Remember I have posted in a right state, more than once, because I was on the last pill or half pill of something I can’t be without, but the repeat prescription had yet to materialise, despite phoning it in up to two weeks earlier?
Well, I could never get to the bottom of whether it was GP or pharmacy playing silly beggars, as each blamed the other!
Well, the GP surgery has recently launched a new, online prescription request service. I didn’t sign up immediately, as it requires you to attend the GP surgery with proof of identity - e.g. passport (quite funny, when I didn’t need any ID to ring up the pharmacy).
So I waited until next time I had occasion to go to the doc’s anyway, as it’s quite far out of my way.
Anyway, recently, the opportunity came up, as I had to go about something (not MS), so remembered to take the passport along, to get sorted. Yesterday afternoon, after a few false starts logging on (among other things, they had an 11-digit user ID that had to be transcribed perfectly), I placed my first order. Not for anything critical, for the first try, but just the contraceptive pill. I say it’s not critical, but it’s important, as I’m taking it to manage monthly, cycle-related “flare-ups”, not for contraception.
I wasn’t sure quite how the system worked, and expected to have to check back online to see if it was ready, and then give the pharmacy a ring, to tell them they could go and collect.
So imagine my surprise when there was a knock at the door at 3 p.m. this afternoon - just 24 hours later - and it was my pills!
So it looks like all this pallaver of ordering 10 days before I need them, but still having to chase three times, and being distressed and down to my last half pill before they bring anything is completely the fault of the pharmacy. Now they will no longer be able to lie to me, after a week: “Oh, we do keep going up there, but the doctor still hasn’t done it yet.”
I’ll be able to check online, to know if that’s right or not, so I’ll know who deserves the bllcking.
The delivery driver, who, in contrast with his colleagues, does seem genuinely concerned about it, admitted that part of the problem is the pharmacy maintains very low stocks of everything. So it’s as I feared: when I phone in for something like Baclofen, they don’t have it. Their attempt to postpone reordering until the last possible minute is what’s leaving me in the lurch, and causing them to blame the doctor!
But if they have a patient who always needs Baclofen, is it too much to ask that they should maintain enough stocks, just for her? Really, unless I died or moved away, it isn’t very likely I’d stop needing them suddenly, so I don’t know why they can’t anticipate that, and have a few packets always in reserve. Even if you only have one customer who takes it, if it’s a longstanding customer who isn’t likely to find a cure, shouldn’t that be enough to anticipate she’ll still need it?
So, I’m going to try the new online order direct to the surgery, from now on. Of course, the contraceptive pill isn’t a rare or hard-to-find med, unlike some of the others, so it might not have been a fair test. But 24 hours, down from two weeks (and sometimes more) is a remarkable difference in turnaround. I think Baclofen will be next up, which I know to be one of the problem ones, so it will be interesting to see if that’s also much quicker, using the new method, as they won’t have the excuse of blaming the doctor any more.