CVS, the nationwide pharmacy, is looking into an allegation that has shocked the public in New Jersey. In Garwood, New Jersey, a woman began to have an asthma attack in front of a CVS and she and her boyfriend ran into the CVS to purchase an inhaler. He had only a $20 bill but the inhaler was $21, so the store reportedly refused to give it to her even after she fell to the floor.
The boyfriend states that he offered, in addition to the $20, his wallet cell phone and ids (which showed he lived around the corner) to cover the added dollar. He says that still refused. Fortunately he was able to call a paramedic who rushed over with an inhaler.
This would make for an interesting torts case. It would fall into the general rule that there is no duty to rescue. However, it would have been interesting if the boyfriend had just grabbed an inhaler under a claim of private necessity (though this is likely impossible since the inhalers are presumably kept behind the counter). Under private necessity, he would still have to pay for the inhaler — eventually.
What is clear is that, for roughly one dollar, CVS have cost itself millions in really bad publicity.
42 thoughts on “CVS Reportedly Refuses To Give Inhaler To Woman During Asthma Attack Over One Dollar Discrepancy”
Nothing wold surprise me about CVS
A right wing company that makes huge profits on the backs of the poor and elderly, and sells past date goods.
What is that LOTR extended you tube on your site under Wootsey’s or something like that comment. It looks disgusting…although I it is not clear it seems pretty bad…like a girl and a horse. Please remove it from your blog. Don’t you look over your comments??
Lex said: “You all see it just as a $1.50. That is not the point, had it been 1,500,000.00 would you have said the same thing? The point comes down to the business losing money. Just as if a person came into the store and wanted a 100.00 worth of food but didn’t have the money.”
well..now that you’ve opened my eyes and laid out the comparison to apples and anvils, it’s clear to me that…
that’s the silliest thing I’ve read on the internets today and that’s saying something.
Of course I’ve yet to visit Jonah Goldberg so there is a good chance you’ll lose the crown.
i wouldn’t either… if she can’t afford it she can’t get it, period..
You all see it just as a $1.50. That is not the point, had it been 1,500,000.00 would you have said the same thing? The point comes down to the business losing money. Just as if a person came into the store and wanted a 100.00 worth of food but didn’t have the money. They claimed they are starving to death, but since they do not have the money to buy the food, does that, again entitle the company at fault? No. I think by stating they would have been sued is a foolish statement.
Oh the times, oh the customs?
I can’t help but wonder how many of you rolled your eyes when your parents talked about “young people these days.”
Good Samaritans are we, the Nation of Jews, Muslims and Christians….
With shit like this going on, how on earth are we not ruled by the party of Atheism yet?
Dear Hi There,
WTF DO THOSE QUESTIONS HAVE TO DO WITH ANYTHING! Clearly you would be a GREAT employee for CVS.
justthinking: If one believes the universe is a random, cold, uncaring place whose origin is simply accidental then ones value system grows from that belief.
I strongly disagree with this. I do feel the universe is a random cold uncaring place whose origins are simply accidental, however that makes it that much more important to have compassion and care about my fellow travellers. I don’t know anyone with the same views that doesn’t feel the same way. This pharmacist sounds like a lot of folks I have seen at certain rallies that have been in the news lately.
Maybe Pete and\or Alex can back me up on this but it is my experience that inhalers cannot be used to make crystal meth. 2 years ago when I ended up in the emergency room for what seemed to be pneumonia, the Dr. suggested I try an inhaler, I also tried the pills. The pills I could not buy because I have no ID but I could buy the inhalers. The reason given to me, by a CVS pharmacist, was that the inhalers, as of that time at any rate, couldn’t be used to manufacture meth.
And sometimes good people try to save lives and are ignored. What follows is a stunning OpEd from the LA Times on Oct. 15:
WikiLeaks and 9/11: What if? Frustrated investigators might have chosen to leak information that their superiors bottled up, perhaps averting the terrorism attacks. By Coleen Rowley and Bogdan Dzakovic
A Wikileaks tweet from a few months ago was something like “The Washington Post story is just the beginning. By year’s end, lights on, rats out.” Too many rats, from my perspective.
