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The Red Prescription Bottle
September 8, 2013 - Joselyn King
A recent stop at the pharmacy to pick up blood pressure medicine was enough to make me see red.
"This prescription is expired," the pharmacist tried to tell me.
But I would believe none of it. It was just renewed last month, and had five refills.
"It must have been some other prescription they renewed," he again tried to convince me.
No, if it weren't renewed last month, it wouldn't have five refills -- that's what my doctor prescribes.
I know how it works -- I've been taking these pills since the day after the November 2000 presidential election amid questions about hanging chads and rather George W. Bush really was elected president. I had gone to the doctor that day to get treatment for a very bad cold.
"You really need to sit down and rest a second," the nurse told me then. "I'll take your blood pressure again."
Now nearly 13 years later, why am I arguing with the pharmacist over what appears to be an incorrect date on the prescription label? Does it have to be that difficult?
To paraphrase one of my favorite M*A*S*H lines, "Having words with a writer is like needling a nurse."
It seems a vicious cycle -- lets anger the patient so they continue to need blood pressure medication. Lets make them sicker so they continually need to depend on health care.
And I also wonder ... (does anyone else?) whether the health care system takes unfair advantage of the specific needs of women -- preying on their fears and physical vulnerabilities? It seems they are directed to more surgeries and testing than men are.
And does anyone question whether they really need that surgery or test?
As more and more medical offices spring up around us -- and Obamacare on the horizon -- should we be more vigilant about what care is being prescribed for us?
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