Pharmacist on hunger strike against prescription giant Medco
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09/17/10 Kate Bradshaw
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Raj Bhat on day 76 of his hunger strike.


photo by Kate Bradshaw, WMNF

Around half of all Americans are on prescription drugs. Many insurance companies now make patients get them filled by mail instead of the pharmacy down the street. Mail-order drug giant Medco fills more than one million of these each week. Such high demand may be putting potentially hazardous pressure on the pharmacists who process prescription orders. One former employee of Medco’s Tampa facility is staging the ultimate protest to expose what he’s calling unethical practice.

Rajendra Bhat and his family live in a manicured suburban neighborhood on the outskirts of Tampa – three car garages, crew-cut lawns, the whole bit…Not exactly the kind of setting one would associate with impassioned protest. Bhat hasn’t left the house in weeks, save for once to get a hair cut. Bhat is about to round out his eleventh week without food.

Bhat says it’s invigorating to talk about his cause. A pharmacist trained at the University of Bangalore, he came to the US in 1984. In 1995, he started working for New Jersey-based pharmaceutical giant Medco. A far cry from a neighborhood drugstore, the company employs pharmacists in Tampa, among other places, to decode doctor-scribbled drug prescriptions sent by patients. Medco spokesperson Ann Smith says the actual pill bottles – millions of them – get filled at facilities hundreds of miles away.

Shortly after the company became publicly traded in 2003, Bhat says there was a marked difference in the company’s demands on its pharmacists.

Bhat says the company enforces hourly quotas on pharmacists that leave little room for careful scrutiny of doctor handwriting, and reprimands those who call for clarification.

He says this leaves room for potentially deadly errors.

He even got the State Board of Pharmacy to investigate, but to no avail. In 2005, just days after the board closed its investigation, Medco fired Bhat. He says it was a retaliatory measure, but Medco said it was due to poor performance. Medco spokesperson Ann Smith says the company has never imposed quotas on its pharmacists.

Fred Redmond is International Vice President of United Steelworkers, the union that has represented Medco pharmacists since 2007. He says there are concerns at a New Jersey facility, but he doesn’t know of any complaints from the Tampa facility.

Bhat maintains that they do, and brought suit under the Florida Whistleblower act earlier this year. Randall Reder, Bhat’s attorney, says the judge appeared ready to deny Medco summary judgment of the case, which meant he saw room for dispute.

Reder says the judge seemed to abruptly reverse his stance.

The case is on appeal, and Reder is representing Bhat on contingency.

Bhat says he worries that the unethical practices he alleges may become systemic if left unchecked.

Bhat has eaten nothing and has had only water to drink since July Fifth. While he waits to see if the appeal gets taken up, he says his other hope is that the Senate Finance committee looks into the case.

WMNF contacted the state Department of Health, under which the Board of Pharmacy operates, regarding the investigation. Here is what DOH spokesperson Eulinda Smith said:

"[Medco] has multiple licenses and there are no public complaints according to our records. There are multiple licensees for Medco. There are only two complaints that come up under any Medco listing, which are Medco Pharmacy from 1981 and 1991."

Raj Bhat's hunger strike blog

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Comments

Good story!

Great story on a huge phenomenon that has not been uncovered much! Good interview of the pharmacist--what an expose. Why has this story taken 11 weeks to get out? The man could have expired or been in the hospital. Keep up your calling of covering stories of whistleblowers and how they are treated. Thanks, Kate and the News crew.

Terriffic Story!

yeah why has this taken 11 weeks to get uncovered and get out? its a damn conspiracy by Bush and his administration probably and just another attempt to poison the atmosphere for the people and bring us down or something WHY do we tolerate the dangerous

Appendum

I forgot to say that because of the privious administartion there is nowhere where we can go to get medicine now.this should be uncovered more. thank you.

Quota

I'm an active Medco RPh. Quota system is true. Medco Pharmacists are pressured to check about 100 prescriptions per hour. We get reprimanded if we do not finish the quota. Ruthless company!

