Wednesday, 19 December, 2018

CVS apologizes to transgender woman for prescription denial

Hilde Hall Hilde Hall
Ben Pena | 24 July, 2018, 21:44

A transgender woman in Arizona said this week that a CVS Health pharmacist refused to fill a prescription for hormone therapy, prompting the drugstore company to apologize, say the conduct violated its policy and note that the pharmacist was no longer employed there. Hall wrote, "I left the store feeling mortified". The state law does not mention hormone therapy prescriptions.

"I was finally going to start seeing my body reflect my gender identity and the woman I've always known myself to be", Hall said.

A transgender woman is speaking out after she said a CVS pharmacist denied her hormone prescription.

"My family supports me, fortunately, and helped me work through the anger and humiliation this experience caused", she wrote.

'He just kept asking, loudly and in front of other CVS staff and customers, why I was given the prescriptions, ' Hall wrote in her ACLU blog. When she called her doctor's office to explain, the prescription was sent to a nearby Walgreens, where it was filled "without question".

It was the second recent controversial incident to take place in a Phoenix-area pharmacy.

Even though CVS claims the pharmacist violated company policy, Arizona law states that pharmacists are allowed to refuse to fill a prescription for moral or religious reasons so long as they inform their workplace about their "religious convictions" ahead of time, the Arizona Republic reported.

The apology came just weeks after a Walgreens pharmacist in Peoria, Arizona, refused to give a woman her miscarriage medication.

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Arizona is one of six states that allow pharmacies and pharmacists to refuse to fill some medications - usually those related to emergency contraception - on religious or moral grounds.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Arizona encouraged Hall to speak out to create change on behalf of transgender people, said Steve Kilar, ACLU of Arizona spokesman.

It marked her first round of hormone therapy.

In that apology, CVS acknowledged that Hill attempted to contact the company about the incident but was ignored. My doctor ended up having to call the prescription into the local Walgreens, where the medication was filled without question.

Additionally, Hall also wrote that she is one of the lucky ones, explaining that, unlike some other transgender individuals, she has a great support system and left the encounter physically unscathed.in terms of her support system and how that encounter might have played out for someone else. No healthcare worker should rely on personal beliefs to reject decisions made by doctors and their transgender patients about medically necessary care.

Employees are required, however, to have another pharmacist or manager handle the prescription so that the patient's needs are met "in a timely manner".

"Hilde hopes that CVS will make its nondiscrimination policies public, so that transgender and non-binary customers have some assurance the corporation will take appropriate action if similar discrimination occurs in the future", Kilar said.

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