coffee4drug

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I am planning to write an article documenting my six-month struggle with California Board of Pharmacy and submit it to LA Times or another major news company in California. The people working at the licensing department are grossly lazy and incompetent that I hope an article could raise some accountability by drawing public attention.

Does anyone who has written any article about a government agency for a newspaper have any suggestion on the best way to get a newspaper to publish the article? Would it be possible for a journalist to interview me so that he could write a better article with his journalistic skill?
 

Its Z

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Don't mess with state agency. You can't win. And they'll have you pegged and harrass you..

Spend your energy doing something more productive.

Public really couldn't careless about how BOP treats RPh.. and especially in CA, people will just say..STFU, you still have a job.
 

owlegrad

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Don't mess with state agency. You can't win. And they'll have you pegged and harrass you..

Spend your energy doing something more productive.

Public really couldn't careless about how BOP treats RPh.. and especially in CA, people will just say..STFU, you still have a job.
I have to agree, I almost can't think of a worse way to approch your problem. Just move on...
 

confettiflyer

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Same, and no one will want to publish an article about how some "overpaid health professionals who make $100k+ counting pills" experience random delays with government agencies (like, wow, this is news....a government agency that's slow??)

Reader response: "so what else is new? :sleep::sleep:"

Skip it and move on. The last time LAT published an article about an incompetent agency, it involved the nursing board allowing ex-convicts to practice by not checking with other databases. THAT is 100x more interesting and makes for a scandalous read.
 

Pharmavixen

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The trouble with this attitude is that things don't change. Cutting your losses and moving on may be a psychologically healthy strategy to deal with a toxic workplace, but sometimes there's a large systemic problem, and if you just walk away, you may spend the rest of your life wondering if you did something that was morally wrong out of cowardice.

So I'd support someone who wants to be a whistleblower. Here's a great article about a pharmacist whistleblower and the **** he went through. I'd suggest that rather than going to the media, you explore how you might expose this situation internally; ie if there's a way of correcting the situation more quietly - if you are too fast to go to the media, you are branded a troublemaker. But if you've exhausted all other channels, then go for it.
 

Its Z

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We're talking about bankrupt California state agency who practices Furlough... of course I'm not sure the BOP has been hurt by it... but I doubt inefficient state agency having to deal with much increased workload due to increased number of licensure demand caused any injustice and hurt the public by their action (or the lack of) that demands a whistleblower case.
 

type b pharmD

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i applaud your motivation and willingness to risk some negative publicity (although i highly doubt the board would "harass" you if you did come out with this story, they have better things to do with their time)

however. this doesnt seem like a major, groundbreaking story that a place like the LA times would want to cover. unless there has been some extreme malfeasance , corruption , or utter incompetence , it probably isnt worth bringing to the public's attention.

like Z said .. what's the bottom line of the story? a state agency is being slow. not exactly newsworthy.

however, as taxpayers we pay the BOP in order to preserve and protect public safety. if you can make an argument that there is a substantial risk to public safety, the news'd be all over your story.

however i suspect this is not the case, if they are simply backlogged.
 

Ava999

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Same, and no one will want to publish an article about how some "overpaid health professionals who make $100k+ counting pills" experience random delays with government agencies (like, wow, this is news....a government agency that's slow??)

Reader response: "so what else is new? :sleep::sleep:"

Skip it and move on. The last time LAT published an article about an incompetent agency, it involved the nursing board allowing ex-convicts to practice by not checking with other databases. THAT is 100x more interesting and makes for a scandalous read.
Confettiflyer I REALLY love your profile pick...have you heard the song?
 

owlegrad

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The trouble with this attitude is that things don't change. Cutting your losses and moving on may be a psychologically healthy strategy to deal with a toxic workplace, but sometimes there's a large systemic problem, and if you just walk away, you may spend the rest of your life wondering if you did something that was morally wrong out of cowardice.

So I'd support someone who wants to be a whistleblower. Here's a great article about a pharmacist whistleblower and the **** he went through. I'd suggest that rather than going to the media, you explore how you might expose this situation internally; ie if there's a way of correcting the situation more quietly - if you are too fast to go to the media, you are branded a troublemaker. But if you've exhausted all other channels, then go for it.
Awesome story, although I would not equate the OP's plight of a slow BOP to that of the author of that paper. Still, awesome link dood! :thumbup:
 

confettiflyer

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"The DMV is slow and inefficient, suit alleges"
by Gilbert Grape, Times staff writer

SACRAMENTO -- In a groundbreaking lawsuit today, a California driver has filed suit against the California Department of Motor Vehicles, alleging that it is grossly incompetent, ineffective, and a waste of time.

