Disaster Averted – The Life of a Hotel Doctor

“We have a situation with a guest…” explained the manager of the Georgian.

I love doing favors for hotel management, but this announcement did not seem promising. Medical science cannot calm drunk, stoned, or disruptive guests, but hope springs eternal among hotel staff.

This turned out to be not so bad. A guest was taking an injectable medicine for rheumatoid arthritis. It required refrigeration, and the hotel had agreed to store it. Unfortunately, for unclear reasons, someone had left it on top of the refrigerator all night. What should he tell the guest? Could I call a pharmacy to replace it?

The medicine was Humira, a high-tech, genetically engineered monoclonal antibody. The internet pharmaceutical supplier that I patronize would sell me two doses for $7,000.

I did a Google search to find the manufacturer’s medication guide. While Humira should be kept in cold storage, leaving it at room temperature for a few days is OK. You can bet the manager was grateful for this news.



By Mike Oppenheim