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Practice Pearls

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  1. 20/06/2008

    Photo Pearl: Yar Boo papa!

    : Peter the Pearlcaster says: Some photographers set up their tripod to get a perfect composition, and wait for just the right clouds.

    Others of us are what is called photo journalists, who grab a magic moment with a pocket auto-everything camera. This is my grand-daughter Jemima playing 'Yar Boo papa!' in the play ground. (Click the More... link below) to see a full sized version of the photo.)

    It has made me an effective Windows Wallpaper. Some may not know how easy it is to do that with a digital photo. It is better if not too cluttered, else the desktop icons won't show clearly.

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  2. 23/05/2008

    Pearl: Last repeat

    Peter the Pearlcaster says: Got any patients who keep their scripts on file at the pharmacy? Or who constantly forget to get new scripts after their last repeat, even though you put a “Last Repeat” sticker on the box?

    Here’s how one pharmacy has ‘fixed’ the problem of regular patients who keep running out of scripts.

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  3. 07/05/2008

    Pearl: An ounce of praise...

    : Peter the Pearlcaster says: A fortnight ago AusPharmList moderator Mark Dunn told us that people were sending 'abusive 'off list' responses to AusPharmList posts they have posted.' Well, there is another side to that coin.....

    'After the sh*t I copped, it is nice to hear positive things. Thanks.'

    Who said that? Somebody to whom I sent a small email, after they had written something controversial and well-thought out.

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  4. 16/04/2008

    Pearl: First things last

    Peter the Pearlcaster says:

    "First things first" is what my dad always used to say. And it fits in pretty well with pharmacy, both in saving your mental energy, and in getting your point across.

    Also, "First things last" is a pretty wise adage too...

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  5. 06/03/2008

    Pearl: Parkinson's Debt Collection technique

    : Peter the Pearlcaster says:

    The people who have owed you money for too long, you know it, they know it ... it's getting tedious.

    A phone call is often a way of getting them to come in the next day.

    "Mrs Badpay, you owe me $$$ and I want it now!!!"

    "Well I would if I could but..."

    [she is in defensive mode now, not easily broken]

    Better, far better, is how cagey interviewer Michael Parkinson gets his closed-in guests to spurt out something that is on their conscience, that they would cover over if asked directly...

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  6. 06/02/2008

    Pearl: The Key to a P-P-P Perfectly fail-safe Practice

    Peter the Pearlcaster says:

    Are you Partial to a Pertinent, Practical and Precious Pearl, Pandering to Perplexed Pharmacists with Punctuality Problems, that Puts into Practice what Professionals Prefer to call a Proven high-Percentage Passive Protocol.


    Do you ever definitely positively have to remember to take a parcel to work, or to take one home? Because if you forget, you're Dead.

    Here is a 100 per cent Fail Safe system. It is simple, and it's guaranteed to work -- or your money back +10%, it's that foolproof.

    OK, Nature doesn't believe in 100% fool-proof systems; that's why she invented colleagues. But this system is pretty close.

    It is a take-home message to end all take home messages...

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  7. 16/01/2008

      Pearl: ANTOM SULPH: Peter the Pearlcaster says:

    This pearl neatly follows on from Bill Arnold's mum's script, published yesterday (and reproduced below today) on AusPharm..........

    For those of us who have trouble remembering our PINs [Personal Identification Numbers] for our various credit cards, here is an sparkling and original pearl of mine that ensures that you will never again have that trouble.

    Super memory? No. A technique for even the oldest among us (especially the oldest). Even if you forget to take your Aravas.

    Also for the code on any combination lock such as chaining down the charity collection tin, or the 4-digit code setting the burglar alarm, on closing for the night.

    Write the PIN number on your credit card.
    But ... code. And with a fine felt-tipped pen so as not to fade.

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  8. 21/12/2007

    Pearl: Here's something you would know

    It happens all the time and it can be really tricky: there is a doctor who is your pharmacy's main script writer and you need to diplomatically tell them something that they really need to know but probably don't. Example: They write a prescription for Sotalol, and a psych, unknown to them, has put the patient on Quetiapine. Which every pharmacist knows will likely end up with one valuable customer less and a visit to the coroner. How do I know this? Because it was a question thrown to the Smart Young Things at the recent Victorian Pharmacy Board final examinations. (It upsets cardiac conduction. And fails occasional pre-regs).

    Colleagues needing to discuss medication issues with a doctor might think, "D'Oh! He's an idiot" but it's generally not productive to use that approach.

    Perhaps they have ordered Bactrim for your client with a certain sulfa allergy that made their skin peel off years ago. No way would you dispense that. What do you say on the phone?

    * Never ever say, "I'm sorry to bother you doctor, but...". As if.
    * Always have a viable alternative in mind.

    Here is one way to raise it in conversation that will likely have them accept your suggestion, rather than get them defensive.
    And button down the hatches and think 'bl**dy chemists.'

    So what is the magic phrase that is the diplomatic way of informing a doctor of drug information?

    I use what Eric Child the ABC radio jazz guru once said, on announcing Duke Ellington's 1956 Newport Festival recording:

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  9. 23/11/2007

    Pearl: No medicine is expensive

    Consider two conversations:

    "This medicine is expensive."
    "I've made a special price for you."

    Which of these, as a customer, would you rather hear?

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  10. 09/11/2007

    Methadone -- getting paid is easy

    Peter the Pearlcaster says: Get a crowd of methadone / buprenorphine pharmacists together and you always will hear rumbles, It is our 'social work' and underpaid, at that.

    People slip behind, and if we keep at them, we become the worst person -- it niggles away at the good relationship we try to build up with our clients, keeping the conversation open.

    But now something has happened that changes things entirely; getting paid has become trouble-free, they are happy to keep ahead ...

    [You REALLY want to be an AusPharm premium member now, don't you?]

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