Walgreens Gives Teen Wrong Prescription, Shrugs

It’s bad enough that a Michigan Walgreens pharmacy gave a 14-year-old customer someone else’s prescription, but the teen’s family says the drugstore chain made the situation much worse by demanding that the family go out of pocket to finally obtain the correct drug.

WOOD-TV reports that Walgreens had been asked to refill the teen’s prescription for his ADHD medication.

When the prescription was picked up, the information on the bag — name of patient, address, name of drug — were correct.

The mom gave the bag to her son, assuming that its contents matched the label. What no one noticed right away was that the name on the bottle itself was different — same first name and same initial for the surname — and the drug it contained was different. Instead of the ADHD pills, it was Montelukast, the generic form of asthma medication Singulair.

The teen’s mom says her son didn’t suspect any problem right away because the color of his pills had changed before when switching from brand names to generics. According to her, the teen soon became “extremely feisty and bitey and moody, extremely moody, and his school work just went downhill everything went downhill.”

It wasn’t until it was about time to get a refill that the mom actually saw that her son had been taking the wrong meds for nearly a month.

“I’m grateful that it wasn’t a dangerous medication for my child,” she says.

When she and her husband went to Walgreens to show them what had happened and to get the proper medicine, they claim they were told they would have to pay for it.

“Are you serious?” the mom recalls saying to Walgreens employee. “My insurance has paid for this! And to top it off, it was somebody else’s.”

A rep for the drugstore chain tells WOOD-TV that Walgreens has a “multi-step prescription filling process with numerous safety checks in each step to reduce the chance of human error,” and that it’s investigating this incident.

“Cases like this are rare and we take them very seriously. If a prescription error happens, our first concern is the patient’s well-being. We’re sorry this occurred and we apologized to the patient’s family.”

The statement from Walgreens didn’t impress the teen’s family, especially since they say they’ve never received a “We’re sorry” directly from the company.

“I should be wearing boots right now instead of shoes. It’s getting deep,” says his stepfather. “They did not apologize to us, they told us to leave.”

Asks his mom, “Was that their way of apologizing — through you to us?”

As a result of this screw-up, the family says it has taken its prescription drug purchases to another pharmacy.

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