"I feel like I just sit there the whole time, twiddling my thumbs," says coffee4drug, the plaintiff in the case. "I know money is tight, they're on furlough, and we're the most populous state in the nation...so what?"

When pressed for a solution, coffee4drug read off a laundry list of ideas. "We should cut education and Medi-Cal payments, and maybe hire some six-sigma ninjas to get in there and shake the place up."

A thorough Times investigation revealed that the cost of revamping the DMV to McDonald's-like efficiency would be $100,000,000,000, given the union wages and benefit costs of additional employees and a computer system running Windows 95. Further, secret WikiLeaks cables have indicated that DMV employees are no more douchebaggy and slow than other government workers.

While everyone agrees the DMV can go faster, not everyone agrees on how to pay for it. Democrats in the legislature objected to any cuts in social services, while republicans are steadfastly holding the line against new taxes.

"I don't know...it's just dumb, it's putting little old ladies crossing the street at risk because after I get out of here, I'm in a rush to get to other things and I'm usually texting people that I'm going to be late while eating my lunch."

The DMV was unavailable for comment, as they are closed on weekends.




Yeah, this is what the article would look like. :sleep::sleep::sleep::sleep: Replace DMV w/ BOP.
 

Its Z

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:smuggrin:

I laughed.
 
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I have been trying unsuccessfully to find out the names of individuals who were working on my applications. It appears that only some, but not all, public employees' name and salary information are subject to public knowledge. However, since the Bell City's scandal regarding the elected offficials' exceedingly high salaries, California is expanding the laws on public employees information disclosure (http://www.digitalcommunities.com/articles/California-Cities-and-Counties-Mandated-to.html). Can anyone share his or her knowledge on the extent of such laws and whether it is possible to obtain the information on the individuals working at California BOP?
 

SpirivaSunrise

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I have been trying unsuccessfully to find out the names of individuals who were working on my applications. It appears that only some, but not all, public employees' name and salary information are subject to public knowledge. However, since the Bell City's scandal regarding the elected offficials' exceedingly high salaries, California is expanding the laws on public employees information disclosure (http://www.digitalcommunities.com/articles/California-Cities-and-Counties-Mandated-to.html). Can anyone share his or her knowledge on the extent of such laws and whether it is possible to obtain the information on the individuals working at California BOP?
Seriously?
 
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coffee4drug

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Don't get so excited. I figure that if people know their names are public information maybe they would feel a bit pressured to put extra effort into their work. It is similar to why the state requries pharmacits and techs to wear name tags with a minimum font size requirement (at least according to my interpretation of the law).
 

Pharmavixen

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I have been trying unsuccessfully to find out the names of individuals who were working on my applications. It appears that only some, but not all, public employees' name and salary information are subject to public knowledge.
Why don't public sector employees have a right to privacy?

Where I live, only public sector employees making over $100,000/year have their names, positions, and salaries published, on an annual "Sunshine List." Popular reading around my workplace when it comes out - we find out who is abusing overtime.
 

owlegrad

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Why don't public sector employees have a right to privacy?

Couldn't agree more. With the exception of elected officials, I can't imagine why it's any of my business what the names, salaries, etc. of public employees are.
 

Its Z

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Whatever happened to the person who sued McDonalds for hot coffee?
 

SpirivaSunrise

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Don't get so excited. I figure that if people know their names are public information maybe they would feel a bit pressured to put extra effort into their work. It is similar to why the state requries pharmacits and techs to wear name tags with a minimum font size requirement (at least according to my interpretation of the law).
Who's getting excited?

You think that's why State requires differentiation between PhT and RPh on name tags? To make someone put extra effort into their work?
 

Ilikechemicals

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My experience with the California BOP.... I called them so I could ask some paperwork question. Ring, Ring, Ring. "No one is available to take your call. Transferring you to a voice message. The voice mail is full. Good Bye." This was the same message I got for 2 weeks straight.
 
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coffee4drug

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We are trying to figure out what you are talking about.

I do wish government offices were held more accountable for crappy customer service but like world peace, not gonna happen.
My interpretation of the state law that require RPhs and techs to wear a name tag identifying their names is that these healthcare workers would be pressure to behave more professionally knowing that they could be easily identified.