Saddened Family Member

I am sad that it took 76 days of fasting by Raj to get attention from the mainstream media. What does it take for all the pharmacists, doctors and responsible government representatives (& his labor Union) to take note of this and join his struggle to put consumers and their safety ahead of (insane) profits by corporations. We are hoping Raj will then stop his hunger strike...before it is too late!! He has a wife & two kids who depend on him AND Medco knows it!! I am thankful that WMNF picked up on this story. THANK YOU KATE BRADSHAW.

Concerned ex-faculty of school of pharmacy

I am surprised that it took more than 75 days of protest( by hunger strike) by the pharmacist for the local community of Tampa and media to notice. When the pharmacy schools graduate pharmacists they are made to take an oath to ensure to check all the prescriptions for errors and if suspected, alert and check with the doctors before dispensing medication. If that privilege and obligation is taken away from the pharmacists, by measuring the efficiency and performance by the number of prescriptions filled per hour, undoubtedly the error rate will increase, placing the patients at risk of adverse reactions. This should not be tolerated by any health care groups or individuals. Why is the national media, the schools of pharmacies, State Boards of Pharmacies, Federal HHS, and US congress not doing anything to put a stop to this unethical, unjust and harmful practice? Does the person has to sacrifice his life before the matter is taken up by the media and others? I sincerely hope that concerned entities and regulatory bodies will come forward and assure the protesting pharmacist that his cause will be taken up and his protest will spread throughout the nation to stop the quota system. I would like to hear NPR, CNN and other national networks pick up this story and broadcast nationwide.

Pathetic

A hunger strike over this? I'm a pharmacist. I've been in situations where I've felt pressured. You know what I did? I quit! Oh, and BTW, good pharmacists can easily handle 60 Rx's per hour. Good pharmacists, undisturbed, can easily check 120 refills or 60 new Rx's per hour. I worked at a pharmacy where two of us checked 400 Rx's a day, and intereacted with the public, medical professionals, etc. This guy is pathetic.

Public health and safety issue

Any pharmacist with a macho cavalier attitude brags that he can completely and accurately check a prescription entered by a technician following Medco's own Standard operation Procedure (SOP),in less than 25 seconds per prescription, is either talking as a Medco spokesperson or is not interested in safeguarding patient health and safety. These 25 seconds do not discriminate between fatal and non-fatal medication errors. It is very unfortunate that there are some pharmacists who volunteer to participate in these wrongful Medco practices, or approve of these practices with a facade of bravado. I would like to bring Adam's attention to the fact that 130-150 prescriptions a pharmacist is required to check per hour at Medco are all new prescriptions and no refills at all. It is up to the readers to make an informed common sense judgment as to whether any pharmacist can honestly and truthfully exercise his/her pharmacist’s professional judgment and check a new prescription in less than 25 seconds.

Pears and Pills not the same thing

If I was working at a grocery store or a pizza place and did not like the way my employer ran his business, I would have quit, like Pharmacist Adam has suggested. There would have been no moral dilemma. If a customer gets a bad or a wrong product, he/she can identify that product defect for himself/herself and return the product for a refund without any harm caused to any one. Because this is a public health and safety issue, it is a matter of conscience to me. I can not turn a blind eye, walk away and betray the trust of millions of unsuspecting innocent Medco patients all over US who may not even know looking at the pills that they have received wrong medications attributed to these unsafe Medco Practices.If quitting Medco is the answer for Medco Pharmacists who do not like these practices, that would make it all the more easier for Medco to push the envelope and continue these practices unchecked at the expense of patient health and safety. I can not walk away without bringing this to the attention of public to whom I am ultimately accountable as pronounced by Pharmacists Code of ethics. Innocent patients trust the pharmacists and the system to have taken every right measure to do the right thing in their interest. The lives of these innocent patients and their loved ones (who I personally do not know) are equally important in comparison to my life, lives of my wife, kids, all my family members and friends (who I personally know) all over the world. I can not quit without holding Medco, Regulators and Union other Institutions in power and authority accountable.

