I’m not comfortable filling this Rx

Good Faith Policy or Opiophobic Pharmacist ? Why would anyone spend their hard earned money in any store that treats you like this..? This is the Pharmacy that America Trusts ?


84 Responses

  1. Clearly these pharmacists have no idea what withdrawal does to a person’s body. Esp when they have pain to deal with as well. I’ve been on sites and have heard many LEGITIMATE chronic pain patients that are actively withdrawing because they were refused their scripts. Not EARLY scripts, not dose changed scripts, not a different doctor or pharmacy, so those are bullshit excuses. I’m married to a prescriber and there is no PharmD that can rival his education and training. Yes, you do know alot more about individual medications. Do you really think doctors have time to do it all? That’s what the hell you went to school for. But to think that you have more knowledge of what is right for a patient, when you haven’t followed them for years, seen their medical records, etc is complete crap. The minute they changed the pharmacy degree to a doctorate program, and you were able to have that title, you start using it as if you ARE EQUAL to a medical doctor…..YOU. ARE. NOT. If you question a script, have the decency to call the office and try and figure it out. I was head pharmacy tech for years in the 90’s. I know things have changed, but I also know the lies and bullshit we tell people we don’t want to deal with. There Is DISCRIMINATION and judgments put onto us patients daily. You don’t have a right to look at me and say “you don’t look sick”. Well I’m so sorry that I still try to appear somewhat human. That I try and put a brave face on. No one sees all the tears I shed daily from suffering. I’ve been in pain for half of my life. I didn’t ask for this shit, and I would do ANYTHING to he completely better. It’s also not helpful to discredit the diagnosis of fibromyalgia. Whether you accept it or not, it is a REAL disorder. I have to exist with it. Plus interstitial cystitis. Have you ever pissed razor blades that are on fire? Cause that’s my day EVERYDAY. How about you guys try it for 6 months and we’ll see if you don’t want pain managment. And then we get to the fact that PLENTY of pharmacists and techs have been accused or arrested and convicted of stealing and abusing medications themselves. One asshole said he took Oxy 30 for his “aching feet from 12 hour shifts “. I wish I only had aching feet!!! My husband sometimes works 48 hr shifts, get over yourself. So, we get labeled addicts, while the real addicts are right in front of us. I can promise this: if I go through a withdrawal because of refusal, and have to be hospitalized for complications, I WILL BE LEGALLY COMING AFTER THE PHARMACIST WHO REFUSED ME. If I ever feel I have to end my life because no one will help me, I will leave enough evidence so that my family can take down the pharmacy and/or pharmacist. I’m well educated and know the system, and I’m done with the games. And for the idiot who talked about the person doing the video being “illegal in some states” the patient said at the end that they were recording and she said she didn’t care. So if you INFORM someone then it isn’t illegal. Thank God there are still pharmacists like Steve out there, fighting this battle with us. You PharmD’s need to get your ego in check a bit. Doctors have far more to lose than you guys do, so if they are willing to do these things, who the hell are you to stand in the way. This is a way that you guys feel power over the doctors you could never become. Poor you!!

  2. And just to be clear these aholes,are NOT CHECKING anythinG, THE FIRST WORDS OUT OF,THEIR MOUTHS ARE WE DONT,HAVE THIS OR WE CANT FILL THIS. They do not ask,whats wrong with me or anything whatsoever.it is pure discrimination.

  3. True, it IS a bit of bs. One PhD told me at a counseling seminar: “Your just trying to sound good,” while puffing a cigarette. Yeah, true I answered. But isn’t that a good thing? I mean, if it sounds good it perhaps is palatable or plausable. That was long ago. Stating references would have perhaps offered more case in point facts. Keep it short and simple. Or just keep your opinion to one’s self. Better enunciated answers with simplistic point in facts are all we sometimes can offer.

  4. Who ultimately decides? The 9 Supremes (US Sumpreme Court)aptly are the purveyors of decisions. Those 5 to 4 decisions are in themselves ,capricious, arbitrary, and therefore unconstitutional. But, they are the decisions none the less.One example: Justice Antonin Scalia’s opinion on the Court’s rendering of a case of a pro golfer. This young man, a cohort of Tiger Woods, had a crippling condition that rendered him unable to ambulate the golf course and the rigorous 18 holes of walking that distance. Ultimately, the court ruled 5-4 in favor of allowing the disabled golfer a waiver to use a cart instead of ambulating the distance. Scalia, in dissent argued:” Soon, the court may be asked if a little leaguer with ADHD should be allowed 4 strikes instead of three.

  5. A bit too cut and dry on the last one. Apples and oranges? Can’t understand the reason one’s filled and the other is in a different city. We don’t have instant replay to review the officials call. After review the infraction is nullified and the offense is awarded the call. Safe but outflanked and two see it different. 1st down.

  6. As a pharmacy technician, I have come across many, many instances where pharmacists have refused to fill antibiotics, blood pressure and cholesterol medications because they would interfere with a patient’s current regimen, and/or were a duplicate therapy. Often from the same doctor/office. Lots of doctors will admit they aren’t nearly as knowledgeable in medication as pharmacists. As a technician, I’ve even had nurses and physician assistant’s ask me for information, clarification. It is a pharmacist’s duty to protect the patient, but unfortunately, they now have to protect themselves. In a country where the disparity in the ratio between primary care doctors and patients is overwhelming, pharmacists are in the middle. When a mistake is made by a doctor (which literally happens every day) they fix it. God forbid one mistake happens on their shift, they now have to fight for their livelihood.

    In the video, we do not get background, refill history (early fills? constantly increasing doses? other medications?) or any other info. The pharmacist does have a right to say they are uncomfortable not filling in a prescription because the law says they must use their professional judgement whether a prescription is valid, and validity covers many points/areas. Now, if they filled this medication and the patient had a subsequent negative reaction (OD, allergic reaction, death, etc) you’d all by asking for the pharmacist’s head.

    You can’t have it both ways. You either allow the pharmacist to be a licensed healthcare provider, or a fast-food pill dispenser. The end.

