CVS fires pharmacist who denied hormone prescription to transgender woman

24 July, 2018, 21:44 | Author: Angelica Greene
  • Hilde Hall

A transgender woman in Arizona was refused her hormone treatment medication by a CVS pharmacist.

Hall then transferred all of her prescriptions to that Walgreens "so that I never again have to see the pharmacist who discriminated against me", she wrote.

Although Hall acknowledged that CVS had received a ideal score from the Human Rights Campaign for its policies related to LGBTQ equality ― a fact also touted in the company's statementshe said "measures should be in place to ensure no other customer is humiliated like I was".

Hall said she was mortified and distressed, adding that the pharmacist wouldn't hand the prescription note back to her so she could take it to another drugstore.

Hall added that the experience left him feeling "embarrassed and stressed" to the point where he nearly broke down crying in the store.

"I was finally going to start seeing my body reflect my gender identity and the woman I've always known myself to be", Hill wrote. After filling the prescription at Walgreens without trouble, Hall said she called CVS' corporate phone line multiple times to complain, but that no one addressed her concerns.

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CVS apologized in a statement given to CNN.

Hilde Hall, who detailed the incident in a blog post published on ACLU's website on Thursday, said she was elated after she received her first prescription for hormone therapy from the doctor. The company said the employee had been fired, but did not disclose if it happened immediately or after media reports on the incident.

In a statement, CVS said the pharmacist "violated company policies and is no longer employed" with the company.

CVS said the employee was sacked, and added it had not responded to Hall's complaints because of "an unintentional oversight". So, she chose to file a complaint to the Arizona State Board of Pharmacy on Thursday, insisting something had to be done.

"Measures should be in place to ensure no other customer is humiliated like I was", she said.

The pharmacist violated company policies against denying patients access to medication prescribed by a physician based on a pharmacist's individual religious or moral beliefs, CVS Health spokesman Mike DeAngelis said Sunday.

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Arizona is one of six states that allows pharmacies and pharmacists to refuse to fill a prescription on religious or moral grounds.

According to the ACLU, Hall said Friday that she had spoken with a CVS representative, who also apologized on behalf of the company, and appreciated the company for taking "her experience seriously".

The pharmacist refused to fill one of the subscriptions, Hall wrote.

"I felt like the pharmacist was trying to out me as transgender in front of strangers", Hall wrote. She was able to fill the prescription at Walgreen's with no problem, she said.

Hall said she hopes CVS also will take action and apologize for the way she was treated.

Through training and written policies, the company needs to make it clear to their employees - especially their pharmacists - that transgender customers deserve respect.

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