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Customer Service Goes Beyond Prescription Delivery

Apr 20, 2015

A woman, 59 years of age, was diagnosed with diabetes while in the hospital. She was discharged on basal bolus insulin. The diabetes educator (CDE) was contacted to teach insulin administration via insulin pens upon discharge. The patient was taught, and performed return demonstration correctly. She was sent home with the unused pens prescribed for her during her hospitalization, along with prescriptions for all she needed in hand to take to her pharmacy.

Two weeks later, the pharmacy contacted the CDE. The patient’s insurance did not cover insulin pens, only vials and syringes. The patient did not know how to administer insulin in that way.


The CDE invited the patient to come in for a visit to learn, but the patient was working and could not come that far. The CDE asked the pharmacist to teach the patient. The pharmacist was reticent to teach the patient. The CDE told the pharmacist, “This is your customer. I expect you to provide excellent customer service.” The pharmacist taught the patient, and the patient did fine.

Lessons Learned:

  • When someone is started on a new medication, check to see if the patient’s insurance will cover it.
  • If the medication is not covered, explore an equivalent that is covered.
  • Check not only for the medication, but the delivery method.
  • If there is more than one type of delivery method, learn the difference in price, let the patient know the differences, including the difference in price. Let the patient choose.
  • What do you think is excellent customer service? Provide it.


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