Request for Comments and Announcement of Workshop on Pet Medications Issues, Project No. P121201
Over the 13 years that I have worked as a veterinarian I have prescribed many medications for my patients. Some of these medications have been dispensed by the hospital and some of them have been filled by outside pharmacies. In my experience, most of the clients choose to have the medications filled at our hospital because they do not want to deal with the confusion that can occur when multiple parties are involved. There are laws in place that require us to write a prescription for those who want a prescription. There are also laws that the medication be labeled appropriately. There are many pharmacies who are pushing to get scripts from our patients to make money. They do not always know what is dangerous to our patients. For example, xylitol is a sweetener in some medications that causes low blood glucose and liver failure in dogs. Humans do not have these same side effects so pharmacists do not know to monitor for this ingredient. Once I prescribed a blood pressure medication for a cat. The pharmacist accidentally transcribed the directions wrong and the owner gave an overdose to her old cat in kidney failure. Again, familiarity with the approximate dose in this species would have been helpful. I happily write prescriptions when owners want them and even inform them if very expensive medications can be aquired safely elsewhere. I do not believe these changes that are being considered are in the best interest of our patients.