“JP’s 20 Rules For The Pharmacist” Jim’s Classic on Soul-Crushing Working Conditions

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“JP’s 20 Simple Rules for the Pharmacist” Copyright 2006.  Buy From Jim – $9.99 Including Shipping.

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  1. Pharmaciststeve  •  Oct 18, 2012 @5:55 pm

    Threats & intimidation is a two-way street.. IMO..by and large our so-called profession is crammed with ball-less, spineless, passive pleasers.

    I doubt if > 10% would sign a union card to form a union.. and if by some miracle enough signed a card to form a union the remainder would only join if their was no choice…

    I doubt if they would vote for a strike.. and if a vote strike was approved.. I am not sure that all would honor the picket line..

    they would be concerned about “their pts”.. many of the same pts that would complain to management if all their WANTS were not met…

    The same pts who will keep coming to the same store.. no matter how many different RPH’s come and go… because they could care less about who is “behind the counter”

    The vast majority of those RPH’s out there can’t/won’t be helped because they refuse to take even the smallest step to help themselves.

    The “Lone Ranger” is not going to come and rescue you !

  2. PharmD Blogger  •  Oct 18, 2012 @10:14 pm

    I will definitely do this. Thanks Jim for looking out for us naive pharmacists. I will give it to all my interns, too.

  3. Peon  •  Oct 19, 2012 @7:28 am

    Steve…a very good summation on pharmacists! This is why we do not have a strong professional organisation today. It is why the insurance companies and the chains rule pharmacy. It is why these big corporations are cramming down our throats all these crazy, stupid metrics. It is why chains like CVS can threaten pharmacists about their jobs. In this sense, pharmacists are getting what they ‘deserve’. You get what you tolerate and as long as we tolerate the crap, then that is just how long we will have to endure it. In this world, if you do not stand up for yourself, then someone will ‘run over’ you.
    I have thought a lot about how, collectively, we pharmacists can push back against the crap coming from these chains. And, I think it comes down to something you said about “threats & intimidation is a two-way street”. I don’t think the majority of chain pharmacists realise this. They never dream of threatening and intimidating their chain. I have actually sent numerous emails to my corporation with ‘veiled’ threats. When you first read those emails, they sound like I am concerned about the company, but if you read them closely, they are putting responsibility on the company if something goes wrong in the pharmacy. There are ways to word emails to corporations. Maybe this would be a good topic of discussion here. The most ‘concerned’, ‘helpful’, ‘caring’ email can be loaded with stuff that is putting the chain on notice that if something goes wrong they have been warned about the problem, and if they don’t fix it, then they will be the ones in trouble. The pharmacist does not have to ‘attack’ the company. He does not have to openly threaten the company.

  4. pharmaciststeve  •  Oct 19, 2012 @1:44 pm

    @peon.. I think that this author put it best
    All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten


    We are dealing with “school yard bullies”.. it won’t be long before that they start taking our “lunch money” (paycheck)… you can’t kick them in the balls… to get their attention and get them to leave you alone…

    The only thing that is important to these bullies is MONEY… there are laws… that will assist us to take some of that MONEY away from them.

    the more people that go after their money… the more likely they will change their tactics in the future.

    What is ironic is that during my 20 years as a indy pharmacy owner.. I never had to sue anyone… since I sold my business in 1996.. I have had to sue some major public companies… they harmed me or property that I own and they basically told me to shut up and go away… Once I got an attorney.. they changed their tune and signed a check…

    I just recently settled a lawsuit with a city over eminent domain – YES I SUED THE CITY — the outcome.. I got an additional amount equal to TEN TIMES what the legal fees were.

    when this first started in 2008.. it was take what we offer and shut up.. we don’t negotiate… maybe they didn’t negotiate.. but they did end up mediating.. and signing a much larger check than they initially wanted.

    There are attorney firms that probably more than happy to take on these “deep pocket” pharmacy corporations on contingency as a class action… but.. they need documentation and a few to stiffen their spines and stand upright (instead of bent over)..

    IMO.. it is not going to get any better… and all of you RPH’s in your late 30′s or early 40′s… the clock is ticking on your career… once you hit 50.. you will also be considered “dead wood”… PharmD not withstanding.