Why does Medco deny Quota system when Medco Pharma

I thank WMNF and Ms .Kate Bradshaw for giving me an opportunity to bring this to the attention of public. I am also thankful to this comments forum, to enable me to present the facts and figures in proper perspective for a healthy debate. This should in turn enable the readers to make informed judgment about this issue. I have worked in both mail order pharmacy setting (Medco) as well as high volume Retail Pharmacy setting. The retail pharmacy setting I have worked for were similar to the high volume ones pharmacist Adam has referred to, in his comment. Typically on any given day, more than 50% of the prescriptions in retail are refills and do not require much scrutiny and time. For all new prescriptions, you spend enough time as necessary to ensure every aspect of prescription entry is correct and thereby maintain high quality. One can simultaneously interact with the patients, medical professionals, counsel patients and other activities pharmacist Adam has referred to and also maintain high level of customer service. By judicious use of time and resources, you can achieve good productivity and maintain high quality, which I have achieved during my services with these employers. With the high volume retail employers I have worked, they have never pressured me with increasing check rates per hour or interfered with my professional judgment calls in the interest of patient health and safety. Unfortunately at Medco, it is different. The current Medco Rph who has put his comment under title "Quota" in this column refers to Medco as ruthless company. He clearly states that Quota system is true and that they get reprimanded if they do not finish the quota. Medco still has the audacity to keep insisting that they do not have a quota system. That is the kind of unscrupulous callous Corporate Citizenry Medco exhibits. Not surprising... It is also true that Medco penalizes and disciplines pharmacists for seeking doctor call clarifications of unclear scribbled prescriptions, because this costs Medco money and reduces its profits. Medco is raking up these profits at the expense of health and safety of unsuspecting innocent patients. I am highly thankful to all my family members and supporters for their support in this challenging ordeal. I urge the readers of this column to visit my website"ihungerstrike.blogspot.com"for more facts & info, and participate in a healthy debate like the one we are having on this website to hold Medco accountable. As this affects Medco patients all over the US, I urge the readers to spread my message around, get in touch with their respective local press outlets & National press and demand them to cover this story. Time is of the essence.

Why the Society & Media Apathy?

I am absolutely appalled that this story is not getting the mileage it deserves. Raj Bhat's moral courage is nothing short of being miraculous. He is fighting for the good of the patients and his strength is his conviction. I wonder why the public media is not picking it up more strongly and bring it to the nation's attention. I wonder why the society is more obsessed with trivial sensations and not care about the fight for truth. Hats off to a true SATYAGRAHI. STYAGRAHA simply means TRUTH FIRST or TRUTH TO THE FRONT. Raj Bhat, may survive this tremendous fight and may God Bless YOU.

To Adam who posted "pathetic"

If I knew my pharmacist took only 25 seconds to look at my prescription... well, I wouldn't use that pharmacist again, ever. It's nice that you approach the dispensation of drugs with an assembly-line mindset, looking to churn out as many orders as time permits... and it's nice how proud you are about turning out 400 Rx daily... which must certainly make for a nice profit... But if I were a customer patronizing a pharmacist, I WOULD LIKE MORE THAN 25 SECONDS OF YOUR PRECIOUS GODDAMN ATTENTION.

poor rx...

i have 3 friends who have either been killed or nearly been killed by buggered RX... the one who died, his wife was thrilled be rid of him and didn't even complain when she realized she'd get her payoff from his estate years earlier than she expected... the other 2 were smart enough to make a habit of checking their rx against the original orders... they caught the errors before taking the meds... i do a full serch before taking any new rx in, there a lot of brujas out there who rx stuff so they can get the kickbacks and benefits the drug companies offer... don't trust any of them, ever...

Heather

Oh FFS, the Bush administration? Really? Hey libs, Bush has been out of office for TWO YEARS. Get OVER him. Damn libs and your obsession with the man.

What can they do

They have to focus on Bush and his 8 years. Keeps people from noticing Dems/Libs have had control of both houses pretty much the last 60 years. I remember the ongoing complaints about Bush using his line veto more than any President in history. Hard to forgive that. Obamba promised to do that, but he can't wait to sign once they "their bills" thru. Hope someone looks at this problem so this guy can start eating again.

