My ear has started to pinch and bother me. It’s not that bad, but it’s getting notably worse. I decided a long while ago that life it too short to feel sick when you don’t have to, so after work I pulled into one of the “Urgent Care” places — it’s not an emergency room, but it was after the regular doctor closed. Usual procedure: Pull in, fill out some crap they mostly already know, wait, go to the back, wait, see the doctor. Now, I was thinking — my ear hurts, it’s my ear.
He looks in both ears, and says they’re fine, “But let’s look at your throat.”
“It’s your throat.” And he proceeds to list some problems with my throat — and write an Rx for an antibiotic. Seems my throat is swelling up bad enough to close off my Eustachian tubes and make my ear hurt due to pressure and a lack of drainage.
First time I’ve seen this doctor (places tend to have a changing staff), but he’s an older gentleman. Not gruff, but maybe a hair ornery. The important thing: No nonsense. He didn’t waste any of my time, he didn’t sugar coat anything, he didn’t leave me guessing. Saw him for maybe five minutes. A lot of people complain about short doctor visits, but if the doctor is up front and tells me what’s up I’d prefer it that way — don’t waste any more of my time, or make anyone else wait, so that you can ask me asinine unrelated stuff or chit-chat. There’s a waiting room full of people out there; I get it.
Now, then comes time to deal with the pharmacy.
It took over an hour. None of my medicine had to be made on the spot — nobody was mixing any potion up, nobody was carving a pill out of some rare mineral that a guy had to scale a mountain for. It was two sets of pills, one for congestion and one for the bacteria making my throat swell shut. The process for filling this prescription?
Pour some from one bottle onto the little pill trap contraption and slide the correct number of into the drop slide so they would fall into the tube. I’m a pretty forgiving guy so maybe they were busy. I was polite and calm despite the fact I could literally feel my throat constricting as I waited. But the people there?
A bunch of rude dicks.
Any medicine that is simply doled out mechanically should be served to me by a machine. I walk in with a prescription from the doctor — even a printed bar code — and I give it to the machine. It reads it, asks me if my medicine is (X). Then it shows a picture of the pill I’m supposed to take and dispenses the right number into a bottle, prints the label, and drops them out. I then look at the pill. Does it match the picture? Does the description sound right? Good, next medicine or patient. They could even put these motherfuckers in the doctor’s waiting room. It wouldn’t be difficult to secure.
You could probably even do most mixed medicines the same way — they have drink machines now where you select your drink of choice and it mixes the soda syrup with the carbonated water on the spot.
However, until that day… I’m looking for a small pharmacy ran by a person who isn’t a dickbag.