  7. Now thats bs i went to the aame walgreens for a year or longer same pharmacist knew me and my parents and was very kind, then one day he tells,me oh i can no longer fill for you, because,my dr moved to a town 10 min further away in the SAME COUNTY. Even though i LIVE 2 minutes from the walgreens. So he told me to go to the walgreens in that town and id have no problem. I followed his instructions and was told this same bs im mot comfortable by TWO different walgreens! I and then i went to another one and they then tOLld me i can no loNger fill at any walgreens ajd wpuld not gove ke ANY reason, I FOLLOWED ALL THE RULES AND INSTRUCTIONS . This is why i have not shoppe. at this sickening store in close to 2 year’s. And by the way i was NOT EVEN ON SCHEDULE 2 DRUGS AT THAT TIME I WAS ON NORCO 4 a day, and in line right In front of me i saw A woman who LOOKED exactly like youd picture a drug seeking addict to look like very skinny and just her look and demeanor. And yet she got her OXYS AND ROXYS ajd i believe one was even oxycontin, THIS IS WHY THIS IS SOOO MADDENING, IF YOU REFUSE ONE PERSON FOR NO GOOD REASON OR no reason at all just based on your OPINION, then you should be refusing to fill EVERYONE’S PAIN PRESCRIPTIONS.

  8. Seems like a “Slippery Slope Scenerio”. It may soon become the solemn duty for the dispenser to protect a individual for what they might do “according to Garp.” Conspiracy to likely misuse a controlled legal product on the basis of race, hygiene, intractable illness, poverty, or playing it safe for the uncomfortable person in need of direction the individual may not empirically provide. Pity or pride.Pain or protracted indiscriminate prejudice of the patients predilection of what is unknown but somehow not within good ethical redeeming social value

  9. their*

  10. First of all the majority of you who are against the pharmacist are making claims based on your own emotions. The phrase “I’m not comfortable” means “I feel this script is invalid currently for some reason or another”. This could be any assortment of things, it could be an obscene quantity or dosing, it could be too early, there could an issue with the Directions, or the signature, or even the paper its written on. Now judging from the little you get in the video, you hear her say, you got a month’s supply, this leads me to believe that perhaps the film maker either was trying to pick up early, mostly from a dosage increase. Now people like to come in and say “Well the doctor upped my dosage so I’m out”, which generally can be worked around, but with CII’s that’s a different story. At best you can call and confirm with the doctor and apply your own judgment, which, surprise is what Pharmacists went to school to do. At worst you have to say no. No pharmacists is obligated to fill any prescription early, especially a CII. Lost your medication, sorry you’ll have to come back 2-3 days early at most with a new Rx. Going on vacation? You’ll have to get it filled where you’re going. In the end there’s no reason you should ever be out of a medicine, because you yourself know how much you have left, and you are responsible for managing that, not the pharmacist. “You’re lack of planning is not our emergency.” Basically if a bank wouldn’t do it for you, were should not be doing it for you, or are you going to help out the pharmacist when they get audited for helping you out and gave you your narcotics early, or when someone becomes sick or dies from an overdosing?

  11. She could have just done like every other pharmacy in town and lied about not having it in stock. Would that be better?

  12. But do you guys not understand that there is an epidemic of people abusing pills? I’m sure this pharmacist has seen and heard everything in the book. It’s not hard to tell if a script is legit or not. If it’s really for your “chronic pain” then why don’t you get it filled at the same place every month? We can see these things in our state databases. Sorry, but there’s nothing discriminatory about this. These medications are HIGHLY addictive and also HIGHLY abused. Maybe if the DEA would crack down on doctors who hand these scripts out instead of the pharmacists and pharmacies who merely dispense the medication, it would be easier for you to get your legit script filled.

    • Suggest you watch this http://www.medispan.com/videos/controlled-substances/ former DEA attorney.. about half way thru in Q&A .. he was asked that very question,, His answer was that the DEA gets more “bang for their buck” in the media fining the BIG BOYS.. than raiding Dr John Jones practice.

    • Bee..are you a pharmacist? because you sure dont sound like one or if you are, you have swallowed way too much corporate kool-aid. The media and the opioiodphobic officals are playing this up because they need your votes and their jobs. While I agree heroin and meth use is probably up, its because the current administration refuses to secure the borders and 80-90% of it is coming thru with the illegals via the gangs and cartels…get your heads outta the sand! As Steve pointed out in a previous post 6% of pain med users may be mis-using…that makes 94% of the MILLIONS OF USERS LEGIT! So where’s your epidemic? I would say your epidemic is in the hundreds of UNDERTREATED pain patients who decide they cant deal with it anymore and sadly choose to check out of life by swallowing their entire bottle of pain meds with a gin chaser and it gets labeled an ‘accidental overdose’ in the media to add to the hysteria. I would rather use my 28 yrs of experince as a phamacist, know my community and its surrounding AREAS so I know what doctors and types of patients I can expect (is it heavily factory, industrialized as in steelworks, ironworks..I used to work in NW IN, agricultural, city, etc) and use that knowledge to fill pain meds appropriately and and then do my best to screen out the bad ones. But I’d rather make sure I’m usually filling the good ones. GOOD, SOLID documetation first and formost the best defense.

      • What I get from this is that you are not a pharmacist in FL. Come work here for a few weeks and tell me what you think.

  13. Steve, you have lost all my respect as a pharmacist. I know you are a computer programmer who once worked a little retail pharmacy. Times have changed and there are plenty of quack doctors out there now that we have protect our licenses against. Wake up to reality.

    • I will consider that a compliment that I lost your respect.. and how quaint about the “little retail pharmacy”… which I happened to OWN and built the business from day one.. as well as expanding it to be the largest HME dealer in two counties.. How many successful businesses have you started..? To date I’ve done FOUR. Oh that’s right.. you have sold you license/soul to a corporate pharmacy. You just keep on using your professional discretion as dictated by your corporate employer and odds are.. it will come back and bite you in the ass and your corporate employer will pull something out of policies and procedure manual that says you violated something and thus they are blameless and the financial liability will be all on you.

  14. Report her ASS

  15. Can anyone explain the exponential growth in the prescribing of oxycodone 30mg over the past 8 years?

  16. Thank you Steve, easy to tell who would not take the time to call the Dr from these posts. Pray that all are reporting and recording

  17. Let guess oxycodone 30mg from a “pill mill” md.

  18. I wonder what state this is. There are many states where recording someone without their knowledge is a crime….

  19. As a pharmacist, we are not required to fill a prescription just because a doctor writes it. We are all quite familiar with doctors that are doing nothing more than feeding drug addiction and diversion. Go find a quality doctor and receive proper pain management treatment. Better yet, go to school and earn your PharmD. Then you can decide to fill opiates for drug addicts and junkie doctors.