"Pathetic" is as pathetic does....

Hey, idiot that posted the "pathetic" comment. Who asked you? I don't want anything to do with a lame pharmacist that can "accurately" check 400 rxs a day. I'd rather wait a little longer and get what I need. For anyone to expect that of anyone is PATHETIC.

No complaints?

I'm not surprised Medco says they have no complaints. However, a quick search on the Internet will show hundreds of unhappy customers, myself included. They claim to save you money, but are more expensive than any prescription plan I have been on, in terms of co-pays. Trying to dispute anything is nearly impossible, and they could care less about their clients. I'll be switching to Kaiser at the next open enrollment period at my work.

May I have the envelope, please?

"the judge seemed to abruptly reverse his stance". Must have been that envelope. The thick one.

former Medco`

The Medco facilities in Texas had a unique situation. They had the former secretary of the Board of Pharmacy on their payroll. Helped get lots of rulings in their favor. They played with quotas until mistakes went up then told everyone to slow down until they came down then ramp up again. I do not care how good you are as a Rph, doing over 60 an hour will allow a mistake to creep in.

No Complaints?

Merck Settles FTC Charges that Its Acquisition of Medco Could Cause Higher Prices and Reduced Quality for Prescription Drugs June 24, 2003 The Wall Street Journal U.S. Is Joining Lawsuit That Says Medco Put Profits Before Patients! I guess it depends where you look and under which corporate name you search, but facts are facts Medco was accused of Fraud, falsified records and making false statements to the Government. Oh this certainly gives me the impression that this company can be trusted, Why would Medco Lie? PROFITS??????

World Renowned Technology?-Facts.

Medco defines itself as the "world's largest, most advanced automated pharmacy". In its news releases and letters to share holders, Medco boasts of its speed, efficiency and technology. It claims that it spends millions of dollars on their World renowned Technology to fill prescriptions safely and accurately. It also claims that by doing so, it is trying to reduce the work load and possibility of human error. I take this opportunity to explain to the readers why these claims are totally false. I would like to clarify the actual facts. It is an established fact that majority of prescriptions processed at Medco are handwritten by the Doctors which necessitates significant requirement of having to clarify MD intent if prescriptions are scribbled by the doctor or not clear. Irrespective of the type of script (handwritten or Electronic), the fact remains that every prescription requires to be read and entered manually by a HUMAN technician or a HUMAN Pharmacist at their front end pharmacy and final checked by a HUMAN pharmacist for accuracy. The new Technology HAS NOT (and WILL NOT CHANGE THAT). If a Pharmacist is allowed less than 25 seconds per prescription he/she can not completely and accurately check for errors. The unsafe pace at which Medco pharmacists are forced to work at Medco leads to more Medication errors, left right and center. Once these errors are committed at the front end, ROBOTS that fill actual medications at the back-end can not stop them. Hence Medco's claims that new technology has reduced workload and possibility of human error are not only disingenuous, but also totally false. In fact, new technology and Medco’s deliberate wrongful Practices have increased the work load and the human errors committed by both Technicians and the Pharmacists. Medco CEO, Mr. David Snow is directly responsible for intentionally and knowingly misrepresenting the facts and jeopardizing patient health and safety. Medco Board of Directors have a fiduciary responsibility to both Medco patients and shareholders to truthfully present these facts in its naked form, take corrective actions to stop these practices and hold Medco CEO accountable to the public at large.

William Wallace

Raj Bhat by comparison is today’s William Wallace; he has engaged the opposition and stands by his ethics and beliefs. He has reached out to his colleagues for support; however, most have turned their backs due to fear of reprisal. We should all heed to his warnings and advice and stand together and move forward to engage Medco at their Corporate Offices in Franklin Lakes, NJ. through peaceful picketing and demanding change. Remember what Wallace said “Don't you wish at least to lead your men onto the field and barter a better deal with Medco (Longshanks) before you tuck tail and run?”

