today I got yet another irate call from Devender about another prescription, and after assuring them that I had scheduled an appointment, I decided that automatic refills were more trouble than they were worth. I went to Dick’s website to turn that feature off, and found that I couldn’t. I ended up calling their help desk. I spent half an hour on the phone before they had an agent available, who I could barely hear and who tried to convince me to keep the automatic refills going, but finally took care of it.

All’s well that ends well, I guess, but now I’m dreading my appointment at the end of May, because I’ll probably be lectured by the doctor about this whole mess.

14 thoughts on “Writer’s Workshop: Pharmacy Phollies

  1. See, I wish Dick would just refill our prescriptions every month without needing to go in to see Devender because I already know nothing has changed. I think our doctor made a mistake and ordered too many refills because when the time came to make an appointment they were REALLY annoyed that so much time had passed. I just shrug my shoulders like, “not my fault…I just go to the end of the refill whenever that is!”

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  2. The Husband is currently dealing with this same situation and complains about being “Dicked-around” with the damn auto refill process. On top of it all, I’m the one who scoots over to Dickdom and stands in a long, safe distanced line, only to be called up to a huge plastic sheet and talk with a clerk who exclaims “your husband’s refill isn’t ready, come back in about four hours!”

    I quit.

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  3. I say “blame Dick,” when you see the doctor. Not your fault. Dick was a little unethical, being more concerned with keeping the insurance money flowing, then proper procedure, which was to let your know x was your last prescription until you got a new one.

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    1. Dick (the pharmacy) and Tom (the insurance company) are owned by the same corporation, so that wasn’t so much of a problem. But it wasn’t right for them to call the doctor without talking to me first, though it might be SOP for them.

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  4. I don’t do auto refill but we do order refills online through the Kaiser website. So much easier to have them sent than to go pick them up. No delivery charges either.

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  5. Yeah the auto-refill can be a pain in the ass. I find they say my prescription is ready to pick up way before I am finished with the current one. It is a pain so they need to get things worked out. I’d be telling my dr not to get angry with me, that’s for sure.

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