In most cases, you will have enough medication to last until your next appointment, but occasionally, you may need to request a refill between appointments. Please do not hesitate to contact me in such a case; you should never have to go without your medicine, even for a few days, because you are waiting for your next appointment with me. Patients taking controlled substances that cannot be refilled also must request refills between appointments. The fastest, easiest way to request a refill is to send me a text. E-mails and voice messages are also acceptable means of communicating these requests, but texting is better.
PLEASE NOTE that faxed refill requests from your pharmacy will not be processed. This is for several reasons. Firstly, faxes your pharmacy send are sometimes not received. When they are, they are often unreadable, as these real examples show:
Among the automated faxed requests received from pharmacies, there are requests for refills of medications patients are no longer even taking. If a patient changes pharmacies, I often continue to receive automated requests from the pharmacy they are no longer using. Often, prompted by the insurance companies, pharmacies will also take it upon themselves to send requests for 90-day prescriptions, when such requests are not appropriate, such as for new medications we are still testing, or during a period of dosage adjustment.
If your pharmacy tells you that they have contacted me, or that they will contact me on your behalf for a refill, please be advised that those requests will not be processed.
Refill requests between appointments will only be honored when you contact me directly, and only when all of the following criteria are met:
1. You are due for a refill. A request is considered timely if it is approximately within one week (5-7 days) of the anticipated fill date. Refill requests earlier than that will be considered if you will be traveling, or in other, special circumstances, but early refill requests of controlled substances will not typically be honored, except in very rare circumstances. Lost, misplaced, stolen or discarded prescriptions of this class will not be replaced, so please be very careful with these medications, and ensure that you keep them in a secure place. Even in cases in which I authorize an early refill of these medications, pharmacies sometimes will refuse, so it is important that your prescriptions last until your next appointment.
2. You are not overdue for a followup appointment, and you have a future appointment scheduled. If you missed an appointment, or do not have another appointment scheduled, your request will be denied. You must have an appointment pending to be eligible for a refill between appointments.
3. Your account balance is not past due. Since all payments are due at the time of your visit, if you have an outstanding account balance, it is almost always due to failure to keep an appointment without canceling in advance, or canceling with less than 24 hours’ notice. Normally your credit or debit card on-file will be charged, but if you use Zelle to pay for your visits, or if your card is declined, you will have a past amount due, and this balance must be reconciled before any refill request will be considered. Please note that I am always available by phone to discuss avoiding any unnecessary interruptions to your treatment due to payment issues.
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