Jacksonville Beach, Florida

I have been filling a prescription for a controlled substance through a Walgreens pharmacy for six months now. Each month the prescription has been filled 3-7 days early with no problem whatsoever.

Prior to this, the prescription had been filled at a CVS pharmacy for years. I changed pharmacies only because I moved. I have had the same doctor prescribing this for about five years now. I have never had a problem filling this prescription before this month.

I called Walgreens to have my prescription filled five days early. My insurance company already cleared that it would be covered. The pharmacy tech put it through and said it would be ready in about an hour. Two hours later I called the pharmacy as I still had not received a text message saying that it was ready.

I was then informed by the pharmacy tech that it could not be filled yet because it was five days too soon. I was told in order to have it filled sooner, my doctor's office would need to call and release the prescription early. I had my doctor's office call Walgreens to do so. Walgreens then sends my refill history and asks them if they were aware that I have been filling early.

My doctors office still wanted the prescription released and suggested that I have it filled weekly instead of monthly then. The pharmacist states that this would be inconvenient to me WITHOUT CONSULTING ME. It is four days early and I have yet to have my prescription filled. Today I called the Walgreens pharmacy to ask that the prescription be filled tomorrow on the 30th day.

I explained my confusion and frustration regarding that inconsistency and she hung up on me. I was not expletive or yelling. After this I finally called the corporate Walgreens office and filed a formal complaint. My complaint was documented and I was assured someone will call me back within two business days.

Why is this a problem? Because this "controlled substance" is a medication I cannot just be off of for 5 days and not have consequences. This controlled substance comes with a dependence on the medication which does not make me a criminal of a druggie. This is a prescription from a reputable doctor that I need.

I don't feel that Walgreens should have exhibited this type of control over medication out of the blue. If it was fine for the past six months to fill early, why isn't it now? I should have been told that filling early was an "exception" they were making.

Because of their inconsistency I have been hospitalized for withdrawal side effects and have missed work. This is unacceptable.

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Under certain state laws a prescription for narcotic medication CANNOT be filled until the due date. You even though they will not inform you, you can be red flagged. TN if you have been written controlled substances or been seen by 3 different providers in 90 days or less even if its from the same office / clinic their Drug Database red flaggs you.


Experiencing Walgreen's so called policies of not being able to refill diazepam after 28-30 days. Their policy is that it cannot be refilled on the day it was dispensed but the day it was picked up from the store.

How is that right?!

Makes no sense to me. Please explain or if they can even do that.


That's actually by order of the DEA, NOT Walgreens doing


Um, if you pick it up today, then you will have a full 30-day supply and will not NEED to refill it earlier. Unless of course you are taking more than the prescribed dose like many abusers and "early refillers" do ...


It's not the NEED to pick it up earlier because one is taking more than is prescribed. It's the need to pick it up earlier due to more than one valid reason.

1) The pharmacy may not even have the medicine in stock, so when the patient (for that is what they are; not just a customer) comes on the 31st day (the 1st day of the next 30, for that is what they are doing now) there is none to be had; the patient is then left with no medicine, which then becomes more than just a problem. When one suffering from the disease of chronic pain, it's more than hard to run around trying to find another pharmacy in the hopes they will have it in stock, especially if someone is driving you for that express purpose. This is the reason that pharmacies and insurance companies have always let people refill on the 28th day. So this is less likely to happen.

Walgreen's wouldn't want to see people run out of their blood pressure medications would they? 2)It's more productive for the patient to get their medicine on the 28th day. This way the patient can put 2 days worth aside every month (as one should do for all their medicines, not just the controlled ones) in the event that the pharmacy does run out. The patient has a back up supply in case that or other possibilities happens.

For instance their doctor is not in because he was called away because of an emergency at the last minute. Or a hurricane is on the way, as in the case of Katrina, which happened here in New Orleans where many patients were out of their medicines for days to weeks. Anything could happen. That is why a patient should be able to fill or refill their prescriptions every 28th day as most insurance companies permit.

They do not want patients to run out of prescribed, needed medicine. Not because they really care about the patients health; more because if someone runs out of their medicine because of their policy, it could open them up to a lawsuit if someone were hurt because of that.


Ummm...the original poster has been getting it filled 5-6 days early for the last 5 months or whatever, so the fact that they were hospitalized due to withdrawal means they’ve been taking more than they’re supposed to!




Walgreens did same to me waited 30 days from date on bottle but because last month I picked it up 2 days later they bumped the it to 2 days later. Which makes me get it every 32 days instead of 30 Their pharmacist SAYS ITS THE PICKUP Date!

