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Fuck Copays

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Copays are the bane of our existence.

There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t get into an argument or discussion with some retard about their copays.  Be it too high (even though they paid the SAME amount last month) to the infamous rocket-science-level deductible, its like we spend 99% of our time explaining something that should be common knowledge.

Why do people think that WE have anything to do with their copays? As if I pull a number out of my ass and slap it on the label for them to pay.  Are people really that fucking stupid? Oh, wait, dumb question.

What really pisses in my cornflakes is when someone is getting a $300 prescription, say #60 Aciphex, and has a $10 copay.  Then has the balls to sit there and openly complain to me that they should NOT have to pay that $10 and how much their insurance sucks.  Heres a typical conversation:

Them: WHAT! I have to pay $10! This can’t be right!
Me: Well, according to my system here you paid that last month.
Me: Uhm, close to $350 dollars
Them: $10 is way too high for this Rx! I want it lower
Me: Uh, I dont set your copays, you’ll have to call your insurance.

Now this is what I wish would happen:

Them: WHAT! I have to pay $10! This can’t be right!
Me: Listen here you fucking ungrateful moronic fuck.  You are getting $300 worth of medications for fucking $10.  /MY/ copays aren’t that low, and you have the fucking balls to sit here in front of me and my staff and whine over paying $10.  You are a fucking moron, and I am embarrassed to be in your presence.  Take your fucking prescription and go somewhere where they give a fuck, because I have better things to do than to sit here and listen to the diarrhea babble flow out of your mouth.  You are an ungrateful fuck and I hope you die in a car fire.  Eat shit you whore.

However business and that crazy ethics crap dictate that I can’t really fly off the handle at them while they are in the store (but I do tend to do it when nobody is in the store).  It really does however piss me off when people whine about copays that cost less than a good meal at McDonalds.  If your copay is $150 bucks, sure, bitch away.  $10 not so much.

Comments #

Comment by GC on 2008-03-03 18:57:00 -0800 #

haha i feel your pain TAP. just tonight we had a guy come in he recently got a Rx filled for 180 arthrotec with a 60 dollar copay. So 90 days for 60 bucks not bad id say considering the fucking price of the medicine. He starts saying shit about how he paid less last month. Lets see last month he paid $30 for a month supply. He failed to comprehend the fact that he is not getting 90 days for 60 bucks whereas before he would have only gotten 60 days for 60 bucks. He then continued to argue saying his insurance shouldnt fluctuate so much because he’s been using this insurance for ages. Really the only thing running through my mind is go fuck yourself asshole you are paying less stop whining!!

Comment by rph3664 on 2008-03-03 20:12:09 -0800 #

Like I have said elsewhere, the people who complain the most about the cost of their medicine probably have a million dollars stuffed in a mattress somewhere.

Comment by Pharmacy Hell on 2008-03-03 20:25:19 -0800 #

Yup, that’s why I hate the $50 coupon for transferred Rx’s. I spent forever on hold with mega-chain to get the transfer. When Joe Schmoe found out that his co-pay at my small pharmacy would be higher, he wanted it transferred back. The explanation that he was probably now in the MediCare doughnut hole or that it’s a new year and he had a deductible to be met was another waste of time.
Last week was my final foray into the week of retail pharmacy. I’m done with it.

Comment by BravoKilo on 2008-03-03 20:56:33 -0800 #

But didn’t you know, the ‘F’ in pharmacy stands for “free”..? Or at least that’s what those tards want you to think.
What’s even worse is those that demand you to fill for brand then bitch about the price.
“Why is my prescription for Coreg $300??”
“Because you’re the fuck-tard that demanded brand be dispensed, even after I mentioned it would be significantly more. Now you want me to waste my time and refill it for generic because your head was too far up your ass to hear what I said the first time.”

Comment by TheDruggist on 2008-03-03 22:03:18 -0800 #

I had a guy a while back huff-n-puff over a $45 copay………for like $3000 worth of friggin Zyvox! Hell, I’d pay at least $60 to get rid of MRSA….

