Tuesday, 20 April 2021
1:26 pm
Comments: 0
Posted by: Fluteboy
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Dosed to the t!ts

Today just so happens to be 420 day. It is a term that originated in California in 1971, and is now an excuse for people the world over to dally with Sweet Maid Marion. I'll leave those sods to it.

My only drugs shall be prescribed, and being largely house-bound and isolated in a village, get delivered to me by post by an online pharmacy. There are many available, and for the last year or so, I had the misfortune of using a service called Echo. Operated by Lloyds Pharmacy - the second-largest pharmacy chain in the UK - you would expect some kind of competence from the company that is second only to Boots. How wrong. The heartache and the consternation they provided was just not acceptable.

Picture the scene:
  • You have five medications to take every day - two for blood pressure, one for the prostate, one for depression, and pain relief for arthritis. You order them. A couple of days later you receive the prostate tablets, and are told that the rest will be dispatched when all are available.
  • A week passes, and none of the others have shown up. You are starting to run out of medication. You go online, and are told that all is being held up by the non-availability of the pain relief, and in their wisdom, they are holding on to your antidepressant and your TWO blood pressure tablets. You need them! You ask them to send what is available.
  • You eventually receive the missing tablets - having gone without them for two days already, and there is no telling of when your pain relief will be available.
  • Three weeks after your initial request, you are STILL without pain relief. You manage to get to talk to someone on the phone, and they just apologise for the non-availability, like it is somehow beyond their control.
  • Week after week, month after month, the second-largest pharmacy chain in the UK repeatedly and persistently cannot supply a medication as ubiquitous as Cocodamol. You end up having to call your surgery and have them dispense the pain relief at the nearest chemist, and then go on the local Facebook community page to see if anyone can collect them for you, as your arthritis-afflicted body will just not move properly!
Needless to say, I ended up going with another online provider, and so far I am looking forward to being able to receive what I need, when I need it. It comes to something when a major pharmacy cannot supply one of the most common pain relief products out there, and then tops it off by inadvertedly withholding essential blood pressure tablets. Did they want me to have a stroke? All I ever got from them was lame apologies. And I was not the only one. The online reviews are littered with distressed posts about people being kept without ESSENTIAL medications for weeks on end. These are products that make the difference between life and death, and the Number Two is quite literally number two's.

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