I’d like to extend a heart-felt and giant “fuck you” to the entire health care system for treating us all like children.
It starts with that whole idea of the waiting room. “You just sit there and be quiet, and we will get to you when we get to you…”
Then come the indignities of the backless gowns, the paper shoes, and the always being at the mercy of whatever “practitioner” feels like sticking you in soft places with a sharp stick…
I know other people have much worse examples. My latest was a small one — just picking up a prescription. It’s the small shit that can take all the joy out of life. This was just a teeny, tiny pill smaller than a baby aspirin.
It has few side effects, non-additictive, but it keeps my blood pressure from blowing off the top of my brain. Those were not the doctor’s exact words, but when someone says “high blood pressure” I can only imagine a firehose going off in my head.
It’s hot as fuck in June/July/August/September in southern Arizona, so I was planning vacations. Called the pharmacy before I left to get my little BP pill and make sure I had enough.
The Drug Robot
“I’m sorry, it’s too early to refill this prescription” — the robot voice said in that annoying automated tone that manages to sound like your 3rd grade teacher telling you to sit up straight.
Fuck. How can it be “too early.” Why are they hiding this shit from me?
So the robot called me while I was out of town. Ignore. I don’t pick up unless caller ID shows me a person’s name — fucking 4 robo calls a day.
Then Walgreens texts while I’m out of town. “Would you like to renew now.”
“Yes,” I text back.
Cool, finally an easy and simple way… I get to control the process for one fucking time in the history of American health care. I was excited to walk right in and get my meds right on time. Yeah technology!
Had to buy more Advil and cloth tape for the bad knees and blisters that come from playing tennis at the Third World Club so I actually walk in the store.
Get in the Imaginary Line
Standing in line at the counter, all the pharm techs have their back to me. One is handling the drive through — ignoring me.
She finally turns.
“Have you been helped?”
“Well if you stand at the start of the line we can see you better…”
“I am standing at the front of the line.”
“I mean, by the sign,” she said. Pointing to the little pole behind me.
The sign does not say line starts here — it just says “express line” (whatever the fuck that is — people about to die without their meds?) on one side, regular on the other…
Thanks for blaming me because you didn’t see the dude the size of a black bear standing at your counter. Maybe if you didn’t stand on a fucking platform 2 feet above our heads so you can be all superior to your customers you would have seen my fat ass, you blind, blamey, piece of shit… but I digress.
She takes my name and looks up my prescription.
“I don’t see it what’s it for?”
“The BP med.”
“Ohh, we put it back. You didn’t come in for 10 days.”
“I was out of town, That’s why I wanted to pick it up early, but it didn’t let me pick it up early, and this was the soonest I could get here…”
“You will have to come back later today,” she said. “It will be ready after 4 p.m.”
Not an apology, not a slight embarrased smile… Just more directions from some douchebag millennial on what I have to do in order to fit “the system.”
I Wish I Said
I grunted. I had no words I could say in public. But if my balls were not shriveled down to freeze dried peanuts by the “polite” rules of society — this is what I should have said:
Jesus Fucking Christ. I’m not getting an opiod. The god damn Advil in my hand is more “dangerous” than the shit you are withholding from me.
What the fuck is the purpose behind these rules about early refills and 10-days on the shelf…
There isn’t a god damn medical reason for any of this shit. This is just about power and control. You and Walgreens and the whole medical system have the power to tell us what to do and when, and you fucking like using it.
But this isn’t about this one little douchebag millennial. Every word health care providers use seems designed to patronize us.
“You need a new prescription for every refill.” Who’s fucking prescription is this? If it’s mine, I should get to decide whether to continue – you don’t own me.
“Are you compliant with your medication”? Hey, fuck you I will put in my body what I want to put in my body and when.
“Do you follow Doctor’s orders”? You work for me mother-fucker. I’m paying you a lot of money for your best advice — fuck you with the orders — they are suggestions.
And that goes for the rest of the health care system too… I might have to hold my breath and scream “Fuck You” in a crowded clinic until you start treating us like adults…
Yeah, maybe if I didn’t act like a two-year-old with these rants, I would get treated better? Maybe in other parts of life — but never by the health care system.
All they know how to do is patronize the people paying the bills.