Wednesday, November 30, 2011

A Real Life Superhero

This is Roger. With the support of his mom, Roger dresses in a spandex suit and cape and patrols the streets at night, handing out food packages to the homeless when they can afford it.

Read about his story: Knight Warrior

Monday, November 28, 2011

Bandits Rob 9 Phoenix Pharmacies

Phoenix police are releasing surveillance video in hopes it will lead them to a group of armed robbers who have hit 9 pharmacies in just the past couple of months. People with any information about these suspects are asked to call Silent Witness at 480-WITNESS.

[Original video and news report remove by link source]

Police: Bandits hit 9 Phoenix pharmacies

Scorpion Hunt

Randy Babb of the Arizona Game and Fish Dept takes us on a night hunt for bark scorpions. He talks about what they eat, where they live and some of the myths about them.

Scorpion Hunt from Paint It Black TV on Vimeo.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Dispensing Errors

The last think any pharmacist wants is to be accused of being reckless -

Suffice it to say that I've worked in almost all aspects of pharmacy (except nuclear pharmacy), and in innumerable pharmacies, throughout my career - and I've seen everything. I can't tell you how many times my ass was put on the line because someone accused me of committing a dispensing error.

Many pharmacists won't admit it, but anyone who's been a pharmacist for any length of time has probably committed a dispensing error, can tell you just how easy it is to make a dispensing error, and can describe how the daily pressures of pharmacy operations could lead to potential errors.

No matter how much we don't like it or want it to happen, dispensing errors can be reduced, but never fully eliminated as long as human are involved. But, experience has also shown me that pharmacists often get blamed for dispensing errors that didn't actually occur.

I can't tell you how many times an investigation proved that an elderly patient, a family member, or a caretaker added multiple prescriptions into one vial for ease of use, mistakenly switched medication vials while filling a daily dispensing package, or changed vials just because of personal preference - after the prescription left the pharmacy.

I also can't tell you how many times I've had drug abusers bring back a vials to the pharmacy labeled hydrocodone/APAP that contained amoxicillin instead, saying that I gave them the wrong medication; or just how many times I've had a family-member picking up grandma's pain medication call to tell me there was thirty tablets missing, even after my back-count shows that I filled it accurately.

So although I hate to admit it, in all of the places that I've worked, the technology and robotics used by the highly-automated PBM mail-order pharmacies are the best that I've experienced in reducing dispensing error rates AND drug-seeking schemes. It nips these problems right in the butt.

The reason is because their robotics take a picture of the medicine inside of the prescription vial as it is being dispensed. This technology provides an invaluable service to the pharmacist. These pictures are then filed into the computer system with the prescription information for verification and recording purposes. Having a picture of the dispensed drug on file serves as proof of what was dispensed. Like the saying goes, a picture is worth a thousand words.

Now, if only the chains could fully incorporate this type of technology into retail pharmacy practice.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

A Scary Medication Misadventure

Did you know that over one-million people each year are harmed by medication errors? This is why it is imperative that you must personally become involved in your own, and your children's, health care. Please don't ever assume that a mistake cannot happen to you. They occur more easily than you might imagine. But you can personally help prevent these errors from harming you or your loved ones.

Ask your doctor to explain the prescription to you, and understand it before you leave his/her office. When picking up your prescription at the pharmacy, please double-check and question everything about it before you leave. Make sure you aren't getting someone else's prescription - double-check your name, address, the medication name, what it's used for, how it's to be taken.

Most importantly, always make sure to discuss it with the pharmacist, not the cashier or a pharmacy technician. Many errors can be prevented by performing these few simple steps.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Are You Addicted?

Are you addicted? Being a junkie is not that funny.

[original video removed by link]

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Under The Knife Abroad

In "Under the Knife Abroad," Vanguard correspondent Adam Yamaguchi travels to India, Mexico and Barbados to investigate one industry flourishing in these tough economic times: medical tourism.

Americans are increasingly being forced to seek medical care overseas, often in case life or death procedures, because they can't afford it here at home. Is healthcare America's next industry to be outsourced to foreign lands? Here's the trailer -

Monday, November 14, 2011

The Less You Know

Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) are caused by infections that are passed from one person to another during sexual contact. Workers at STD/STI clinics across the nation attest that very few of their infected patients — fewer than two in 10 men and one in 10 women — ever figured they were at risk for acquiring a sexually transmitted disease.

Yet this year alone, around 19 million Americans will be infected, most of which don’t involve tell-tale signs. Half of all sexually active people will contract an STD by the time they're in their mid-20s.

