Prescriptions — The Bump
Military Families


Ok so we get Zantac for DS and we're down to maybe 5 days doses left.  I called to fill his script and the automated system said that it can't be filled until the 14th!  Seriously???? What am I supposed to do?  I thought about making an acute appointment but that's such a pain.  They don't have any regular open appts for the next 6 weeks.  Would Target fill it?  I don't overdose my child on Zantac, I promise but there's no way we will even make it to next Saturday.  Any ideas who I talk to about this, considering they don't allow us to talk to their pediatrician?

Oh and it's even worse because we can't get to the bottom of the bottle with the syringe they give us...what am I supposed to do?

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Re: Prescriptions

  • Call the pharmacy and explain the problem.  They should be able to call the pedi for you and get the dosage/amount fixed so that you won't run out before you can refill it again.  If that doesn't work, call the clinic and ask who the hell up there can fix this for you... go and talk to someone in person if you have to.  If that still doesn't work, make the acute appointment.  The inconvenience of that will be far less than the inconvenience to your son when he runs out of meds and his reflux is killing him. 

    As for getting it out of the bottom of the bottle, pour it in a medicine cup and use the syringe to get it out of that.  

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  • Leave a telephone consult with your PCM's nurse or like PP said, call the pharmacy.  I worked in several MTF's over the last 11 years - they won't just make you go without.  You may have to go to Walmart or Target to get it filled.  If that's the case, you'll have to get a prescription from your PCM to bring so they know the specifics.
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  • Thanks ladies! I'll try to call Monday but they usually don't allow us to talk to the pharmacy so hopefully I can.
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  • If they don't allow you to talk to the pharmacy then I"d walk IN to the pharmacy.
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  • You'll have to go in and talk to the Pharmacist, or get a written prescription from your PCM to take to walmart and it's usually about $3 for a prescription.  Also sometimes when they say when it will be ready it's just because they think they won't get it filled in time, if you walk in they may fill it right there for you.
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  • usually they say you cant get a new one until a certain date because tricare will only pay for certain rx refills in a set amount of time. it is ridiculous because it has made me go without my meds before but they wouldnt pay for it. your med sounds like something you take when needed though so hopefully it can be fixed. the other day they even said they wouldnt refill my synthroid because i wasnt due a refill until the 3rd. My doctor CHANGED my rx and they gave me a hard time. they finally gave it to me but it was a pain. i hope you get it fixed soon

    Married 11/27/09 and TTC right away
    Dx: Complete septate uterus with cervical duplication, endometrial polyps, PCOS, endometriosis, hypo thyroid, luteal phase defect
    4 uterus surgeries to correct my complete septum and to remove polyps and 2 years of seeing the RE, medicated cycles and IUIs
    Baby 1 and 2: BFP 3/3/11 with 2 babies EDD 11/1/11, M/C 4/6/11
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    Baby #5: 3/13/12 BFP! EDD 11/25/12 ANOTHER m/c :(

    Baby #6: 2/14/13- BFP! EDD 10/24/13, CP 2/19/13
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    4th septum resection on 5/31/13.
    Baby #9: 6/29/13 BFP. C section scheduled for March 5th!

    My miracle baby was born March 5 at 9:33am. He was 8 lbs 12.5 oz and 21.25 inches long!


  • As a pharmacist who has worked both at an MTF and in the civilian sector, I would like to explain how Tricare determines when a prescription is okay to fill.  Every time a pharmacy (MTF or civilian) puts a new prescription in their computer, they fill out a field called "days supply."  They tell the computer (and the insurance) how long that supply of medication should last.  We were pretty lenient at the MTF I worked at and only required that 75% of this period of time be passed before we would allow a prescription to be refilled. 

    If a prescriber tells you to take a medication differently than it was originally prescribed, then you need a new prescription.  It only makes sense that insurance companies don't want to pay for people to fill prescriptions more often than they need to.  And no, the insurance company isn't just going to take your word for it that you're supposed to take 2 of something instead of 1 now.  You need a new prescription as proof. 

    Some possibilities why the automated system is telling you the Zantac prescription is too soon:

    1) The pharmacy entered an incorrect "days supply" when typing the original prescription.

    2) The pharmacy didn't give you as much medication as they were supposed to.

    3) The doctor increased the dose you're supposed to give without writing a new prescription.

    4) If you're using a measuring device like a teaspoon or medicine cup rather than a syringe or dropper, you could be giving more medicine than you intend to. 

    5) Liquids are difficult, and if a little bit drips here and there, you may have lost more medication over time than you realize. 

    This should be a fairly simple problem to fix.  If  the doctor has changed the dose, get a new prescription.  If that requires an urgent care visit, then that's what it will take.  If that's not the case, call the pharmacy when they open.  I've called lots of different base pharmacies, and I understand that some of them can be difficult to reach.  However, you CAN talk to someone in the pharmacy with enough persistence.  If you truly can't reach anyone by phone, go in to the pharmacy and physically talk wtih someone.   Calmly explain the situation.  Ask them how they can help.  If you feel like you aren't getting anywhere, ask for a supervisor.  Make it clear that all you want is for your child not to run out of reflux medication.  An MTF pharmacy has the ability to override the system and fill a prescription early.  When I was OIC of my pharmacy, I would do that occasionally depending on the circumstances. 

    If you try to take a presciption to a civilian pharmacy, you will run into the same problem.  Unless the directions changed, Tricare will refuse to pay for the prescription because it's too soon.  A civilian pharmacy would be willing to fill the prescription early, but you will have to pay the cash price. 

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