Is that too that hard for you to figure out?
 

confettiflyer

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My experience with the California BOP.... I called them so I could ask some paperwork question. Ring, Ring, Ring. "No one is available to take your call. Transferring you to a voice message. The voice mail is full. Good Bye." This was the same message I got for 2 weeks straight.
Secret is certified mail + return receipt...this goes for anyone/anything. Usually regulations only apply to communications by this method. I don't do this if it's a simple inquiry (like where the hell is my paperwork).

Cover your ass, create a paper trail....advice for life.

I dunno, the CA BOP *does* take a while, but if you follow their prescribed timelines and methods of communication, they'll get back to you. My intern license took forever, but once I hit 60 days after my check was cashed, they responded to my email within 48hrs.

Tricks/techniques are discussed in the licensing subforum.
 

rxlea

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Best.thread.this.week.
 

spacecowgirl

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My interpretation of the state law that require RPhs and techs to wear a name tag identifying their names is that these healthcare workers would be pressure to behave more professionally knowing that they could be easily identified.

Is that too that hard for you to figure out?
Apparently so. I wasn't connecting your widely scattered and unrelated dots. I'm still not sure what the problem is.

Now I'm trying to figure out why you're such an old crank. Leave that for Z and Old Timer.
 
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Its Z

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Now I'm trying to figure out why you're such an old crank. Leave that for Z and Old Timer.

I resemble that remark.. but we're old cranks because we're old. But Old Timer is much older than me.
 

rph3664

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My experience with the California BOP.... I called them so I could ask some paperwork question. Ring, Ring, Ring. "No one is available to take your call. Transferring you to a voice message. The voice mail is full. Good Bye." This was the same message I got for 2 weeks straight.
Illinois is almost as bad. I am convinced that nobody actually works there.
 

All4MyDaughter

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She won. That was a legitimate lawsuit.
Not really. She won the initial case, but the verdict was reduced by the judge. the plaintiff settled with McDonald's BEFORE the appeal was decided (both the plaintiff and McDonald's appealed). Because the settlement was confidential we do not know the terms. Settled cases do not create binding legal precedent.
 

Old Timer

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She won. That was a legitimate lawsuit.
The only reason she sued was that she requested McDonalds pay her medical expenses. No request for other damages was requested. McDonalds refused and she filed suit. Discovery can be painful.

The reason she won the case was that she was able to prove:

  • That McDonalds knew that people were being burned by the coffee.
  • They were preparing and selling coffee at higher temperatures than the coffee industry recommends
  • They did this solely for profit as the hotter the coffee, the better it sold.
The verdict was not overturned, only the award. She settled for a reasonable amount.

This is not the typical slip & fall lawsuit....
 

Ilikechemicals

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Secret is certified mail + return receipt...this goes for anyone/anything. Usually regulations only apply to communications by this method. I don't do this if it's a simple inquiry (like where the hell is my paperwork).

Cover your ass, create a paper trail....advice for life.

I dunno, the CA BOP *does* take a while, but if you follow their prescribed timelines and methods of communication, they'll get back to you. My intern license took forever, but once I hit 60 days after my check was cashed, they responded to my email within 48hrs.

Tricks/techniques are discussed in the licensing subforum.
I dont care if they take awhile to process paper work. My complaint was having a so called "contact" phone number that was never answered. On top of that it had a full mailbox that hung up on you for at least 2 weeks. I eventually just gave up (like they wanted)

They didnt have the good sense to put up a message that said "Do to higher than expected call volume, we will never check this line, so dont bother calling."

If you ran a pharmacy the same way the California BOP operates you would kill a few people and certainly be out of business.
 

confettiflyer

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I dont care if they take awhile to process paper work. My complaint was having a so called "contact" phone number that was never answered. On top of that it had a full mailbox that hung up on you for at least 2 weeks. I eventually just gave up (like they wanted)

They didnt have the good sense to put up a message that said "Do to higher than expected call volume, we will never check this line, so dont bother calling."

If you ran a pharmacy the same way the California BOP operates you would kill a few people and certainly be out of business.
dang, you tried for two weeks? i would have tried something else after 3 days, tops.

but alas, they're not a pharmacy, they're the DMV for druggists. move along move along, nothing new here.
 
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I would like to echo the comments on Ca BOP. It sucks.. but makes getting licensed in any other state seem like a walk in the park. At least I'm not expected to get a brand new SSN card with my middle name (not just middle initial) so I can sit for an exam. Oh Ca BOP... how I have enjoyed "playing" with you. ;)