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Pharmacy Technician Update – The Future of our Profession

Pharmacy Technician Future 2020

We are covering discounts, PTCB Proposed Changes (CREST), and how to make the most out of our role as a pharmacy technician.

Prescription MedicationFirst, subscribers of the blog should have received an email on discounts for Pharmacy Technician’s Letter and Pharmacy Technician University. If yo missed it, then sign up for the newsletter or you can go to the information page that provides more information at: Pharmacy Technician Letter & University page. The folks at Therapeutic Research Center are extending our subscribers and community some steep discounts on their monthly Pharmacy Technician’s Letter (which includes lots of live CE) and their new pharmacy technician training program.

Second, the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB) is proposing some major changes in the upcoming years. In a recent article written in the American Journal of Health-System Pharmacy (AJHP) titled “PTCB plans major update to certification requirements,” I read about some pretty serious proposed changes coming up. The first is to require a criminal background check starting in 2014. The second is to require at least one (1) hour of the CE recertification requirements to be in Medication Safety and phase out the in-service CE education programs. This means all 20 CE credits will need to be actual CE type of credits. The CE changes are proposed for 2014 for the med safety add and 2016 for the removal of in-service CE. Finally, and the biggest change proposed is to require that you must complete an ASHP accredited pharmacy technician training program to sit for the PTCB exam. This massive change if approved will take place in 2020 (seven years away). The comment period on these changes ends at the end of this month (May 2013). You can comment here. These changes are all part of the CREST initiative, and you can read more about this here. I have submitted my comments and I recommend you do the same. Don’t be a bystander in our profession, seriously contemplate the changes and have a voice and share what you think. I will not share my comments, as I do not want to bias anyone here. I will say that I am not in full agreement with all the changes and commented on what I agreed with and wrote a short description of why I disagreed in one or more other changes.

Third, Purpose, Worthwhile Work, and Making a Difference. I want to end with this, and I think it is as important as the PTCB changes, if not more important. Do you know how important it is to be a pharmacy technician? If not, let me just say that it is important! You take care of patients in their most vulnerable state. Our patients rely on you to provide them the right medication, at the right time, in the right form so that they can become better or stay healthier. Our patients do not know what we know about their medications and how important it is, but we can help them know. We have Purpose, and that is to meet our patient’s expectations to safely deliver their medication and do so in a kind compassionate way. Worthwhile Work, it can be too easy to feel weighed down by the day-to-day monotony of work, but our compassionate service as we serve our patients may be the last step of their day filled with doctor visits, X-rays, labs, and long waits; we can end it on a high note. I believe that patients need to feel compassion and kindness to get better, we can do that, and this is worthwhile to our patients. Making a Difference, we can all make a difference everyday we come to work in the pharmacy. It should be our goal everyday to make a difference in as many of our patient’s lives as we can. If you work in a hospital and interact more with nurses or other staff, then make a difference in their lives, it will be passed on. It could be a kind word, a smile, a hello, or going the extra mile to exceed someone’s expectations. I share this with you because it is so important that you know that we are in the business of healing people, and healing is more that just getting medications to patients. We are part of a team that needs us to play our part in every way. I have shared with you some ways we can play this part to the best of our abilities. Thank about what you can do and how you can find your Purpose, Worthwhile work, and Making a Difference.