Thanks...I Needed That
By: The Redheaded Pharmacist
Sometimes just when you need it most a patient or customer comes through with some comment or praise that validates your existence. Fortunately for me, I had a couple of those moments recently at work.
A female patient at work recently was checking in with us to see if her doctor had called back regarding a prescription refill request. This patient actually said to me “I should have called my refill in sooner!” I nearly tripped as I was walking after she muttered those words.
A second patient who asked me to help him find an over the counter product went beyond a simple thank you after I successfully found the item in question. He shook my hand and said ” thank you for your help, I really appreciate you taking the time to help me.” I had simply done my job but he appreciated the effort anyway.
These two little stories that might seem like insignificant moments to those who don’t work in a pharmacy. You may be wondering why I even bothered writing and sharing these moments here?
It’s so easy to get caught up in a sea of problems at work. Patients can get frustrated at pharmacists for problems and issues completely out of our control. Worse, all too often we are blamed for someone else's mistake. It can be very frustrating.
But I actually had a patient recognize that she could have done more for herself and didn’t blame the pharmacy for the resulting negative outcome. And guess what? We called and received the prescription in question for her. Problem solved and lesson learned.
I get so frustrated sometimes with some patients who seemingly can’t do anything on their own behalf. And I lack the ability to comprehend why patients who procrastinate and then don’t get what they want always seem to blame innocent bystanders for their mistakes.
But a couple of friendly and considerate patients can turn a whole day around. Getting a thank you from a member of the public goes a long way to make a bad day better and a good day great. And a patient who understands what they need to do next time to prevent a problem from repeating is simply priceless!
I’m glad there are times when patients show me that all of humanity is not lost. It is refreshing to see happy and thankful people who understand that there are things that are out of our control. It’s nice to avoid the role of scapegoat once in a while.
So yeah, this may be two simple little stories from an average workday. But for a pharmacist who has seen all too often the ugly side of humanity, those two patients came to me just in time.
After one of those patients left my pharmacy that day, I actually caught myself thinking “I needed that” as I went back to work. Some days, I really do need those moments just to get by.