If you thought we were getting anywhere nearer to 100% equal rights between men and women, let this story out of Peoria, AZ set the record straight. We’re far from it and the path we’re currently spiraling down is a terrifying one for women.
Nicole Mone took to Facebook and Instagram on Friday to discuss an incident at a Walgreens in Peoria, AZ. She starts off talking about an earlier miscarriage and a second pregnancy that, unfortunately, was going to end in the same way.
The doctor gave her options, either undergo a dilation and curettage procedure or take a prescribed medication. As the D&C is known to be uncomfortable, she “opted for prescription.”
Unfortunately, when Mone went to pick up her prescription at the local Walgreens, she was met with conservative pharmacist, Brian Hreniuc, who was more inclined to stick to his ethical beliefs rather than consider the health of the woman standing in front of him.
As Mone explains:
“I get it we all have our beliefs. But what he failed to understand is this isn’t the situation I had hoped for, this isn’t something I wanted. This is something I have zero control over.”
And then she touches on the problem with conservative backlash against birth control, abortions, and, in Mone’s case, prescriptions to induce miscarriages:
“He has no idea what it’s like to want nothing more than to carry a child to full term and be unable to do so.”
In the end, Mone’s prescription was transferred to a Walgreens across town, but that doesn’t fix the humiliation and pain she felt after first being denied, as if her body wasn’t hers to control.
Mone doesn’t stand alone as people took to social media to show her support. One ER doctor even vowed never to use Walgreens to protect patients “from predatory pricing and ultra-conservative half-wits.”
I will NEVER transmit a fax or e-script to a Walgreens again. I have a moral obligation to protect my patients from predatory pricing, and ultra-conservative half-wits. https://t.co/J7OGQi7Euf
— DHozerMD (@dlindgrenmd) June 25, 2018
He’s not the only medical professional to be appalled by either Walgreens’ policy or how Hreniuc handled the situation.
As a pharmacist, nothing pisses me off more than when members of my profession abuse their right to refuse to fill. We have that power as a last line of defense against your doctor unintentionally killing you, not to impose our morality on our patients.
— josh T. (@dshwa76) June 23, 2018
@Walgreens As a medical professional, I find your employees actions appalling. His religious beliefs, however deeply felt, have nothing to do with his professional ethics or his legal responsibilities. He is meant to fill the order – full stop.
— Mary Kelly (@maryk931) June 23, 2018
I am a licensed pharmacist and I am appalled. I just sent a letter to Walgreens asking that they terminate his employment. I will also write to the AZ Board of Pharmacy stating my concerns.
— Jenny Chapin (@JenniferHarri15) June 24, 2018
Walgreens did eventually reach out to Mone and issued a statement, confirming that it does allow “pharmacists to step away from filling a prescription for which they have a moral object,” but also states that the pharmacist must “refer the prescription to another pharmacist or manage on duty.”
Our policy allows pharmacists to step away from filling a prescription for which they have a moral objection. At the same time, they are also required to refer the prescription to another pharmacist or manager on duty to meet the patient's needs in a timely manner.
— WAGSocialCare (@WAGSocialCare) June 23, 2018
We reached out to the patient over the weekend, apologizing for how the situation was handled. We will provide additional training to all of our pharmacists on appropriately handling these situations in accordance with our policy.
— WAGSocialCare (@WAGSocialCare) June 27, 2018
So, apparently, if my Christian pharmacist doesn't think I should be having sex or stopping the Lord's seed, he can deny me birth control.
Then, he & his pharma buddies can send me on a giant circle-jerk adventure to hunt down my 'script.
I USED Walgreens every day 'til now. https://t.co/8YPK3wsKZK
— Theresa Searcaigh (@TSearcaigh) June 25, 2018
@walgreens, women will gladly spend their money elsewhere. Just because it's legal doesn't mean it's right. Or good business.
I am so sorry you experienced this, Nicole Mone. The only way we're going to change things in this country is to get loud in public and VOTE.
— Jennifer Drayton (@DraytonJennifer) June 24, 2018
Way to go with these boilerplate responses! Why not offer something substantive on how you'll ensure that women facing a horrible day won't be judged and shamed by your employees? #shameonwalgreens #changeyourpolicy
— Shame on Walgreens (@ShameOnWalgreen) June 25, 2018