Saturday, March 1, 2008

Ramblings of a Pharmacy Technician (Part 1):

or Simple Helpful Tips to make your Pharmacy Experience as Wonderful as Possible


I know you haven't changed employers recently. I've had the same job for the last 13 years--but in December I always, always, always get a new insurance card.

More specifically--a PHARMACY card, and there is always, always, always a nice little letter that reads, "Be sure to bring your new card to the Pharmacist".

Telling us you work for FEDEX doesn't help us.
Telling us you haven't changed jobs doesn't help us either.

We actually HAVE to see your card. We literally see hundreds of cards a year and they each have specific information about YOU and YOUR specific plan. If we had access to this information WITHOUT seeing your card, we wouldn't ask for it. Honest.

We're never going to keep you from getting your medication (unless it's harmful to you) but you'll end up paying A LOT MORE if you're one of the lucky ones who HAS insurance, but decides to leave your new pharmacy card at home.

2. KNOW YOUR INSURANCE PLAN. This is probably asking too much because it can all be very tough, I know. Insurance is very confusing and always changing.

Questioning the pharmacy staff about different co-pays or deductibles or such is usually not going to get you anywhere. Why? We're NOT your insurance company.

We can tell you everything you would ever want to know about your medication (how it works, side effects, etc.,) but the co-pay structure, that's insurance.

Calling the dreaded 1-800 number on the back of your card & actually being able to talk to someone is a very daunting process. I know. I know because I have called so many insurance companies in my career, I can't even begin to count (even in groups of five).

But while we're calling YOUR insurance company, We're not filling YOUR prescription or the prescription belonging to the person who dropped off their prescription after you. We are stuck on the phone for 20 minutes only to find out that we need your new insurance card (see #1).

Or (and) because WE ARE NOT YOU, they usually are NOT going to tell us anything special or specific either. They usually want to talk to you, NOT US.

& WE don't even get to talk directly to YOUR insurance company or employer, we are merely talking to the company that PROCESSES CLAIMS for YOUR insurance. I bet you didn't even know that, did you?

In Short: Always bring your (new) Pharmacy card & know the specifics of your Insurance coverage. More helpful tips are forthcoming.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

oh, if more people would read this blog, the world would be a better place (at least in the pharmacy)


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