  20. She should be fired immediately. She is NOT a doctor. Her whole job is to FILL scripts written by REAL DOCTOR nothing else. She doesn’t feell “comfortable” – does this mean she’s not comfortable having a job? Um – yes.

    • She probably is a doctor. And she has every right to refuse to fill a prescription.

    • I can see that you don’t want to fill it but if this is a reg every time I can’t see why u couldn’t fill that script. And you wonder y you’d are robbed.

  21. Go to another pharmacy, or won’t anyone fill the prescription ? Wonder why ? And what drug ( drug, strength, dosage ) ? Why isn’t it mentioned ?

  22. If a PHD gives u a script then what makes a pharmacist have any right to question it???? Messed up big time

    • First, it would be an MD or a DO prescribing the medication. Second, a PharmD has equal responsibility in the filling of the medicatio . Therefore, they have the right to refuse to fill any prescription based on their professional judgment. More or less, pharmacists don’t go to school to earn a degree entitle ‘Physician’s Bitch.’

      • I keep asking every pharmacist that makes the statement that they can refuse to fill any prescription based on their professional judgment to show me where the law is. I have read both the Code of Federal Regulations title 21 and the Florida statute 465 (Pharmacy Manual) and 21 U.S.C. #309, and do not find such language. In fact, I have read statements published by D.E.A. representatives that indicate the opposite. The D.E.A. has stated that the recent actions to prevent prescription drug abuse and deaths were not intended to prevent legitimate medical patients from obtaining their necessary medications. According to what I have read from the D.E.A. their crackdown has been to require pharmacies to properly verify necessary prescription documentation and verify the prescription is for a legitimate medical purpose and is appropriate for that medical purpose. However, once that requirement has been completed the prescription must be filled. The D.E.A. has indicated in some publications that they will be enforcing the law requiring pharmacies to fill properly verified prescriptions. I have not seen this yet but, I hope they do this soon. The bottom line in my opinion is that all prescriptions require proper verification and once they have been verified there is a responsibility for a pharmacist to fill it. I do not find any place in either federal or Florida law that allows a pharmacist to refuse to verify a prescription and then refuse to fill it. The same applies to a pharmacist that refuses to fill all controlled medications which seems to be the case in many situations. I welcome anyone who can show me any law that allows a pharmacist to refuse a prescription without verification for personal reasons. I have not seen any such regulation.

        • Enforcement Administration, Office of Diversion Control, has published the “Pharmacist’s Manual: An Informational Outline of the Controlled Substances Act” which states as follows:
          A pharmacist also needs to know there is a corresponding responsibility for the pharmacist who fills the prescription. An order purporting to be a prescription issued not in the usual course of professional treatment or in legitimate and authorized research is an invalid prescription within the meaning and intent of the CSA (21 U.S.C. § 829). The person knowingly filling such a purported prescription, as well as the person issuing it, shall be subject to the penalties provided for violations of the provisions of law relating to controlled substances.
          A pharmacist is required to exercise sound professional judgment when making a determination about the legitimacy of a controlled substance prescription. Such a determination is made before the prescription is dispensed. The law does not require a pharmacist to dispense a prescription of doubtful, questionable, or suspicious origin. To the contrary, the pharmacist who deliberately ignores a questionable prescription when there is reason to believe it was not issued for a legitimate medical purpose may be prosecuted along with the issuing practitioner, for knowingly and intentionally distributing controlled substances. Such action is a felony offense, which may result in the loss of one’s business or professional license (see United States v. Kershman, 555 F.2d 198 [United States Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit, 1977]).42
          Those states that specifically prohibit pharmacists from dispensing in certain situations include the following:
          – Colorado – no licensee or registrant shall compound, dispense, deliver, or distribute any drug to any person in such quantity or in any situation where the licensee or registrant knows or reasonably should know said drug has no recognized utility or application43
          – Florida – pharmacist is prohibited from dispensing without first determining, in the exercise of his or her professional judgment, that the prescription order is valid

          This gives me the right to use ‘sound professional judgment’ and specifically states that the law does not require an pharmacist to dispense questionable or suspicious prescriptions. It continues that a pharmacist AND THE ISSUING PRACTITIONER may be prosecuted. Therefore, just because your doctor writes it that doesn’t mean I have to fill it. If I believe in my sound professional judgment that your prescription is not being appropriately prescribed, I can refuse to fill it.

  23. Several Walgreens in Florida was raided because they were filling bogus prescriptions to sell on the street for their financial gain. So, because of that, they put in certain policies and procedures to protect themselves, but we shouldn’t have to be refused a medication we need for a better quality of life, because of their mistakes in Florida. It’s not fair. They are just trying to cover their asses not including their financial asses, From more fines by the federal government and causing us pain, lack of pain relief and anxiety relief, just because they messed up big time. Everyone, look up Walgreens and their new list of procedures to deal w prescriptions, any prescriptions. It’s a new” checklist” they put in place after this big scandal in Florida. It’s most definitely wrong. They ended up w fines of almost 700 million dollars.

  24. There’s a VERY definitive difference between not feeling comfortable filling for [x] reason or putting the pharmacists license at risk and what she had the audacity to say.

    “I don’t feel comfortable filling this medication at all..”

    That’s where the weight of the subjective discrimination comes in.

    Does she have a list of medications she doesn’t feel comfortable filling?

    I fear what all may be included on her list.

    Does her employer know that they are spending money stocking prescriptions that she is refusing to fill because she doesn’t feel comfortable filling them?

    There are so many questions that come to mind by her taking it from a professional assessment to personal opinion. Period.