Whether or not such threatening statistics are looming over your love life, a sympathetic glance or wince towards anyone who's contracted an STD reveals the necessity to be tested, and the folly of making assumptions about one's own invulnerability — or a partner's presumed status.

Even the most promiscuous, careless people out there seem to believe their own personal regimen for staying safe, or rationalization for not being tested, is airtight. Finding out they were wrong is not only a rude awakening but a life-altering event. But, don't just take my word for it. See for yourself -

The Less You Know - STD PSA from Dan LaGuardia on Vimeo.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

The More Things Change

The following video short is from a comedy written, directed by, and starring, Charlie Chaplin.

First released in October 1940, Chaplin plays two characters who look strikingly similar - a Jewish barber and a dictator who looks like Adolf Hitler. Near the end of the film, after a series of bizarre incidents, the dictator gets replaced by his barber look-alike, and is taken to the capitol where he gives this rousingly optimistic speech.

The Greatest Speech Ever Made from GenCept on Vimeo.

I posted this video because it's amazing to me how a speech given over 70-years ago to address world conditions at that time, can be so closely relevant to current world conditions. This same speech could be used now as a rallying cry for change, just as it was intended to do back then.

I would love for the world to change as Charlie Chaplin described. But cynically, I believe people will always put their own self-interests above all else. As you can see for yourself, over 70-years later and we are right where we started. The more things change, the more they stay the same. Human nature will never change, and history is always doomed to repeat itself.

If my opinion sounds too cynical for you, then ask yourself, what is it about people and society that has really changed since then? Does greed and hate ever pass? Can altruistic people ever rule?

Friday, November 11, 2011

Are Your Kids Slomming?

The herd mentality is a dark and powerful force that pressures many adults to conduct themselves foolishly and inappropriately. Just imagine how that force must affect your kids?

Every teen's daily life is filled with that kind of pressure, some of it good, some of it bad. By staying involved in their lives you can influence them to rise above those negative peer pressures, to make smarter decisions, and to become better adults.

Slomming from Morgan Griswold on Vimeo and Above the Influence

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Turning A Blind Eye

I recently watched the movie, Sleepers, and it got me to thinking about those sorry-ass human beings at Penn State who turned a blind eye, or passed the buck, after witnessing or becoming aware of the alleged rape of young boys being perpetrated at their "institute of higher education".

I keep thinking of how those brave, strong, heroic athlete-types must have cowered in fear of losing their jobs or being blackballed if they didn't turn a blind eye to their leader's alleged depraved crimes.

I keep thinking of how college students, our future leaders, could possibly dismiss such horrendous crimes and then support the alleged perpetrators by rioting after they were brought to justice.

I keep thinking what's in store for those young boys as a result of allegedly being continuously raped for years because everyone selfishly turned a blind to the abuse?

But even worse, I keep thinking of the image of our society those young boys must have had in their minds while they were being abused, and when they realized that their "heroes" dismissed them as being an expendable part of the business of college football.

I wonder if those abused young boys envision the same bright future for themselves as the rioting college students do, or if they'll instead turn to violence or drugs in order to treat their "collegiately-damaged" sense of self-worth? What do you think?

Happy Veterans Day

To celebrate Veterans Day I'd like to post this interview of Frank W. Buckles, the longest surviving American veteran of World War I, whom after being blessed with excellent genetics and considerable luck for surviving the entire 20th century, passed away earlier this year at 110 years of age.

Buckles from Sean Dunne on Vimeo.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

A Glimpse Into The Future

Has anyone seen this United Healthcare commercial? I only first saw it this morning myself.

Notice anything unusual about it?

Like how they seem to be saying that they can provide a service that your community pharmacist cannot? That perhaps your local pharmacist wouldn't have caught a potential serious drug interaction without an insurance company's intervention? That you may be putting yourself at greater risk if you go to your community pharmacist, and are not a member of their plan?

Of course, it goes without saying that I support any effort to prevent medication mishaps, but doesn't anyone else see how this could be viewed as potential way for a mega-corporate insurance company to remove the "expensive" community pharmacist from the picture, and improve their bottom line?

Like I've been saying from the start, save your money, live below your means, and be prepared for the corporate world to eliminate what they believe to be a costly liability, instead of a valuable asset. You!

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Doctors Of The Darkside

The feature-length documentary, "Doctors of the Dark Side", exposes the scandal behind the torture scandal -- how psychologists and physicians devised, supervised and covered up the torture of detainees in US controlled military prisons. The stories of four detainees and the doctors involved in their torture reveal the terrible cost of putting doctors virtually in charge of detainee interrogations.

Here's a review of the film after it's premier at Georgetown University School of Law in October.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011