    All you of you RPH’s 63.5 + y/o.. you can COBRA to Medicare… the profession has been good to you.. Are you going to continue to work under the philosophy “I got mine.. you are on your own”.. In a few years… these younger RPH’s will be the ones filling YOUR RXS.. in your senior years… or maybe that 20 something that was just drug in off the street.. given 15 minutes of training and labeled a “pharmacy technician”.. filling your Rxs..

    all of our health’s are at risk.. does anyone really care… we know that corporate management doesn’t care.. we know that the BOP’s don’t care… we know that generally the media doesn’t care… unless we kill people with a contaminated compounded injectable.. or there is fraud involving billing and millions involved..

  5. McPharmacist  •  Oct 19, 2012 @11:46 pm


    They are already targeting our lunch money…metrics not withstanding…I would go into details as we were told it is company wide (is it really?) but I would like to see others input as well

  6. MSDEMEANOR  •  Nov 7, 2012 @10:54 am

    The only time a union was plausible was when there was a pharmacist shortage. Only then was their hope for a reform.Instead pharmacists took the sign on bonuses and paid tuition. The chains then fought to loosen immigration restrictions and bankrolled new pharmacy schools while the so called pharmacy associations kept accepting the chains
    donations in return to keeping their mouths shut.
    We deserve what we have gotten.

  7. Peon  •  Nov 22, 2012 @11:49 am

    I have had some experiences with the FDA and I am no fan of them. They are TOO SLOW to act. Here is the latest news headline:
    “The U.S. Food and Drug Administration took 684 days to issue a warning letter after uncovering infractions that could potentially harm patients at the pharmacy at the center of the deadly U.S. meningitis outbreak, newly released documents show.”

    American people depending on the FDA to protect our drugs and food supply are woefully misinformed.

  8. Pharmacist Bob  •  Nov 29, 2012 @11:17 pm

    MSDE–Still not to late to change all of that!

  9. the truth  •  Nov 30, 2012 @11:05 am

    Msdemeanor, no one could have foreseen the future. I graduated when things were going great. I got those big sign on bonuses and worked tons of overtime b/c of the shortage and thought, ..you know I finally made it. Several years later, I am at the stage where I am seriously thinking of leaving the profession. It is too full of what I consider nonsense and nonpharmacists. By that I mean Indians on visas who don’t have US pharmacy degrees. And nonpharmacists who are in upper management who are always coming up with ideas that they think will boost rxs when all they really do is waste what little time we have. Sooner or later, retail will no longer be the giant. That spot is reserved for mail order which all of my customers have complained about for years. I think that might be my next job. At least I won’t have to give out shots during my 12 hour shift with no break, sell needles to 20 something yr olds who then shoot up in the parking lot (and our bathrooms) and answer the phone with one of many prewritten assinine greetings. I’d like to chastise the liberal morons who passed the sell needles to everyone law and opened up the floodgates to all these already wealthy visa applicants who took our jobs and job security away. Don’t just blame the chains. Someone who was voted into office let this happen.

  10. the truth  •  Dec 1, 2012 @6:37 pm

    On a side note, I have noticed a lack of posts from the other pharmacist blogs. I hope you guys are okay.

  11. Pharmacist Bob  •  Dec 2, 2012 @8:21 am

    Those that say it is too late to unionize, I say think again. If every pharmacist in a chain said we have had enough of your “Hal” like behavior towards our profession and unionized at a minimum we as a profession will have made a very strong statement towards these egregious companies. There are a number of actions that could be brought to bear down on these companies without striking. Just being vocal as a whole unit a team so to speak of pharmacists going against the big company team or teams would be an interesting game wouldn’t it? I think we could have fun at least, we might become an effective thorn. Could you picket without striking, could you slow down without striking, could you call in sick without striking, could you take your legally entitled brakes/lunches and go home on time without striking? And remember as a legally sanctioned union you have some very strong protective legal rights as a worker. You would be the union—a new union of pharmacists—hell we could own these companies if they keep going down the path they are on. Don’t you agree?

  12. Pharmacist Bob  •  Dec 2, 2012 @8:35 am

    At some point someone will need to do a full on body slam into their catcher to score!

  13. Peon  •  Dec 3, 2012 @2:28 pm

    Pharmacist Bob, I agree with you! Only difference I have with you, is that I would be willing to strike. I am so sick of the way pharmacy is today that I would join a union and I would strike.

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