  25. I heard the rph say, yep they changed the quantity but the directions are still 6 a day. Tells me this was likely an early refill or there was a question with the directions. Thank the dr’s who over prescribed for illegitamite purposes and the pharmacies who filled without question those same prescriptions. The epidermic of prescription overdose deaths that resulted from unscrupulous prescribing has put true pain patients in a bad position I have no doubt. However, you can’t blame the pharmacist who is trying to tow the line required by the DEA

    • Talk about generalizations, unscrupulous? sheesh. Do you really think that all the doctors (outside of the rogue pill mill clowns) weren’t trying to help their patients?
      Tow the DEA’s line? How about some corresponding responsibility lying w/ those creeps @ the DEA? The doctor’s DEA # has to be active, valid, and therefor in good standing with the agency in order for the Rx to even be written in the first place right? IF the DEA’S official legal stance against the pharmacy is that there is a problem with the prescribing physician and their prescribing practices (they always claim they don’t stand in the way of legit patients getting their Rx) how can they expect WAGS and other pharmacies not to fill for these doctors patients when they keep right on letting the doctor write them? They have the ability to stop these at the source yet do nothing in most cases until the bodies are already stacked up to the ceiling. Who is more culpable?
      I don’t see how that isn’t clearly a no lose strategy for a pharmacy in courtroom or BOP,pr Medical Board hearings/proceedings. If there’s a problem with the doctor or what he is prescribing why is the DEA coming down on pill jockeys rather than the doctor and not suspending these doctor’s license pending investigating? THAT is THEIR JOB. Who has more information available to make a decision like this, a lone pharmacist,(basically guessing/stereotyping patients and doctors), a pharmacy chain, or a Federal Agency who SUPPOSEDLY regulates these things?
      No clear guidelines are ever given to help doctors, pharmacists, or whole sale distributors know if they are doing the right thing. My guess is they realize if they have it down on paper they ARE practicing medicine w/out a license and it could come back to haunt them.

      If you will read WAGS good faith dispensing document it states that when an Rx is refused, the information has to be passed along to the DEA, even if no laws were broken (just enough ‘red flags’ to disqualify the patient), oftentimes threatening to call the police if the customer does not leave the store. I would say ok go ahead call the police what are they going to arrest you for? IF the pharmacists actually took the time to go through all these GFD policy steps they couldn’t fill more than 30 Rx a day so instead of protesting they let the corps pull the puppet strings and they/you dance; just shooing away legit patients like annoying flies instead. There is no way they are checking off all this crap, too much busy work/hoops to jump through, and too time consuming. The same strategy used to cut down on hydrocodone dispensing w/ its up-scheduling (IMO).

      Just make it too big of a hassle and w/ too many regs that make it easy to run afoul of policy and they are right to assume doctors and pharmacists will just rather not deal with it, sadly they came to the right conclusion at the expense of long suffering patients, AGAIN. I bet if everyone hung around for the police to show up, WAGS operations would grind to a standstill. Maybe this should be a new strategy. It may be time for the sufferers to start using trifling tactics as well.

      IF the Rx is legit and from a doctor in good standing w/ an active DEA registration number then what’s with WAGS passing on a patients information to the DEA over ‘red flags’ like being on an Rx for over 6 mos or newly diagnosed patients w/ a new Rx w/ no prior history or living/being treated too far from the pharmacy. There are no LAWS against these circumstances!!!
      I am assuming that this violates implied confidentiality. CORPORATIONS CANNOT BE EXPECTED TO PROVIDE INFORMATION THAT IS NOT EVEN AVAILABLE TO LAW ENFORCEMENT THROUGH A STATE’S PDMP SYSTEM!!!!! Law enforcement needs a warrant or an open investigation to seek information from state PDMPs, though they are trying like hell to avoid doing so by using NSA information (supposedly for national security ONLY), parallel investigations, and other bullying and overtly unethical, UNCONSTITUTIONAL, and illegal tactics. The State of Oregon and the ACLU are in court now to prevent such overtly illegal actions in that state. The outcome of this trial is bound to have ripple effects across the country whichever side ‘wins’.You apparently would rather knuckle under to oppression than do what is right. Thank god there are some pharmacists left that have a conscience.

      The DEA’s special operations division is currently collecting information about you/us with help from (NSA, IRS, FBI, and the Dept of Homeland Security) and abusing citizen’s 4th amendment rights. They are withholding evidence (even from judges and DA’s) as to the origin of how an investigation starts. This obviously violates the 14th amendment’s guarantee of due process. No defendant can fight charges unless they know the facts of the REAL probable cause and subsequent indictment, especially if there is none that are legal. WAKE UP FRIEND, burying your head in the sand and looking out for #1, you are bound to step in #2.

      How many posts, just on this site alone have we read that a pharmacy or PM clinic gets raided then read that the DEA AND local law enforcement have been investigating them for many months, even YEARS in some cases. If the lame brained pill jockeys ;ike you, would could grow a pair, and band together instead of knuckling under to every whim of an out of control agency, and file suit, then MAYBE pharmacists can address the fact that THEY TOO ARE BEING DISCRIMINATED AGAINST.

      We are all blaming and fixating our anger/frustration on the wrong sources. Patients w/ legit pain issues are mad at dopers and pharmacists and the pharmacists are blaming the dopers/pain patients (they SHOULD be able to ascertain that there is a difference yet some don’t) and doctors and claiming that they are put in an impossible position. YOU ARE ALLOWING YOURSELF TO BE PUT IN AN IMPOSSIBLE POSITION. Whistle-blower, ever hear of the term?

      Stand up for your rights under the LAW. IMO this advice and guidance through postings about what the laws are and what they mean are the best thing that Pharmacist Steve has brought to the table in response to this discrimination and ‘collateral damage’ of this insane war on liberty and freedom from fascist oppression. (Thank you P,Steve) To even keep our heads above water, pharmacists, doctors, and patients should all work TOGETHER. This is nigh impossible when judgemental know-it-all pharmacists like yourself think they are ‘better than’ their ‘annoying’ customers and think most are addicts when the reality is for every 10 you turn down you turn away 8-9 legit patients. How do you sleep at night knowing that you are robbing others of this much needed respite from pain?