Look What Happend to Wallace

They turned him inside out! If William Wallace jumps off a bridge, will you?

Idiologist

Hey adam, I sure hope your RPh skills are better than your math! How many hours in your shift? (at Walgreens, it is typically 10 hours)(400/2)/10 is as few as 20 Rx per hour per pharmacist! About 20% of the 1000 per day quota Medco pharmacists would have to check in the same time frame. I should HOPE you could do so few!

A mega-company in Jersey not doing the right thing

Thank you, Raj Bhat for caring enough about millions of people to make a hero's stand. I hope your actions resonate and effect change. For any who would criticize, I would ask: are you involved in the day-to-day care of a loved one? If not, perhaps you've never experienced the bitter regret or anger when a careless mistake is made and that person suffers (or worse). To every MedCo exec and employee, consider that your policies might come back against someone you care about and reflect on whatever morality you had before the corporate machine hid it away.

Medco's Cozy Relaltionships with Regulators & Poli

"Former Medco" Pharmacist Bill, in his comments on this column throws light on Medco's Modus operandi of employing former Board of Pharmacy executives to help get rulings in its favor via cozy relationships. The person, he is referring to, I believe is Mr. Roger Anderson, who served as the Director of Professional Practices for all Medco facilities in the US around the time period, 2005. Medco also used the services of former Florida Board of Pharmacy executives Mr. Rod Pressnel and Mr. Ed Bayo to prevent the Board from taking corrective actions to stop the wrongful Medco Practices, in response to formal Complaint signed by more than 40 Medco Pharmacists here at Tampa facility. In a Board of Pharmacy meeting in Tampa in 2003, the Board had suggested a specific Florida Statute 465.026 as the remedy and asked the Pharmacists to submit a complaint. The pharmacists were assured that these practices would be promptly stopped. But the Florida Board did not take any action to stop these practices for more than 2 years citing lack of personnel resources to conduct a thorough investigation and ultimately decided to close the file after a knee jerk review. Medco fired me in retaliation 4 days after this determination by the Board though my performance was better than many other Medco pharmacists at that time. Bill has also aptly commented about how unreasonable check rates per hour cause increased number of medication errors. It is an established fact that a significant portion of the medication errors do not get reported at all, mainly because of the reasons that victimized patients do not know looking at the pills that they got the wrong medications. I would like to give some facts about Medco's Modus operandi of handling patient reported errors. There are reported complaints against Medco NOT EVEN WANTING TO ACKNOWLEDGE THE OCCURRENCE of Medication errors when reported. Let alone take responsibility to dispense the right medication as replacement. Also, during the course of screening process of these reported Medication errors, the Director of Pharmacy Practices at Medco has subjective discretion to determine whether a Medication Error should be charged as an error to the pharmacist or just dismissed as FYI (For your info only and not included in the calculation). When such a determination is made, pharmacists in Medco’s good books for cooperating with these wrongful practices get away with not getting charged for errors and the pharmacists who Medco does not like (for resisting these wrongful practices) can easily get victimized. There is a great amount of leeway to cook the figures when it comes to reporting quality as well. All these things go on unchecked inside the corridors of a Corporation at the expense of public health and safety. Food for thought... Medco reported that it spent $600,000 just in the last quarter for lobbying.Is it any surprise that Florida & US Senators and Congressmen who are aware of these wrongful practices are not doing any thing to stop these practices,despite my bringing this to their attention?

good luck

very noble cause. Wish u all the best in this endeavor.

