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AIBU to get annoyed at being asked questions at chemists?

(105 Posts)
SooBee61 Sat 07-May-16 15:19:48

Today at the chemists (who shall remain nameless) I wanted some Solpadeine so am asked if they are for me and not to take them for more than 3 days. I've also been asked if I'm on any medication when buying other 'drugs'.

The lady before me in the chemists wanted some golden eye ointment. When asked if it was for her she commented that it was for a pet. Assistant immediately goes into police mode. 'I can't sell it to you, we're not licensed for that.' Lady says that it's for herself in that case. Assistant is implacable. I offered to buy it myself and she could give me the money. Assistant remains implacable saying she knew the circumstances!

I can understand why they might ask about other drugs as there can be a conflict but it's this policing attitude that grates.

my2bundles Sat 07-May-16 15:21:40

They are doing their job.

IAmAPaleontologist Sat 07-May-16 15:22:33

They have to ask and they have to abide by the licences.

MilkTwoSugarsThanks Sat 07-May-16 15:24:14

I think they can be prosecuted if they don't follow the rules and regulations to the letter.

OurBlanche Sat 07-May-16 15:24:17

Erm... they have to do that! They do it with prescription drugs too - they are the professionals who know most about drug interactions and 'policing' them is what they are trained/paid/expected to do.

Vedgeoh Sat 07-May-16 15:26:29

Working on a pharmacy counter has rules regarding what pharmacy products can be used for.
Say there is calpol on the shelf that anyone can buy and calpol behind the counter, if you want to buy the one from behind the counter (bigger bottle) we have to ask you the questions,
and if you say it's for your horse/gerbil/not child, we are not allowed to sell it to you,
even though you can just go and get two smaller bottles from the shelf.

arethereanyleftatall Sat 07-May-16 15:28:25

Eh? That's their job!! They're qualified to do this, for the very point of double checking prescriptions are correct.

WorraLiberty Sat 07-May-16 15:28:37

Struggling to see your problem here.

It's good that they're looking after people when selling them medication.

Tons of people don't bother reading the accompanying leaflet and even when they do, some don't understand it.

londonrach Sat 07-May-16 15:28:38

Yabvvvvu op. My friend is a chemist and there are legal restrictions so she has to ask.

Makesomethingupyouprick Sat 07-May-16 15:28:45

How unreasonable of them to do their job properly and try to look after your health.

NickyEds Sat 07-May-16 15:29:01

YABU They are duty bound to ask. Why "drugs" in inverted commas, you wouldn't be asked if you were buying bottled water, only drugs.

ScarletForYa Sat 07-May-16 15:29:20


They're not asking out of noseyness you know! You do realise drugs can interact adversely with each other don't you?

If they don't check you could end up dead.

Solpadeine contains codeine which is addictive. They are bound by law to ask everyone why they're taking it and advise no longer than three days.

As for the dog ointment I haven't a clue.

But the point is they're not doing it because they're on a power trip or because they enjoy 'policing' people.

They have a responsibility to practice pharmacy safely, you know, not to kill people etc.

SooBee61 Sat 07-May-16 15:29:39

I wonder how long this has been happening? I don't remember being quizzed when buying from a chemists when I was a teen! I realise they have to do it, anyone know when it was made law?

londonrach Sat 07-May-16 15:32:07

Op it always have be law. My friend had some vvvvv heavy pharmacy exams before she could work. I bet you dont remember as a teen but i bet they would have asked you or your parents or gp.

Chippednailvarnish Sat 07-May-16 15:33:32

God forbid a chemist actually cares enough to want ensure medication is used correctly!?!

I can't actually believe that you feel the need to ask . confused

BeauGlacons Sat 07-May-16 15:34:40

Do you know about the co-codamol addictions?

My pharmacist is really helpful. I take:


It was the pharmacist who pointed out that omeorazol makes risedronate much less effective and who suggested trying 250 naproxen instead of 500 to help avoid it and sold me a pill cutter.

Also told me not to take the adcal within four hours of the risedronate or the levothyroxine.

GP was happy to prescribe it and offered no advice.

Changing to zolendronate soon.

SooBee61 Sat 07-May-16 15:35:01

Oh well, I did ask!

Thanks for the replies.

NannawifeofBaldr Sat 07-May-16 15:35:28

It has happened always.

No doubts you'd be happy enough to blame the pharmacist if they sold you something contraindicated with an existing prescription.

OurBlanche Sat 07-May-16 15:36:21

The regs get tightened/broadened regularly... paracetamol... bicarbonate of soda... and plenty of other substances are recognised as dangerous in some circumstances and so are more closely regulated.

Even back when I was a teen smile

AdrenalineFudge Sat 07-May-16 15:36:34

They could lose their lose their job if they don't follow protocol to the letter. This isn't some jobsworth trying to make your Saturday afternoon difficult.

Madbengalmum Sat 07-May-16 15:38:05

It always happens, i buy eye drops for my dog/cat very occasionly and have to say it is for my gran/mum as they wont sell it as a pet medication even though it is exactly the same as at the vets, just ten times the cost!

SooBee61 Sat 07-May-16 15:38:34

Our GP practice has its own pharmacy (being a rural practice) so I doubt the resident pharmacist would point out conflicts in the drugs prescribed, especially as she's employed by the GP's! Sounds like it was to your advantage to have an independent chemist.

2pandasandapig Sat 07-May-16 15:39:12

Also all the sales staff have to do training around medicine interactions and have to follow rules and regulations so they aren't just being stroppy or on a power trip!

SooBee61 Sat 07-May-16 15:41:00

Do you mean it's 10 times the cost when buying from the vet? One of our GP's got into trouble last year for giving insulin meant for humans to a friend for her dog.

(Wish you could publicly reply to individuals on here like on other forums.)

FarelyKnuts Sat 07-May-16 15:41:18

I understand the needing to ask about drug interactions but the policing of codeine IS annoying as fuck!
Either make it a prescription drug or stop pharmacy assistants acting like you are a drug seeker every time you ask for an OTC medication!
I use a product called migralieve (on top of preventative prescription drugs) for chronic migraine. It contains codeine. I have to listen to a lecture every damn time, along with "helpful" ie useless suggestions of other products I could try such as nurofen.

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