      Only when opposition to DEA includes ALL affected players in this ‘game’ working together or at least towards the same goals of getting bureaucrats out of practicing medicine and setting policy (w/out written guidelines even) the bullying and persecution is going to continue.. These were not unforeseen circumstances when the regulatory and legislative screws were debated then tightened. They were expected. There are groups (visit STOPP) who flatly state they that their overall goal is to cut overall production of pain medications and overall access (no mention or regard for legit patients). They back these statements up w/ data from 2006-2009 and talk about it like it is happening TODAY not 5-7 years ago before newer regulations and laws were enacted.They are calling for the government to DO SOMETHING. What is left to do other than enforce a total ban on pain medication for anything but end of life care or cancer (like it is somehow worse than any other pain). False stats are thrown up in regards to lethal amounts of drugs. One graphic on their website lists diazepam and alprazolam ODs and lethal amounts. To the best of my knowledge, i’m just a patient who is eager to learn and not a health professional, but from my understanding benzodiazepines are almost impossible to overdose on. They are prescribed over other sedatives precisely because they are extremely safe in regards to lethal outcomes, even in attempted suicides. This is all true UNLESS THEY ARE TAKEN W/ OTHER CNS DEPRESSANTS LIKE ALCOHOL AND OPIOIDS. These are the uneducated blame seeking folks who are driving the agenda today and along w/ PROP, and the DEA, are the REAL opposition and witch-hunters. Cutting off legit supplies to legit patients isn’t going to bring their loved ones back or stop any new ODs (they’ll just OD on heroin now instead). Stand up & make the bureaucrats be held accountable. It is THEIR job to enforce the laws (unless pharmacists were supplied w/ a badge number and became secret agents w/out my knowledge, did you get yours Anonymous?).

      Congress has already voted in favor of defunding the DEA on other blatantly discriminatory and excessively repressive actions. Here is a link on defunding the DEA from raiding legal marijuana dispensaries.
      And yes it was passed by The US House of Representatives. IF we apply enough pressure on Congress and State legislatures, I believe we can gain some satisfaction as well on this issue but not if we continue the infighting among ourselves while ignorant bureaucrats unlawfully set the standards of care (attach blinders)in our ‘health system’.

      If all arguing parties could band together I do NOT see why Congress cannot do the same to end the discrimination against pharmacists, doctors, and legitimate patients with pain as they have helped legit MM patients/purveyors.
      If we are left w/ MJ and tramadol to treat pain, god help us.

      WAGS policy discriminates, period. One red flag is using the current C-II med for over 6 mos, Another because there is no history of use. So unless you are a regular customer, the rph agrees w/ your doctor’s treatment plan, and you limit the length of treatment to 6 mos then you have a chance of getting your Rx filled, if you catch the rph or PIC on a good day.

      Please wake up and REALIZE exactly WHO THE ENEMY IS HERE, it is not who they (DOJ/DEA) want you to believe it is. It’s THEM!!!!!!!


      -To those who plan to write your Congressman/woman here’s an idea:

      Just my opinion here but when writing your Congressman give them the whole story. I know that PAIN is the one thing we have in common but let them know if you have an INCURABLE DISEASE STATE. Let them know if it you have systemic or multi-organ involvement, Note the # of failed surgeries if this is the source of your pain, Let them know that having untreated or under-treated pain can and does affect every other problem and symptom that you have by increased stress/anxiety, lack of sleep/rest, increased blood pressure, heart rate, depression, limited mobility,etc. We take these things for granted but for those uninitiated to the world we live in it can be easily overlooked. They may think, Ok so they have some pain to deal w/, so does everyone, live with it. BUT….Once you give them the run down then they can see that untreated/under-treated pain IS but ONE issue, BUT the ONE, if not addressed that can send the entire edifice crashing down, resulting in increased disease activity and can in some lead to fatalities (just as dead as an OD’d stiff)

      We need to educate people and let them know how these new laws, regulations,ingrained stereotypes, institutional discrimination, and increased barriers to treatment affect us and how many patients with vastly different diagnosis’, are all represented among us..

      Signing Chronic Pain Patient is a little generic IMO and is more easily written off. That is just MY opinion BUT I think if we were to provide the BIG PICTURE for them, we might just succeed in gaining allies in Congress and our State Legislatures and possibly turn the tide of this unethical and oppressive onslaught upon our dignity and human rights.

      Example (myself)
      1-Autoimmune: (lupus ‘overlap’/Mixed Connective Tissue Disease: (how Dx) laboratory findings +ANA & + anti-U1 RNP antibodies), symptoms, imaging
      2-systemic sarcoidosis dx: biopsy Johns Hopkins University Hospital: neurological dysfunction-EMG/Nerve conduction studies, complete urological workup, granulmatous involvement/biopsy, active inflammation, evidence of fibrosis-scar tissue, PFTs.

      -Endocine dysfunction-Hypothyroid, VitaminD/calcium dysregulation, no testosterone production(not low T/NO T), cortisol dependent.
      -Autonomic dysfunction (dysautonomia)-GI/esophageal dysmotility, urinary dysfunction, tachycardia, anxiety attacks,
      -chronic muscle spasms/seizing (polymyositis component of MCTD). Peripheral neuropathy (SFN), spondylosis, arthritis, chronic bursitis, Reynauds, headaches, chronic pulmonary involvement-including respiratory arrest/miracle to be here, chronic aspiration induced infections, chronic inflammation, granulomatous involvement, GERD, chronic anemia, nausea, fatigue, skin involvement, and widespread nerve/joint/muscle PAIN.

  26. YEP! This is what is happening every where, everyday here in FL Steve. I really hope that more patients start adding on to this U tube. This is horrible healthcare treatment and these pharmacists want to be recognized as our healthcare providers? I don’t understand why gives them to right to deny a doctor orders? This sure sounds illegal to me. This fight is not over and will not ever over until every legitimate pain patient has their legally prescribed, medically necessary, vital medication for their legitimate pain conditions!

  27. Some pharmacists are under pressure from their employers to “have a pretty good reason” to fill narcotics. One major chain has had their pharmacists sign a document stating explicitly what is their “corresponding responsibility” including provisions such as the prescription has to be written within 20 miles of the pharmacy. Again, the pharmacists are just the peons in this scenario, and so are the sups. It comes from the TOP!

    • I have heard this comment about distance from either home or the prescriber being a reason for denial. Once again, I do not see this in any part of the pharmacist handbook, C.F.R., or my state statute (Florida). It may be that law enforcement officers or DEA officers are telling pharmacists to watch for this, but I do not see it in the law. If anyone has seen any geographical requirements please post it here so I can research this issue.

      • Are you a pharmacist?

