ReadersMagnet Author of the Week Mr. Fritz Scheffel

by | Sep 14, 2020 | Author of the week | 2 comments


My name is Fritz Scheffel.  I graduated from The University of Texas in 1959 with a degree in Pharmacy.  Actually, I graduated in May of that year, but could not work in pharmacy as a registered pharmacist until my State Board exam was graded, expected about August.


At this point in our country’s history, we were engaged in the Korean War, and I had a military obligation until my 28th birthday.  Because I wanted to go to college when I graduated High School, I entered the National Guard and attended regular weekly meetings.  I took advantage of the Guard and finished college, then went right to Officer Candidate School to become an Officer in the Guard.  I mention this because OCS helped me grow up as a man, and taught me to be a leader of men.  Within in one year the Senior Officers wanted to elevate me to the position of Company Commander, which also promoted me to the rank of Capitan in a very fast two-year period.  The nice part was, that being as officer, I didn’t have to peel any more potatoes.


By this time, when I “retired” from the Guard, I was running my own retail pharmacy but in 1965 the government decided to initiate a health care welfare system for “the children.”  This was the beginning of the end for independently owned pharmacies, and in 1980 I threw in the towel, sold my legend drug inventory to a chain pharmacy, and worked a few years as a relief pharmacist.  About 1983, I was introduced to a pharmacy computer company, and they offered me a position selling their system.  This gave me a job within my avocation of pharmacy, but I didn’t know anything about computers, but no registered pharmacist was employed by this computer company, so I was useful to them.


With the pharmacy computer company, besides having a territory, they enlisted my help to redesign their pharmacy system.  NOTE:  At this point in time “pharmacy computers” were not a “must need” item to run a pharmacy.  As it turned out, I was the No. 1 salesman with the company because I figured out an average size pharmacy would increase their profitability, even spending $30,000 for a computer system.  $30,000 was an exorbitant expenditure for a pharmacy at that time.  Making a long story short, I eventually managed sales for half of the United States for a pharmacy computer company.  My job entailed “giving” a system to Schools of Pharmacy up a down the Eastern U.S. to create awareness of our system, and the business advantage of computerization.

I gained a wealth of experience calling on all kinds of pharmacies, such as retail (large and small), hospitals (large and small), University Pharmacies such as Rutgers, University of Florida and Mississippi State and more.  I also visited clinic pharmacies, research pharmacies and more, but I never had the chance to visit a mail-order pharmacy.


After gaining all of this experience in pharmacy, I spent a few years trying other jobs and opportunities.  One day I was mindlessly driving somewhere and happened to think back to my college days, when I remembered a college course, “Report Writing for Science Majors,” a required course for my field of study.  In this case, I pick an antibiotic called “chloromycetin” to write a report about as a semester-long project.  Thinking of this class brought up the thought of writing a book about Health Care, the problem was, I knew nothing about writing a book.  I found an experience person, and we met over coffee.  She got me started putting words on paper, and my first book was born.  After the book was finished, I faced other problems, such as proofing, printing, cover design, title and other challenges.  Then I discovered this whole project was going to cost me some money, which I did not have.  I found enough money to get the book printed, but I would receive no help sell the book, or proofing the book, or any other help.


I was determined to improve my first book, so I began writing a second book which turned out better with increased volume and topics.  I gave a publishing company some money I had save up and thought a better experience was going to happen.  They turned out to be dishonest when they kept wanting more money for work, I was doing.  To make things worse, during this process I suffered two strokes, which I write about in my current book.  At age 83, this will probably be my last book because it’s too hard writing (typing) with one hand.  I am determined to get this book out because, I am probably be the last person still alive with the experience to write about Health Care as it was when the patient/doctor relationship was paramount.  I consider this book to be a historical record of Health Care, and I want my great-grandchildren to enjoy good health, and to know the truth if things are not as they should be.  God Bless all of you!      




  1. Jerry Brown

    Great retrospective, Fritz. I am just beginning my first book at age 76. Your example is encouraging.

    • Fritz Scheffel

      Jerry, thank you for staying in touch, and good luck on the book. What are you writing about?


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