We all are Americans First

We should fight these types of public safety issues, as Americans first with no regard to our political view points or party affiliations. We all are aware of the fact that a significant number of members of both the current political parties are guilty of getting unfairly swayed by lobbyists’ political donations that lead to backroom deals, at the expense of the interests of us common citizens. Hence I believe, our political beliefs, pointing fingers at each other or personal attacks and ridicule should not dictate the course of this debate. I do not know what exactly William Wallace stood for. I am carrying out this hunger strike protest in a totally non-violent and peaceful manner (not even holding a provocative banner to disturb the peace in the Community). I started this only on the basis of the strength and support of my beliefs and convictions as dictated by the inner God in all of us, what we term as personal conscience. I can only say that I am not a proponent of asking any one to jump off the bridge even in a figurative sense as subtly suggested via innuendo by the reader with a comment title "LOOK WHAT HAPPENED TO WALLACE". Getting emboldened by some of the passive bystanders, what Medco is doing is… pushing the innocent patients high off the cliff to their systemic downfall (that will ultimately lead to fatality) and indulging in a mockery of the system and intelligence of the society at large. It is up to us get united, stand up to this mockery and Insanity and expose Medco for what it really is and hold it accountable. What is really intriguing to me ... strictly viewed from a material plane from Medco's point of view is that its Pharmacy Practice is not even a smart way to run the business. Sweeping the dirt below the carpet and pretending to themselves and to the public how honorable their business practices are does not make any business sense by any standard of yardstick. Sooner or later dirt under the carpet is going to stink.

Moral Compass of my Fight

Here is the moral Compass of my Fight….continued from my previous comment. I am not a Religious scholar. Hence, I ask my readers to correct me if I am wrong in my expressions of theology of religious pronouncements herein. Just going by the demographic majority, I believe that the majority of these Regulators, Union Officials, the Medco CEO Mr. David Snow and other Medco officials, Attorneys who represent Medco, and, Legislators in positions of power, are Christians of one denomination or the other and that they believe that JESUS DIED FOR THE SINS OF HIS FELLOW MEN. Maybe they go to church to pray to Jesus to bestow on them all the material comforts, (even at the cost of embracing or participating in deceitful actions). Maybe, they pray to Jesus to give them smartness and intelligence to commit crimes against Society of which they are a part and ultimately represent. Maybe, they DO NOT pray to Jesus to give them strength and wisdom to do the right thing for which they are hired by Society. MAY BE THEY THINK JESUS WILL GET REBORN AND DIE AGAIN TO RID THEM OFF THEIR SINS. Though I am not a Christian by religion, I highly regard the spiritual wisdom and values that emanate from the life of JESUS CHRIST and THE PRINCIPLES OF PEACE and NON-VIOLENCE HE SYMBOLIZES.

Moral Compass-Continued

I am a Hindu by Religion. I am not at all a religious person in conventional terms.I know it will be a bad KARMA (actions) and I will have to pay for the consequence of my actions in front of the Almighty force if I let down millions of these innocent patients and walk away from the dangerous Medco Pharmacy Practices for my own comfortable life for my family and me. According to my understanding of the PURPOSE OF LIFE, this life is an opportunity to exercise our thinking capacity as human beings via our conscience to do the right actions (Karma) both in our personal and professional lives, especially when placed at difficult crossroads at various phases of life. I also believe, we have control only over our own actions (right or wrong) and have NO CONTROL over FRUITS or CONSEQUENCES of our actions. I believe based on the right or wrong actions we do during the course of our life, we will carry with us an enhanced or diminished soul when we die in comparison to the soul force we came into this life with when we were born. I also believe bad Karma not only affects the personal soul of the individual in question, but also the collective souls of his/her family members in good or in bad ways as the case may be. This concept is somewhat analogous to collective salvation for good actions and cumulative collective peril for bad actions, as pronounced in the Christian faith. I believe Atheists too have a moral compass of Right and wrong, though they do not believe in conventional God. People can differ in their opinions. What I am fighting against is not a matter of my opinion…IT IS A MATTER OF FACT AND THE ULTIMATE TRUTH. It is matter of RIGHT vs WRONG.