      • This could be company policy, buisnesses can put limitations in there policies. Also, having a physician – pharmacist relationship is good. A pharmacist has to be cautious of physicians and patients when there are doctors witting scripts for money, patients seeking, etc. Also, patient -pharmacist relationship should be established, if the patient has been going to the same pharmacy they will not be denied and miss doses. When you are new we have to take appropriate steps. I would personally find out if you are established at another pharmacy, your reason for switching, etc. Part of our coresponsibility second to patient safety is community safety.

      • Massachusetts now has a law regarding C2’s written in non-contiguous states. ADHD medications are valid once verified from out of state, but any pain C2 not written in Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Connecticut, Rhode Island or New York is not fillable.

  28. As in im not comfortable risking my license filling this prescription. A pharmacist can refuse to fill anything if filling it could jeopardize their license. OUR license, not yours. Period.

    • I think you need to read the federal statutes title 21 before you make this kind of statement. I see no place in the C.F.R. which indicate a pharmacist has a unilateral right to refuse to fill a prescription for any reason he/she sees fit. However, this is going to be decided very soon in courts accross our country. Thank God for people like Steve who are leading patients into filing complaints and lawsuits against the pharmacists who are refusing to abide by their pharmacy oath. After the next few years of pharmacists having to spend hugh amounts to defend thier decisions maybe they will think twice about refusing to fill legitimate prescriptions. In my opinion It all boils down to pharmacist do have a right to refuse to fill a questionable prescription, but they do not have the right to refuse a legitimate prescription properly written, for a legitimate medical purpose, and verified by the practitioner. I am not an attorney, but I do have a juris doctor degree and am fairly competent at legal research. I would like to see a few attorneys comment on this site about this point it would help many of us who are considering legal action to reach a conclusion.

    • Clearly, YOU are ridiculous! Risking their license to fill a doctor approved prescription that the patient obviously had been taken prior? Whatever.

      • Pharmacists have been fired, arrested, and lost their license all while filling these ‘legitimate’ prescriptions. Go to school, get your PharmD, and then you can use your professional judgment to determine whether or not you ate comfortable risking your own livelihood to dispense these prescriptions to the 50 people a day that come in seeking them.

        • If you are AFRAID to,do your jobs then maybe you need to sue based on hostile work environment??? I wasnt told that you were not comfortable filling for all the times i was prescribed Levaquin even though that drug ruins lives and has destroyed my tendons., why are you comfortable filling that poison that hurts soo many people? How bout doing simple background checks and if you see someone has criminal records for drug related things THEN that would be a reason to deny people their prescription but not for no reason just based on your OPINION.which is discrimination.

          • Denying proscriptions based on criminal background is discrimination and illegal. Denying a fill based on my analysis of the medication being filled, the trends of a prescriber, the diagnoses, medication and fill history, etc is called professional judgment and is perfectly legal


          • And the hostile working environment is created by the patients….

            • you pharmacists who wana be doctors keep using the excuse. Of your “afraid”of losing ur license etc wow wake up cowards

      • I know this is completely hard to believe, so I’ll link you a blog post from THIS VERY SITE.


        It was from a valid prescriber, right? He’s taken it before, right? I don’t see what the problem could possibly be!

  29. “The responsibility for the proper prescribing and dispensing of controlled substances is upon the prescribing practitioner, but a corresponding responsibility rests with the pharmacist who fills the prescription. An order purporting to be a prescription issued not in the usual course of professional treatment or in legitimate and authorized research is not a prescription within the meaning and intent of section 309 of the Act (21 U.S.C. 829) and the person knowingly filling such a purported prescription, as well as the person issuing it, shall be subject to the penalties provided for violations of the provisions of law relating to controlled substances. ”

    You don’t know the patients history with this pharmacy, or the pharmacists rationale for refusing the customers rx at this particular time; pharmacists are put into a situation now where they have to defend their license, their hard earned livelihood, thanks to the DEA (who should be going after the doctors, not the pharmacists), illegitimate scammers, and corporate policy.

    Pharmacist Steve, you are doing no service to retail pharmacists who are put in this unenviable position of trying to serve their patients and cover their butts at the same time. The pharmacists I work with go above and beyond to help customers get their pain meds, but it won’t be at the expense of possibly losing their license. You are painting these pharmacists as the opposition, when in reality they are walking a fine line. You of all people should know this. You obviously are on a campaign, but you are fighting and discrediting the wrong people.

    • If your filling a real prescription thay was verified w a doctor office then whats therethere to lose a license over? If a doctor felt the patient did not need it then hed write a prescription for a different med. This is ridiculous. If it bothers pharmacists so much then they need to file complaints w their bosses.or sue someone for harming innocent patients.

      • Know what? There are countless instances where pharms save patients asses by refusing to fill or choosing to verify with the provider.

        Just because it was verified by a provider does not mean it’s written correctly.

        Grow up. A pharmacy is not like the drive-thru at McDonald’s.

        • The poster of the video did not do a good job with details, therefore I see why you’d think this. However, I assume that he had been going to this pharmacy for quite awhile.
          I bet his prescription was for oxycodone, which is what I take. It’s considered a “powerful” narcotic, but when you are a chronic pain patient, all it is, is medicine that gives you the ability to function. Too bad this guy did not go into more detail with the pharmacist. I certainly don’t see pharmacies as “drive thru McDonalds” so a comment like that tells me that you are judgmental and think anyone who takes pain meds is a JUNKIE

    • Agreed. Even for PS, posting that vid was pretty low-handed and narrow-minded.

    • What about the responsibility of making sure a patient who has been filling the exact same prescription for over two years gets this medically necessary prescription before a medical crisis occurs? What about a pharmacist FORCING a legitimate patient to abruptly cease taking an opiate, causing vomiting, severe muscle cramping, huge spikes in blood pressure, rapid pulse, profuse sweating, dehydration, severe anxiety, not to mention being forced to endure intolerable pain. This has happened to me. Personally. And she is uncomfortable? Thank God for Steve, and these irresponsible pharmacists need to be held legally and morally responsible.This is NO game for me. Shame on you.

    • Anonymous, so are you asserting an opinion that a pharmacist has a right to refuse to fill a prescription based soley on the type of medication that pharmacist does not feel like he/she wants to fill? If so please show me any regulation that allows a pharmacist to refuse a prescription that they do not feel comfortable filling because of the type of medication. If so then I guess the next time I go to a pharmacy and try to fill a prescription for blood pressure medicine and the pharmacist refuses to fill it because he/she does not feel as if my blood pressure is high enough to warrant treatment I will have to agree and just go back to my doctor to try another treatment plan.

