Washington, DC

Female, 32

I've worked as a pharmacist in multiple settings, including retail (think Walgreens), a hospital, a nursing home, an outpatient clinic, and a regulatory agency. Over the past decade, I've counted more pills than Pfizer, Merck, and Lindsay Lohan combined. Ask me anything!

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34 Questions


Last Answer on December 30, 2012

Best Rated

Do pharmacies have us wait 15-20 min to fill prescriptions with the hope that we'll shop for other stuff while waiting?

Asked by cynicthehedgehog over 6 years ago

No, the wait to get a prescription filled is not a ploy to get you to shop in the store. Most retail chain store pharmacists could care less whether you buy anything in the store. If you can wait 45 minutes for a souffle, you should want to wait 20 minutes to make sure you don't get a medication that can potentially kill you.

Are there any prescription drugs that you think should be available over the counter? And vice versa - current OTC drugs that you think should be prescription only?

Asked by ryguy84 over 6 years ago

Great question! Unfortunately, I'm going to refrain from naming actual drug names to remain unbiased. I believe that the lack of drugs available OTC in the US compared to other countries is primarily because we're "sue-happy." When a drug is available OTC, the assumption is that the consumer is able to determine which OTC drug is appropriate for the symptoms or disease they have, how to monitor the treatment, and when to seek help from a healthcare professional. I'll let you be the judge of which drugs should be prescription and which should be OTC!

Why do so many pharmacists think nothing of just calling out the name of my medication loudly even there are a bunch of other customers there?

Asked by jayjaysmomma over 6 years ago

The person ringing you up could range from a store cashier, technician, intern, or pharmacist. Your name is private information, but many pharmacies have this practice. I've also seen pharmacies that post up your name on a lighted board when your prescription is ready for pick up. Either way, your name is exposed. If this really bothers you, consider asking the person taking in your prescription to call out a number (or create some other code or pseudonym) instead of your name.

Are ALL the people behind the counter "pharmacists" or are some of them just assistants or apprentices?

Asked by grant over 6 years ago

There are usually one or two pharmacists behind the counter. The rest are interns or technicians.

About the calling out the name of the medication thing, what if it's something really private -- like AZT to treat HIV...are you instructed to be more discreet about stuff like that?

Asked by Simon over 6 years ago

They should NEVER call out the name of the medication. And yes, they should be extremely discreet about HIV treatments.

Are you trained in emergency care or CPR? Have you ever had to use it on a customer in the pharmacy?

Asked by art over 6 years ago

I am currently certified in Basic Life Support (BLS) and was certified in Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS) in the past. I've never had to use it in the pharmacy, but I've been part of a team that responds to Code Blues.

While I'd imagine most people haven't experienced both, how difficult is pharmacy school vs. medical school?

Asked by McSteamboat about 6 years ago

Difficult? I guess it's subjective and I didn't go to medical school so it'll be an unfair assessment. I knew people in medical school who struggled with pharmacology. On the flip side, there are people in pharmacy school, myself included, who couldn't stomach the anatomy labs.