Spokeswoman

Your ongoing comments about this story are welcome on Mr Bhats blog www.ihungerstrike.blogspot.com (see Readers Leave Your Comments Here)

Don't cater to your insurance company... make them

I will never use Medco, I've heard too many accounts of death caused by them. Just have your Dr. rotate the prescription to a slightly different one each time the insurance company starts rejecting claims, or, join the prescription savings club at your local pharmacy and drop coverage to a low-premimum/high deductible plan, and use the money that would have been otherwise wasted on the higher premium to buy the prescriptions outright at your local pharmacy instead... you come out much happier in the end, and, you'll no longer have to worry about the formulary anymore.

pharmacy is worse than mcdonalds

Truck drivers are regulated by the Federal Government as to the time they can spend driving and working. By law, airline pilots cannot fly more than 100 hours a month or more than 1,000 hours a year. Even medical interns are starting to be protected from the abuses of their employers by having limits on their workloads. Pharmacists are being taken advantage by Medco and the State Boards are not protecting us, maybe the federal govt needs to get involved, this is a public health issue and we should not be checking prescriptions when we are tired and overworked.

Time to take action is Now

On Oct 17, 2010, I read a Washington Post article titled, “For many foreclosure processors, speed equaled money, rewards, penalties imposed for moving slowly” by Arlana Cha and Zachary Goldfarb. It states that, ‘Law firms competed with one another…and were paid for volume, so they processed as many as they could, leaving little time to read the paperwork and catch errors. … The system was so automated and so inflexible that once a foreclosure process began, homeowners and consumers advocates say, there was often no way to stop it…. This was a systemic problem…and pervasive and everyone knew about it. ---Speed and profit were emphasized over fairness to homeowners”. Now the state and federal law enforcement officials are conducting a fraud investigation. Similar situation exists at this time at Medco Health Solutions, one of the largest mail order pharmacies in the United States, says Raj Bhat in his blog. Speed and profits are emphasized over pharmacists sworn duty to patients and their safety by imposing a quota system. Bhat says that Medco's quota system, which requires their pharmacists to check 130 to 150 prescriptions an hour, is too much. Pharmacists are being forced to cut corners on public safety. In the corporate interests of perceived efficiency and profits, does a pharmacist have to ignore his sworn oath to put their patients first and be just a technical robot without applying professional judgment and ones own conscience? Does a conscientious pharmacist like Raj Bhat, has to resort to a hunger strike jeopardizing his health and his life? Do many more patients like Emily Jerry have to die from incorrectly dispensed medications before authorities investigate the grave danger to the public and put a stop to this dangerous practice? Please people, take action NOW before people you know suffer from wrongly dispensed meds.

740 rx's/day

I am a Medco RPH and check 740 prescriptions a day, sometimes barely even glancing at them. I apologize to the public for not caring about your prescription but I would like to finish my work in a reasonable amount of time (around 9 hours).

Pharmacist

I have been a RPh for over 20 years and absolutely agree with Mr. Bhat for his courageous, moral actions against these greedy,immoral Corporations like Medco. The public patients need to be aware of these dangerous practices. Anytime my children needs their Rxs filled, I have been going to my local drugstore and know that my Rxs get filled correctly and that the RPh does not have pressure to meet the quota. We are dealing with human lives here!!!!I sincerely wish the best for Mr.Bhat and his family for such courageous actions. Sometimes, I wonder how Mr. Snow can sleep at night with his unethical conducts and practices that he imposes on his employees. Sincerely yours, Dee

Hunger Strike Goes On

The Medco story is not over. Raj Bhat continues his hunger strike v Medco, now continuing since July 5, 2010 more than 6 months without any food and just water. You have his word of honor that the quota system exists at Medco and further, that it will undoubtedly harm clients as RPh's rush to do their work. Your life in their hands. Simple solution: STOP MANDATING THE QUOTA SYSTEM AT PHARMACIES LIKE MEDCO. January 9, 2011

MAXIDEX DEXAMETHASONE WARNING

I had eye surgery and in the post-op pack was MAXIDEX(dexamethasone) drops by ALCON LABS. Two days later I was BLIND Use Google and enter EPOCRATES MAXIDEX REACTION to verify Or call 800-757-9195 DEATH COUNT is on ehealthme.com now stands at 1000+ cpompare to PRED FORTE's 7 deaths

http://rx-medco.com/

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