    • Well said!!!

  30. Videos like these are cheap shots. First they are taken completely out of context with only one minute filmed out of the whole engagement. Second we do not even know what is on the prescriptions handed in.
    I would like to see how many people would stand behind a pharmacist who filled these prescriptions and lost their job or get warnings from the pharmacy board.
    Blaming pharmacists for not filling pain meds is like the teenager blaming a convenience store employee for asking for an ID to purchase beer.
    Their are also knaves who would find a lawyer and sue the pharmacists ass because they took 20 of their oxycodones with a pint of gin.

    • It does not matter what the remainder of the discussion was. When the pharmacist refused to fill the prescription soley because “she did not feel comfortable” is not one of the reasons listed in the federal statues as I have read. I suggest that all pharmacists read the federal code title 21 commonly called the controlled substances act of 2010. There are specific reasons a pharmacist can refuse a prescription for a controlled medication and I have never seen the reason “I don’t feel comfortable filling this medication” in any part of this regulation. In fact it is very specific about the reasons for a pharmacist to refuse to fill. The section entitled “corresponding responsibility” describes the only legitimate reasons for a pharmacist to refuse a prescription. This section states, “The law does not require a pharmacist to dipense a prescription of doubtful, questionable, or supicious origin”. I do not see any indication in the laws I have read that would allow a pharmacist to refuse a prescription because they do not feel comfortable filling a particular medication. If it were so then a pharmacist could refuse to fill any number of medications I can think of that have severe complications such as chemo medications, relafen, viox and many other medications that have a valid medical use, but can cause extensive and severe side effects. I have never heard of a pharmacist refusing to fill any medication other than controlled medications because they are not comfortable filling them. If the same pharmacists that refuse to fill controlled medications were really doing so to protect the patient from harm then wouldn’t they refuse to fill all the other medications with known severe side effects? I believe that pharmacists are only refusing to fill in order to avoid having to do the proper verification required for controlled medications which is causing a great deal of extra work and they are attempting to avoid any possible ramifications from the DEA should they fill, in error, any prescription which may be questionable.

      • Yea, what is wrong with that when it is questionable? Furthermore, there is no way a pharmacist could explain “corresponsibilty” to a patient for him/her to understand without spend too time away from the other patients. So, “not feeling comfortable” is the line. Try to walk in the pharmacist’s shoes for a minute. it is their livelihood. Great job! by the way of explaining the law that governs all of pharmacy practices.

      • Read the federal controlled substance law? If you knew anything you would know that each state has their own laws and the strictest one applies. Also, read the law journals about how many pharmacists get sued for filling narcotic scripts which resulted in harm or injury. “Not comfortable” = I’m not going to get my ass sued by your family when you get hospitalized or die from this dose.

    • You must not be a chronic pain or chronic disease suffer, the pharmacist isn’t “comfortable” filling a prescription?? i’m not “comfortable” on a good day. And on a bad day it’s absolutley unbearable!! I’ve been through this before and don’t believe it is the pharncy’s place to decide what quality of life I am allowed to have, that is between my dr and myself!

  31. They Did This too me. I have Fibromyalgia, Ms, and Chronic pain from a bad accident. Walgreens told me the same thing. My Lawyer is in the process of during Walgreens in Upstate, Ny. They refused yo fill my fent. Patches cause “it was to high of a dose door someone like me. ” what gives them the right to play God. ? They also refused to fill my other 4 scripts as well.
    I looked at them and showed them proof of my illnesses and they looked at me and said ” BUT, YOU DON’T LOOK SICK!?” What the fuck is that shit? YOU DON’T LOOK SICK!? Obviously My Dr thinks I need This to maintain a half normal life. I mean for God sakes., I am 38 years old and have a 20, 18, 17, 16 year old children. Which my last 2 are graduating in 2015. What gives them the right to go by my age.
    I was in a terrible car wreck when I was 20 year old and I have trouble walking from that and the Ms.
    Just wished these asshats would stop playing God!!!!!!

    • You lost me at “I have fibromyalgia.” Sorry.

      • Lost = side effect of ignorance.

      • You’re an idiot. If you told me “I have a brain”, you would’ve “LOST” me on that. I would love to see you living with fibromyalgia for one day, and then tell me how lost you are. I have several serious medical conditions, and I also have fibro. I hardly mention it anymore because of asshats like you. If you knew anything about autoimmune disorders, you would clearly see why someone who suffers from MS (multiple sclerosis) would also have fibromyalgia.
        Go get educated, if it’s even possible.

  32. I’m not comfortable”

    No pass!

    The federal statute calls for the option of refusing to fill a prescription if the pharmacist feels it may not be for a legitimate cause.

    Therefore, NOT filling = NOT legitimate.

    The end

    “I’m not comfortable” is a lame, scripted
    Irresponsible response.

    The Rx is for the patients’ comfort.
    As if I care if the pharmacist is “comfortable” or not!

    Their comfort is their business.
    They never have used comfort as a reason not to fill in my entire career.
    It’s a lie.
    It’s not about comfort.
    It’s about fear

    That’s it.
    We are actually in an evidence-based business.
    We use evidence and probabilities to develop a diagnosis and plan.
    When there is NO evidence of selling

    We come down to comfort, and it’s a lie.
    A luxury.
    I don’t get to have “comfort” about my patients.
    I don’t see why the pharmacist is entitled to be comfortable either.

    And bullshit excuses like “overly friendly”
    When they give the Rx , then nervous and anxious afterwards while waiting is right out of the training video.

    Somebody let’s just tell the truth.

    • That did not make sense to me. Oh well either way i do not go visit a pharmacist to tell me what to,do for my conditions. That is what i go to my dr for. My conditions are nobodys business but mine and my dr. This needs to have a class action lawsuit cannot believe this is still allowed to happe, making so many people suffer unneccisarily plus i DETEST LIARS like the thousands of pharmacists who lie and say they dont have it. Wpuld you want a LIAR who discriminates working for you? I wouldnt.

    • Then go to school and be a pharmacist then. Douche

  33. Everyone should start recording them maybe then theyll stop this bs.!!

    • I’m with you. Between this video and the couple others that I’ve seen, I think that’s one of the absolute best (live) pieces of defense and documentation that we can have. Period.