Comment by AssBustingTech on 2008-03-03 22:17:21 -0800 #

“I CAN’T TAKE THE GENETIC”…I’m sorry what was that, you can’t take the “GENETIC” you say? hahah
“Ok so you need to fill your BRAND NAME SUBSCRIPTION” !!!!!!!!
This past weekend actually a guy first told me that it was “Fucking Rediculous” then proceeded to call me a “Fucking Asshole” (Lipitor,Prevacid and BRAND NAME VALIUM keep in mind) Really I have no problem politely but with a hint of attitude and oh yes of course sarcasm explaining. This is the price you pay without insurance and this what you pay with insurance. Feel better now? I dont make the price call your insurance. (ding..with a smile)
But don’t forget to ring up the Fritos,Cookies and Diet Coke!! aaarrrgghhh

Comment by PharmacySlave on 2008-03-03 22:18:42 -0800 #

Theres this one customer who ALWAYS wants brand… he even called his insurance company and they told him that brand is covered for $10.00 copay… took me about 15mins of holding on the phone to find out the insurance ONLY COVERS brand for $10 when theres NO GENERIC. (otherwise its 80% of awp)
But luckily I’m really privileged to work at in a fairly low volume chain in a rich area where there aren’t many whiners ;]
(love the blog & I just found out i can comment anonymously)

Comment by Steph on 2008-03-03 22:35:09 -0800 #

Ohhhh Good Lord Jayzus you MAKE ME LAUGH SO HARD! Yes, I wish I could say those things. We all wish we could say those things. You know, when the other pharmacists drop what they’re doing and can’t help but stare as another one of us deals with this crap, we’re all thinking the same thing. Oh, but your alter-conversation is priceless. One of these days, I’m seriously going to say, “It’s ten dollars…beCAUSE…I made it up. Pulled a number at random, and yours came up ten. Ten dollars. Take it or leave it.” WoO!

Comment by Pharmtastic on 2008-03-03 22:56:27 -0800 #

I’ve been interning in retail pharmacy for only 1 year and I totally feel your pain. Every time, I have a pick up that has a high copay (esp $100s because of deductible), my blood pressure shoots up and my heart palpitates. If only time allows, I will prepare a speech before the damn customer comes every single time. All of my classmates are talking about how hard/horrible it is to talking about how hard/horrible it is to talk in front of a group of health care professionals. Fuck that, that’s NOTHING compared to explaining to a grumpy 60 yo stupid looking bitch yelling at me, while yapping on her cell phone, because she has a fucking deductible for a plan she signed up for w/o reading any damn word because she’s fucking retarded.

Comment by the little tech that does….. on 2008-03-03 23:47:12 -0800 #

I had a lady (I use the term loosely) get mad one day because she said she never paid copays. I explained to her that I don’t set the price, the insurance does, but she was having none of that. She said she would pay, but that we (my pharmacy) would be giving refunding the money to her because we obviously made a mistake. I told her to call her insurance and let me know what they said and I haven’t heard from her since. Go figure.

Comment by Smelly on 2008-03-04 05:22:42 -0800 #

I used to have a woman complain about how expensive and ridiculous her copays were. She was about 30ish with a few kids. Her co-pays were on the higher side $20-35. But after her I’d ring up some poor 70 year old lady spending $200 of her retirement money every month for her Lipitor. I always wanted to smack the younger lady.

Comment by on 2008-03-04 05:58:04 -0800 #

Some of my favorites include:
me: “Your copay is $25.”
customer: “That’s not right!”
me: “That is the price caremark advised me to charge you. What do you think it should be?”
customer: “I dunno.”
customer: “Can you tell me the price for my brand NORVASC (pronounced nor-va-sick)?”
me: “You have an $8 copay.”
customer: “Oh that can’t possibly be right! I’m supposed to have brand. The copay is $60.”
me: (thought: if you know the price, then why do you ask me?) “Madam, if you want to pay $60 for Norvasc, I suggest you contact Anthem and let them know. I’m sure they can work something out.”
customer: “ARE YOU CRAZY?”
(pointless conversation continues to be dragged out for 5 minutes.)
I seriously think customers believe me to have something like a “caremark book” or a “medco book” and when they bring in their prescriptions I open it up and look up the plan’s copay/coinsurance structure.
Oh, and does anyone on here know how to get Anthem Medicare HMO to pay for albuterol solution? I keep getting a “bill to Medicare Part B” reject message, and the good folks in Anthem-India tell me that I’m submitting the claim to part D when I send it to them.
Victory Chant for Pharmacy: “CONTACT YOUR BENEFITS OFFICE!”

