A young woman has recounted the humiliating moment a pharmacist implied she was a ‘junkie’ while picking up a prescription for painkillers.
Anna Dooley, 30, decided to go to a locally-owned business to have her prescriptions held and processed after moving away from her regular pharmacist – a decision that would lead to an unfortunate confrontation.
Having spent 15 years suffering from endometriosis, a condition that results in tissue similar to the lining of the uterus growing outside the uterus, Ms Dooley is often left in agony and needing strong painkillers to live a normal life.
Ms Dooley describes the feeling as like having barbed wire wrapped around your stomach.
While filling out her prescription, Ms Dooley claims she was embarrassed by the owner of the pharmacy in front of other shoppers.
‘Not even (saying) a ‘hello how are you’, in front of a whole shop of people just (saying) ‘careful you might overdose’,’ she told 7Life.
After explaining her diagnosis to the pharmacist and had recently been in hospital for the condition, the pharmacist continued down his line of reason.
‘He says, ‘I have to give you this legally … it’s complimentary in case you overdose’,’ the man told Ms Dooley, handing her a spray bottle of naloxone.
Naloxone is a medication provided free of charge by the government to those using higher intensity painkillers to reverse or reduce the effects of opioids.
‘I told him ‘I have endometriosis’ but he didn’t want to hear me speak.
‘He began by talking over me and talking about overdosing as if it’s some sort of joke.’
She said that she was alarmed by how easily the pharmacist was making light of addiction and his overall behaviour.
He had even recommended to her that she watch the Netflix series ‘Painkiller’, which is centred on the opioid crisis in the United States.
She said that her experience with the pharmacist would have been much worse if she was an addict, ‘how f***ing dare you just broadcast this to everyone?’
‘He made me feel ashamed for wanting help,’ Ms Dooley said.
‘I ended up agreeing with everything he said because I was so mortified and wanted to get out of the situation quickly.
‘I just don’t understand why he couldn’t treat me like a human being and stop embarrassing me in front of everyone.’