No matter how I try to tell them I take one every day for 30 days. Insane.


If you take a benzodiazepine daily, you’re physically accustomed to taking it every day. Physical withdrawal is no joke, especially when you have epilepsy.

I’ve had countless small seizures and 3 grand mal seizures in 7 years - 2 were because a doctor, under pressure from the government or pressure from the HMO, was afraid to prescribe the necessary amount of medication. Why do we blame this on the patient? Maybe it’s not Walgreens’ fault. I’ve had CVS say the same thing - they *sometimes* can’t refill a benzodiazepine until the 30th day.

Refilling on Day 30 is cutting it close. If you’re afraid of having a seizure, it’s scary to wait. What if you have to travel and aren’t in town on Day 30?

They never fail to refill my heart medication by Day 27. The problem is this 30th day policy seems to be applied inconsistently.


Did same to me. That is wrong.




When I was living at the Covenant House California, my case manager Tim Welch asked me what the state abbreviation for Louisiana was. I answered "LA" and he went "Oh, Really!" like he thought that was cool and that it surprised him. I think that the state abbreviation for Louisiana being the same as the abbreviation for the City of Angels is Awesome!


I totally am in the same boat .. literally as I type.

Today is day 30 for me and the new Walgreens pharmacist will NOT fill it today because it is due tomorrow. I specifically told Dr I needed to pick it up today and she knows I do not abuse this med. She of course didn't put it on the escript to be filled today ... Either forgot or didn't see it being an issue.

Dr is impossible to get ahold of and pharmacist is a b****! I am so pissed and inconvenienced . Ive have never experienced such stubborn robotic behavior.

Bye bye Walgreens. Rude


I have rx pain meds as well. I cannot full them even one day early.

If the controlled script says the 25th of December and they are closed, I have to wait until the day after. It's unfortunate for you but your medication should last 30 days.

Maybe get a 5 day script from the Dr. The pharmacy would have to fill it.


I fill several C2 pain rx's every month and avoid Walgreens like the plague. HOWEVER, why is your (I presume) 30 day rx only lasting you 24 days?

Since you have a history for years as you said of filling this medication five or 6 days early then doesn't that mean you are over taking your medication? If that is the case then the pharmacist is correct in delaying your fill until the day that it would actually be due. If your doctor writes 60 tabs of medicine x to be taken twice daily for 30 days, and you are out of meds on day 24, that equals 12 doses you've taken early (6 days x 2 tabs/day). That would mean you're taking 20% more medication than you are prescribed.

Being a pain patient I know this is a very black and white way of looking at the situation (you may be taking a benzo, stimulant or other controlled substance, I can only speak for my experience with pain medication rx's). If your current dose isn't working for you discuss with your provider that maybe you need an increase in your daily dose to meet your need. Maybe you need, in this example, a 20% increase in your daily dose.

However, as annoying as it can be this example doesn't seem like the pharmacist at Walgreen's did anything incorrectly. They have to cover their butts too.


I totally agree with you. I study pharmacy and work as an intern.

No pharmacist would ever want to deal with DEA agents fining them and jeopardize their pharmacist license which they sacrificed their whole life studying for and spent $200k for their school just to fill a controlled prescription early because someone is overusing their medication. Not to mention the pressure they’ll receive from their employer if they make a minor mistake when it comes to controlled medications even Schedule 5. The pharmacists who have been filling it early for you have been doing wrong.

I understand that your frustration but you can’t expect them to do something against the law. And yes it is against the law to fill controlled medication early


No it's not illegal to find early, not in NY. NY public health law Section 3339 states 3.

Unless an earlier refilling is authorized by the prescriber, no prescription for a controlled substance may be refilled earlier than seven days prior to the date the previously dispensed supply would be exhausted if used in conformity with the directions for use. LETS ALL READ THE 7 DAY IN THAT LAW


If someone is filling their medications "5 or 6 days early for YEARS" then theoretically they should have accrued several MONTHS worth of additional medication over time, which would make their complaint now completely irrelevant as there should be absolutely NO reason they are "completely out" unless they are a complete and total pill head.




Ya Walgreens is a joke. If you have the script you should be able to fill it.

All this controlled substance timeline is bs.

It's none of anyone's biz except you and the doctor and if the doctor wrote the script they should fill it. You know why they get away with this *** Because we're a nation of *** You think our grandparents or there parents would put up with this *** I don't think so.