Comment by former pharmacy tech gone postal on 2008-03-04 06:17:47 -0800 #

My favorite was the old bat that pitched a fit over the 10 cent increase in her co-pay. I embarrassed her by telling her if she didn’t have 10 cents I would loan it to her. The person in line behind her compounded the embarrassment by also offering to pay it for her. We definitely pissed in her cornflakes that day.Thanks for all the reminders of why I left Pharmacy. I now have a much better paying job, a fraction of the stress level and enough authority to really ruin someones day if they treat me even remotely like they did while I was in the pharmacy. A little power goes a long way.

Comment by Gail on 2008-03-04 07:53:41 -0800 #

I always feel like I should write a thank you note to my insurance company when I fill one particular prescription. It saves me about 300 dollars a month. I don’t even pay that much for my insurance in a month. (Thank you huge Swedish Conglomerate that owns my company.)

Comment by WalgreensSuppaTech on 2008-03-04 10:19:41 -0800 #

I love how rich people will bitch and bitch over a ten buck copay, but then some poor schmuck with no insurance will pay $100 for something and not say a word.
I also love how the beginning of the year is like a mind-wipe for people. They forget all about the horrible thing called a deductible every year and always need constant reminding.
Then there’s the fucktards who never have their insurance card because “it’s the same” except now it’s through United Health Care, when previously it was through Missouri Blue Cross.
And last but not least, the shit faces who want to call you up and demand you tell them how much their NEW meds will be on their insurance. I once had a guy argue with me because I said I couldn’t tell him til we got that new script and attempted to run it through his NEW insurance card (which we didn’t have and I refused to take over the phone). He ended with, well maybe I’ll take my business elsewhere. His script was for some E.D. med anyway. Good luck getting that covered, fucktard!

Comment by Sarah on 2008-03-04 12:26:30 -0800 #

If my copay is $10, that is great. The thing is, that $10 seems like a lot more if I have therapy four times a week (all with a copay) and five or six other prescriptions I also fill per month (all with a copay) not to mention any copays we may have to cover family members. I tend to bitch the most about copays when I am being bled dry by them. Families who are healthy, ya, the random ten to forty bucks isn

Comment by Ash (walgreens intern) on 2008-03-04 14:09:09 -0800 #

people like that bother the hell out of me. especially when its not for them its for a sick family member. i watched my mother shell out $3900 in copays alone the last six months of my fathers life and she never once said anything other than “I’d hate to see the price without the insurance.”

Comment by IAPhrmr on 2008-03-04 17:36:25 -0800 #

Not someone bitching about copays, but someone trying to beat the system and end up screwing themselves.
Pt comes in has medicare part D. The have the “Best” plan available. They get generics for $0 and brand for $25 etc. It costs about $60 a month for her premium
Pt gets 6 prescriptions. 5 of them fall on the lovely $4 drugs, and the other is about $35 per month. Now the patient has absolutely no brand names no extras. Apparently last year she was on all brand names (lipitor, cozaar, Toprol XL, and something else) and they ended up $60 premium, on top of all of their meds for cash. The insurance is not picking up ANYTHING. ON top of that on her HCTZ the insurance only charges about $5.60 for a 3 month supply, and they still do not want it through her insurance! All because they do not want to go into the donut hole. I tried to explain that they will not run into the donut hole being on these generics.
Oh well, I will take the extra money!

Comment by The Ole’ Apothecary on 2008-03-04 22:39:56 -0800 #

“I think I’ll go piss on the fish.”
—Michael Douglas, playing the disgruntled husband, at his wife’s catering service, in “The War Of The Roses”

Comment by The Ole’ Apothecary on 2008-03-04 22:47:27 -0800 #

Back at that first job of mine, in 1981, the state in which I was working instituted its first-ever Medicaid co-pay—FIFTY CENTS. Ah, what an obstacle that was! Oh, how they argued over that half a buck, a lousy half a buck. For so many of them, It became the burden of a lifetime. Those fifty cents stood as such a vivid illustration of the entitlement mentality. I am sure that it wasn’t the money that was the problem, it was the reduction in entitlements it represented. It represented responsibility, and that is a currency they refused to spend. From the blog posts I read now, that mentality has widened and deepened over the years.

