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Saturday, October 15, 2011

Not My Best Day

So, as I stated in my last post, I love giving flu shots (or any immunization for that matter). However, on Thursday I definitely had THE worst experience of my career. I had an eleven-year-old try to bite me! I have never seen a child so out of control. At one point he was hissing at me!  I actually have shoe scuff marks on the wall of my immunization room that are about four feet off the ground. Now this child is not mentally challenged. He is being treated for ADD but this was something else all together. I refused to help restrain him so his mom and sister did while I took a dive between them and got him in the thigh. It really bothered me! Not because he was being forced to get this shot, because children often have to be forced to get what is best for them. It bothered me because now he will never trust me or another pharmacist again. His mother had to be so "forceful" that I'm sure he had some bruises the next day. That's all I need is for his school teacher to ask how he got those bruises and have him tell her "the pharmacist did this to me". We just aren't trained in how to handle these situations. I personally don't have children and have very little patients for this kind of thing but everyone said I handled it really well. The funniest part was that while this was going on in the shot room there was a lobby full of other people waiting to get their flu shot. It wasn't pretty and it wasn't fun. I normally would have given him the Flumist but we have been unable to get any this year. I offered to call other pharmacies to see if anyone else had it but Mom was insistent that I give the vaccine because everyone in the family had come to me and was impressed with how "good" I was. That's nice and I appreciate the loyalty but this was really not pleasant for anyone involved. I have my opinion about why the child acted this way but I will keep that to myself. My whole staff is laughing about it now (as am I) but I really could have done without that experience. It was actually a two day process because he came in on Wednesday and acted this way so Mom took him home. They were back and waiting on me when I got to work the next afternoon. What a way to start a shift!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

It's Back!

  Yes, it's back. Flu shot season is upon us. I don't know about the rest of you but I love giving flu shots. I don't know what it is that I love so much but I do. Maybe it's the one-on-one contact with patients. Maybe it's because most of the people receiving them actually want your service (as opposed to that MAJOR inconvenience of our counseling them on a med they've been taking for 20 years). Or maybe it's the satisfaction of knowing that I am helping my community stay healthy thru the flu season. Or maybe I'm just a masochist and like sticking people with a needle, who knows. What ever the reason I love it. I don't love trying to fit it into my work-flow, but I have an awesome staff that makes it run like clockwork so even that isn't too bad. I don't love my company's total, complete concentration on the subject by setting goals and running contests. That kind of thing cheapens the service and takes the professionalism out of it, but what can you do. A corporation is always going to focus on quantity rather than quality. It's up to us as the professionals to put that kind of thing into perspective and coach our staff on proper procedure and not cutting corners just to meet goals or win contests. And, oh yeah, we still have prescriptions to fill so we can't put flu-shot "blinders" on and forget everything else. But taking all of that into consideration, I still love the simple act of sitting down with a patient, talking to them about what they are going to receive then administering the vaccine.