reasons why a pharmacist can refuse to fill a prescription

pill bottle with pills aroundMost of the time, getting your prescriptions filled won’t be difficult. Submit the prescription to the pharmacist, or let your doctor do it for you. Then, wait for notification that it is ready for pickup. Sometimes, though, something goes wrong and your pharmacist will refuse to fill a prescription. Here are some valid reasons why this can happen. Please note that a pharmacist can NEVER refuse to fill a prescription simply because you present EzRx Drug Card when it’s time to pay!

1. The Pharmacy is Out of the Medication

Drug companies have started rationing some medications. This means that your pharmacy simply may not be able to get any more of the medication you need for a while. If this happens, call other pharmacies and see if they can help you out. If the prescription isn’t urgent, you can also wait until they get more.

2. The Pharmacist Suspects Abuse

In many states, all prescriptions filled are entered into a database. Sometimes, this is only for narcotic pain medication and other potentially-abused drugs. If your pharmacist suspects drug abuse, they can refuse to fill a prescription. You may need to get your doctor involved in the conversation or try another pharmacy.

3. The Prescription Appears to be Altered

If your doctor scratches something out and rewrites it, or fixes a handwriting error, they need to initial it. Otherwise, the prescription could appear altered to the pharmacist, which gives them a right to refuse to fill it. If you notice your doctor scratching something out, see if they will just write you a fresh prescription.

4. The Pharmacist is Concerned About Drug Interactions

When you get all of your medications from the same pharmacy, they are all entered into the computer. The pharmacist will check this before dispensing your drug, in case there are dangerous drug interactions. If there are, they will not fill the new prescription. This often happens when people are getting different medications from different doctors.

5. The Pharmacist has Other Concerns

If the pharmacy has your medical data available, the pharmacist may have other concerns about a medication and, therefore, refuse to fill it. If, for instance, the medication is related to one that you are allergic to, they may not fill it. Some doctors also write prescriptions for more than the standard dose, and some pharmacists will refuse to fill these, at least without speaking to the doctor first.

6. Refilling is Against Pharmacy Policies

This can cover a lot of things. Some pharmacies will not dispense more than a certain amount of narcotics for one person, even if they don’t suspect abuse. Others have different regulations and policies. A pharmacist must follow these if he or she wants to keep his job. If this happens to you, the pharmacist should tell you what policy your prescription violates so you and your doctor can come up with a different solution.

You should be able to get the medication you need but it may involve your doctor intervening on your behalf. Once again, always remember: a pharmacist can NEVER refuse to fill a prescription just because you present EzRx Drug Card when it’s time to check out.