Today, I ran into a very interesting, unusual situation. I had someone come to the pharmacy with a speech disorder that makes him stutter very badly. I have dealt with language barriers in the past, but this one was new to me today.
He had come in for a new medication that he had never taken before. At the pharmacy I work in, our computer system flags prescriptions that have never been filled for the patient. It then prompts the person ringing register to bring over the pharmacist so he/she can discuss side effects and such with the patient. It’s a pretty good system and one I feel is important. Anyway, it flagged me to talk to him about a blood pressure medication. I went over and started my spiel. After I finished, I asked him what questions he had. That’s when I realized he was a stutterer.
For whatever reason, this doesn’t bother me. Not at all. I have all the patience in the world for people who stutter. Maybe it’s because I tend to fill most of my sentences with, “Um,” and backtrack my statements when I’m in the middle of them. It’s not stuttering, but I’m sure it’s annoying. But, I digress. Whatever the reasoning, stuttering doesn’t bother me. He was very appreciative of this. After we talked about the medication, he told me about a visit he had to another pharmacy in another state. He told me the pharmacy staff was rude and didn’t let him talk or explain himself. He thanked me and told me he would definitely come back to our pharmacy again. Sure, the conversation took five minutes when it should have taken two, but it was important, and I made a connection with another patient. It’s things like this that make me proud to be a pharmacist and make it all worth it. =)
The one thing that really aggravated me, though, was the looks he got from the other patients in the pharmacy. As he was talking to me, everybody else stared at him with disapproving expressions. I even saw a person snicker and hide a chuckle. How horribly rude some people can be! He can’t help stuttering. It’s not like he chose to have a speech impediment. Have some compassion and respect!
Anywho, that’s it for today. Sorry about the massive entry upload. I backdated the ones from over the weekend because I was exceedingly busy and didn’t get time to upload them. They were written; they just needed to be pasted to here (and a nifty picture needed to be added). I hope everyone is well!
Image courtesy of http://i522.photobucket.com/albums/w345/andreaperez_photo/stutter.jpg