Why I Do What I Do
I have been blessed to have worked for a retail chain for more than 15 years. I have helped many through some very tough times in their lives and shared in some of their most joyous moments as well. I have been an advocate for my patients through cancer, addiction, and many other difficult disease states. About 4 years ago, I transitioned to working at a hospital. At first I missed the personal interaction and immediate gratification of helping patients, but I quickly fell in love with the change of pace and opportunity for learning. I soon became Lead Technician and was able to help implement and maintain many programs and procedures for increased patient safety. Helping a patient in the long-term acute setting where their life is literally dependent on the medications we are providing is a phenomenal feeling.
A co-worker had been teaching for more than 10 years and lit a new flame in my heart. She invited me to sit in on an aseptic technique and sterile compounding class. I fell in love with helping future pharmacy technicians grasp the concepts and importance of all that we do and our ever-growing role in the healthcare system. My co-worker and I have since become co-directors of the program and strive to give our students the best hands-on training possible. Our curriculum consists not only of learning about pharmacy technician roles and duties but emulating them in the most realistic setting possible. We have a realistic retail and hospital lab and have the students type up prescriptions while being timed and customers yelling at them. They also make non-sterile and sterile compounds in fully functioning IV hoods. The ability to pass on the knowledge and skill and to be able to assist the next generation of phenomenal pharmacy technicians is the greatest feeling ever. I do all that I do overall to help people. The ability to save a patient’s life is one of the greatest rewards, and to be able to make a difference in the lives of our students and train them to provide superior patient care are phenomenal accomplishments.
California North State College of Pharmacy recently awarded me with the Distinguished Technician Award.
Most Memorable Experience as a Pharmacy Technician
While doing my routine audit of daily Pyxis discrepancies, I noted a discrepancy on warfarin — 4 tablets were missing. I immediately called the nurse who had created the discrepancy and he verified that he had taken out 5 tablets because that's what the patient had the day before. My response was, "Wow, 5 of the 5-mg tablets for a total of 25 mg is way too much!" The nurse’s response was, “5-mg tablets? No, they were the 1 mg." At that point, he and I both knew that something was terribly wrong. I immediately told my pharmacist. Upon seeing that the patient's INR had risen drastically, we were able to get an order for injectable vitamin K, thus avoiding a major bleed risk and saving the patient’s life.
Why I Became Certified
I am an advocate for continuing education.
My Passion Outside of Work
If you love what you do, you never work a day in your life. I am blessed to love all of my jobs and roles. I also love my super supportive husband and son. I do my best to enjoy as much time with them. We love to be in nature, and we enjoy nature walks, boating, and fishing.
Latest Book Read
Wired That Way: The Comprehensive Personality Plan by Marita Littauer.
Advice to Up-and-Coming Technicians
Keep striving for success and never settle; continue to learn and grow.