Comment by RX 123 on 2008-03-04 23:12:47 -0800 #

This is a conversation I had the beginning of the year.
Me: Your total is $1.05
Crazy Bitch: What I pay $1.00 for my prescriptions
Me: Well the insurance is probably charging you a bit higher copays this year. It is the beginning of the year, you may have signed up for a different plan this year.
Crazy Bitch: NO thats wrong, YOU are wrong, I only pay $1.00
Me: Look it is $1.05 now you can either take it or leave it, I have other things to deal with, if you have a problem with your copay then call the Anthem, The customer service number is on the back of your card, they will reimburse you the nickel that you are being over charged.
Crazy Bitch: Can you call…
Me: NO I’m walking away now.
This women come in all the time with the same type of problem, her meds are too early, her copay is a penny more than it should be, blah blah blah… And for some reason I’m always the poor unlucky bastard that has to deal with her every time. I seriously do not get paid enough to deal with crazy penny pushers like her.

Comment by Kitty!! on 2008-03-05 00:45:15 -0800 #

This goes off the subject of copays…
I had a guy come up to me today and ask:
“Is my Rx ready yet?”
I ask:
“What is your name?”
He says:
I ask:
“….and your last name?”
He says:
“Doe” (for privacy reasons…)
I say:
“Oh, yes it is. Thanks for waiting.”
He whines:
“Dont you guys call out names when our Rx’s are ready?”
I answer:
“Yes we do, when the pharmacist brings it out.”
He whines further:
“Well I didnt hear my name called.”
I say:
“Oh, I’m sorry about that sir.”
I continue in my head:
“Well maybe you would’ve heard your damn name called if you weren’t wearing those freakin’ earphones you godforsaken MORON!!!”
I continue out loud:
“May I verify which doctor it’s from?”
He says:
“What? I cant hear you”
Sorry TAP, but I just had to get this out of my system. It’s amazing how people (fully grown adults twice my age) can be such fucktards.
As for copays, I’ve had people yell and call for managers because their copay was $1.05 and not $0.00. OF COURSE they were on welfare. Oh did I mention the 30 pack case of Bud Light (16.99) they wanted to check out at the same time?
I wish I could knock some sense into them >.>

Comment by on 2008-03-05 12:12:21 -0800 #

Just recently started reading your blog as it was sent my way from another angry RPh. Thanks for the laughs!

Comment by drh on 2008-03-08 11:37:27 -0800 #

Get this. A doc I know works in a rural ER. This woman brings her 17-year-old daughter in at 3:30am, paid for by us taxpayers, for abdominal pain. She was in 3 days before and had a mega workup including ultrasound and was diagnosed with a bladder infection and given a script for Septra. Then took the kid to a big hospital ER 90 miles away 2 days before and got another mega workup and was sent out with Cipro for a UTI.
NEVER FILLED either prescription. Comes in yelling at him because she wants to find out what’s wrong with the girl. He tells her that’s pretty easy because it’s already been worked up twice and tells her she needs to fill the prescription and how dangerous it is not to.
She (and the daughter demon spawn) proceed to yell and scream at him that he’s “not doing his job” because he should just give them a bottle of pills because they don’t have the $1 copay (as the mother is sitting there drinking a 20 oz. pop and has a pack of cigarettes in her purse and had the gas money to drive the kid to the big city ER 2 days before). Good for him, he gave her one dose of Septra then and there to get her through the night and told her to look under her couch cushions to find the dollar in change and that it was child abuse if she didn’t and he’d report her.
So, this kid had two mega workups at taxpayer expense all because her lazy ass mother wouldn’t pay one fricking dollar to get her Septra filled. This cost us thousands of dollars. I used to be a liberal, but now after seeing this shit over and over I think we should charge these dumbass people for medical care when they do this shit, even if we have to deduct it from their welfare checks for the rest of their lives.

Comment by ~April on 2008-03-08 14:11:30 -0800 #

I think I love you.

Comment by NakedUnderMySmock on 2008-03-13 16:56:46 -0700 #

Unfortunately under my company’s policy and procedures (yes, I work for a chain, boo-hoo) I can’t call my customers “fucking retards”. As a result I have to apologize for my incompetence to reduce their copay to their liking while they rant for 1/2 hour about the existentialism of outrageous deductibles. Pity. May I strip to my skivvies now?

Comment by Jen Dank on 2012-01-10 01:34:53 -0800 #

Omg! You are too funny… Serious BUT still Funny! I wish I lived in Cali because I would definatly go to your pharmacy when if I must pay $10 co-pays!!!!

I can’t find any recent posts, are you still around?

Comment by jen on 2017-11-13 21:04:44 -0800 #

Pharmacists are professionals who don’t use such language. So u must not really be 1.