Pharmacists respond: What kinds of pharmacists get under your skin?

January 29, 2016

Readers react to Dennis Miller's latest blog.

In a recent blog post, retired chain-store pharmacist and frequent Drug Topics’ contributor Dennis Miller detailed personality traits and working habits of colleagues that, well, he found annoying. They ranged from narcissistic young PharmDs and cheerleader pharmacists to control freaks and know-it-alls.

He also described, partially in jest, how he believes corporate pharmacy expects pharmacists to act. “The ideal pharmacist in the eyes of corporate is a young female who is an affable airhead automaton, who does not question authority, who does not complain about oppressive metrics, who does not respond in kind to extremely rude customers, who can work her entire shift without stopping to eat or relieve herself,” Miller wrote.

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Boy did you respond. Many of you agreed with Miller’s list. Some disagreed. Several added to his list of annoying pharmacist traits. Some of your responses are below.

Miller plus blog equaled laughter

“Your commentary made me laugh. And very few things published in pharmacy journals anymore even make me smile,” Cecilia Rudloff from Omaha wrote. “I must admit I agree with every one of your points. And even though you are a male (and therefore stupid, inferior, and only tolerated for reproductive purposes), I'll give you a pass this time!”

Blythe Steele from Cincinnati added: “Spot on. These also apply to hospital pharmacy departments, and I had a person to fit every persona you describe. Thank you for the humor during my Saturday shift!”

Add lack of professionalism to list

“Pharmacists that have no consideration for the time of other pharmacists [get under my skin],” Leonard Edloe from Mechanicsville, Va, wrote. “Leave you on the phone forever and in some instances pick up the phone, find out you are another pharmacist and put you on hold again.”

 

Being professional in an ‘unprofessional atmosphere’

“I don't disagree with your findings. But we (pharmacists) are all of those things at one time or another. So I have to ask, what does the perfect pharmacist look like?” Sara Gribbins of Columbus, Ind. asked. “Aren't we just looking at personality traits of humans here?

“These are applicable in almost any business situation. It would be more interesting to focus on how to be professional in an unprofessional atmosphere,” she added. “This is the only way we, as a profession, will continue to exist in the future.”

See also: Is being a pharmacist costing you self-respect or family time?