      “I’m not comfortable filling this medication at all, honestly..”

      I CANNOT believe she in clear conscience said that out loud as a pharmacist/professional.

      Be well indeed.

      • Obviously, you are not a pharmacist. In short, all pharmacists are governed by state boards of pharmacy. This pharmacist is doing what is best for her and her career- not the patient. From this small clip, we don’t know if the patient is “pharmacy shopping” for drugs. The doctor’s therapy is appropriate or he/her specialty is pain management?… The pharmacist can do everything to verify is prescription and if anything happens to that patient with that medication. I will bet you that pharmacist would be disciplined their state board of pharmacy for what you think is the right thing to do. She know that would be her job, possibly her career. No one hires a pharmacist with a mark against their license like that. Pharmacist operate on a “co-responsibility” of therapy along with the doctor. The pharmacist is acting cautiously. Try to BOTH side of this situation.

        • Actually it’s pretty clear the customer is NOT pharmacy shopping. In the beginning if you listen closely the pharmacist says “We went through this yesterday…..” then “not comfortable filling this medication at 6 a day………..” so patient is obviously staying w/ this ONE (probably due to a contract) pharmacy and trying to be compliant………,,,,,,,,

          the patient says re:amount of pills “I was told……[inaudible]…….they were 150 and I went back and got it dropped down to 120,,,,,,,,,”

          So it seems that the customer was told the reason for not filling was that the amount was too high to fill. He went back to his doctor, had it lowered from 6 per day to 4, then brought it back only to find out that even though he had provided a remedy to solve his ‘situation’ that the remedy was just a BS excuse. It wasn’t the real reason because they were still NOT COMFORTABLE.(if it is for a pain med, 6 per day seems about right as they last 4-6 hours so certainly 120 at 4 per day should be ok as it is 1 per 6 hrs. I don’t know of ANY IR pain med that lasts longer than 6 hrs.

          Just be honest and upfront, if they weren’t going to fill no matter what don’t make up an excuse about the number of pills and inconvenience this man. He wound up going back to the doctor, changing his Rx, wasting time and money,trying to comply with what he was told the pharmacy wanted, etc. All that was unnecessary. It is called basic common decency, just stop the lying BS excuses already.

          -Pharmacist’s Manual-
          An Informational Outline of the
          Controlled Substances Act

          *For the complete manual, see link below: this is the section on corresponding responsibility (in its entirety). Hopefully this will help clear the air a bit.

          A pharmacist also needs to know there is a corresponding responsibility for the pharmacist who fills
          the prescription. An order purporting to be a prescription issued not in the usual course of
          professional treatment or in legitimate and authorized research is an invalid prescription within the
          meaning and intent of the CSA (21 U.S.C. § 829). The person knowingly filling such a purported
          prescription, as well as the person issuing it, shall be subject to the penalties provided for violations
          of the provisions of law relating to controlled substances.
          A pharmacist is required to exercise sound professional judgment when making a determination
          about the legitimacy of a controlled substance prescription. Such a determination is made before
          the prescription is dispensed. The law does not require a pharmacist to dispense a prescription of
          doubtful, questionable, or suspicious origin. To the contrary, the pharmacist who deliberately
          ignores a questionable prescription when there is reason to
          believe it was not issued for a
          legitimate medical purpose may be prosecuted along with the issuing practitioner, for knowingly
          and intentionally distributing controlled substances. Such action is a felony offense, which may
          result in the loss of one’s business or professional license (see United States v. Kershman, 555
          F.2d 198 [United States Court Of Appeals, Eighth Circuit, 1977]).

          • I agree with your interpretation of the Title 21 regulations and believe that the pharmacist does have the corresponding reponsibility to confirm the prescription is for a legitimate medical purpose. However, this does not state that a pharmacist can refuse any prescription for any reason as many pharmacist’s have stated.

          • I agree that Title 21 and Florida law (chapter 465, The Pharmacy Manual) do require a pharmacist to determine that a prescription is properly written, contains the proper information, and is for a legitimate medical purpose. My probem with this issue is that the majority of pharmacists have the attitude that they can refuse a prescription for any reason. Title 21 1306.04 clearly gives only 1 reason for a pharmacist to refuse a physician’s purported prescription, when the prescription is not in the usual course of professional treatment, or legitimate and authorized research. At the time a conclusion is reached that the prescription does not fufill the usual course of professional treatment or legitimate and authorized research it is not considered to be a legitimate prescription. Therefore, once the order becomes a non-legitimate prescription it also becomes an illegal order under Florida law. When this happens it is a 1rst degree misdemeanor (FS 465.015(3)) for a pharmacist to not report the incident to the local sheriff within 24 hours. A pharmacist in Florida does not have a choice to report or not, once he/she determines not to fill a prescription they have concluded that the prescription is not legitimate at that point it becomes a legal requirement to report the incident. I welcome the opportunity to discuss my situation with the sheriff or D.E.A . since I have a 25 year history with my injuries and numerous medical exams and MRIs, Cscans, PET scans, interventional procedures, and full disability rating for over 10 years. After I discuss the situation with the sheriff and/or D.E.A. the next discussion I have will be with my attorney to prepare my lawsuit. Every legitimate chronic pain sufferer should be aware of this Florida law and be willing to take a stand. Make the pharmacist obey the law and report all refusal to fill incidents. If the pharmacist refuses to report the incident he/she are clearly violating the florida law (FS 465.015(3)) and can be imprisoned and fined. If he/she reports you then get a copy of the report and see an attorney if you can prove that your prescription is for a legitimate medical purpose then you may have grounds for a lawsuit. Do not let the bad pharmacists that are not filling any controlled prescriptions at all get away with this. I am not bashing the good pharmacists who do their job correctly and fill all legitimate prescriptions. I just feel the pharmacists that are refusing to even verify these prescriptions are wrong and should be held accountable.

            • If this is true then can,you tell us whybhas there been no lawsuits and more and more continue to do this for ovwe 2 years now??? When i lost my government job because of this stuff i contacted SEVERAL LAWYERS over the last 2 years. All said there,is no case

        • You stated it perfectly. This pharmacist is doing what’s best for herself, not the patient.

        • The pharmacist is doing what’s best for herself and her career, not the patient. That’s what you said. Do you see a problem with that?

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