“justthinking wrote: He was simply cold and uncaring. He was able to witti”ness (sic) this young lady lying on the floor gasping for breath knowing he was able to assist her but he simply lacked compassion for her condition. This is the world we have made.
Yep. And it makes me think of the NYC EMTs who let a pregnant woman di not too long ago. One of them has been charged and the other one was shot in an unrelated incident.
While this may be “the world we have made”, giving up isn’t an option.
“The arc of the moral universe is long, but veers towards justice.” MLK, Jr.
yup….and we can call the kids aliens all we like, they are truly reflecting just what they have been taught. We are stuck with it till they come into their own and realize they have just as much reason and right to reject this crap as they have ‘obligation’ to behave with the same old dysfunctional values….
Compassion, empathy, love for others, we all agree these are good things to possess. When we see them lacking in others we are often angered at the results. America is a conflicted society. We proudly reject traditional values yet cling to virtues that are rooted within those values, such as compassion. I suggest this pharmacist may have been reflecting his world view in his actions. If one believes the universe is a random, cold, uncaring place whose origin is simply accidental then ones value system grows from that belief. I hardly think this one individual was motivated by corporate greed given the circumstances and money involved. He was simply cold and uncaring. He was able to wittiness this young lady lying on the floor gasping for breath knowing he was able to assist her but he simply lacked compassion for her condition. This is the world we have made.
I recently heard someone suggest that empathy is “not productive.”
(Whoopi Goldberg has a new book titled: “Is it Just Me?” about the loss of civility in society. Willie Geist’s recent book is titled, “American Freak Show.” (I haven’t read either one, so these aren’t recommendations, but this story and some of the comments brought them to mind.))
Just as suspected. These new young folk are aliens — they look like humans but are droids from the planet “Goldilocks” — no conscience and no human compassion — that’s why they act like they do — (theory for my new book, LOL – I had to give them some reason for acting so rude and stupid all the time!)
Bonnie wrote: “This country is going to lose its soul over issues such as these.”
From where I’m sitting, it already has…
the fun part is not having used the inhaler in your pocket for some time, then using it, finding out it’s full of pocket lint.
If I had been a clerk or other customer in CVS, I would have paid the dollar with not expectation to be paid back. I will go further than the person above who called us “the money obsessed country. This country is going to lose its soul over issues such as these.
As someone who is asthmatic, I will note that it’s easy to pickup an inhaler, and when you try to use it, realize that it’s empty. In fact, it’s ALWAYS when it’s most inconvenient that you end up with an empty one.
One who knows how to show and to accept kindness will be a friend better than any possession. – Sophocles
“She’s had daily asthma attacks for days. Why leave the house w/o an inhaler?”
Maybe she didn’t have one in the house. But I have a different chronic health problem and according to your logic I shouldn’t leave the house at all.
“She and her boyfriend were walking back from McDonalds. Together, they had no credit card, no debit card, and one $20 bill constituting all of their cash. What did they buy at McDonalds and how did they pay for it to end up in that situation?”
They bought crappy food for their cash in excess of $20.
“No one called for a manager.”
They were talking to the pharmacist on duty.
“No one offered up the additional $1 and change. None of the bystanders or other staff did anything whatsoever.”
How do you even know there were bystanders at all besides the boyfriend and the pharmacist? Are you referring to the people in line behind them for 75 pounds of pseudoephedrine? Federal law dictates that they have to stand outside earshot.
“The woman entered and left the store on her own power.”
She was on the floor wheezing. I think the boyfriend may have helped her.
“As far as anyone inside the store knew, she left fine. (The friend who brought her his inhaler did so outside the store.)”
She was presumably on the ground outside also before their paramedic friend showed up. You’re obviously transferring responsibility for this off the pharmacist and onto whoever happens to be in CVS at the same time. Maybe whoever happens to walk past her outside as well. All I can say is none of my friends are paramedics.
“It’s easy to see this as ‘couple comes into CVS to scam a free/cheap inhaler’, especially from the point of view of the pharmacist. And that may actually be the case.”
It may be easy for a cashier in general to see that, but this guy was the pharmacist on duty, and pharmacists have to go to pharmacy college and get a specialized PharmD degree. I knew someone who was getting one. They do teach you that stuff like this is unethical and will cost you your license.
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