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Intern before starting pharmacy school?

Discussion in 'Pharmacy' started by dinu, Mar 21, 2007.

  1. dinu

    dinu Junior Member
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    Hi,
    I am joining USN in the fall. I am planning on moving to Henderson in end of May. Is it possible for me find a position as an intern in the summer? Or should I apply for the pharmacy technician license until I start school? I already have the california license. How long does the tech license process take? I would like to know that, so I can apply early and find a position soon once I get there.Can someone already attending USN explain me the options please. Thanks in advance.:)
     
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  3. Jespere

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    I'm also starting this fall and interested in internship...i'm right now working as a tech but I was wondering is there any really big difference whether they call you an intern or tech? do you really get better treatment as an intern? I know from personal experience that techs get stepped on all the time at my pharmacy (that's another story...hehehe)

    Any comments?
     
  4. gaba101

    gaba101 Doctor
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    not to be a b*tch or anything but why are so many pre-pharmacy students who are registered for the fall so anxious to intern during that inbetween summer, thinking they will have a better title than "techs"? Unless they've been with that company for a while before (i.e. as a tech), they don't know much and can't be of MORE help than they were before (i.e. if you were a tech before, you can't be anyMORE helpful than how you were helping before)...You know that mantra "an intern pharmacist can do anything a pharmacist does"--ONLY IF THEY'VE HAD *SOME* (even if it's just a month or two!) Pharmacy School Education. Without SOME pharmacy education, a pre-P1 "Intern pharmacist" is just like any regular tech...can't LEGALLY take prescriptions for the pharmacist, can't LEGALLY counsel, can't sign for drug orders (I guess this one depends on the store)...and if anyone says their pharmacist lets them do that even at a tech level or before p1 yr, it's because of one of the following reasons: (1) diff state w/ different laws (2) they are lying (3) the pharmacist is doing some shady business

    For the reasons I stated above, I believe this is why several (probably not all) pharmacy schools in the country do not sign the paperwork to allow their pre-P1s to start doing internships the summer before. THe purpose of those intern hours is to put your pharmacy education into use and to integrate it w/ real pharamcy work. If you've never had any pharmacy education in pharmacy school, it's pretty pointless.
     
  5. All4MyDaughter

    All4MyDaughter SDN Mommystrator
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    I'm not sure how you inferred all of that from the OP's post. I think it may just be that people are excited about pharmacy school and want to get started with some pharmacy experience over the summer.

    What the intern (at any stage) can do is more a function of their abilities and the pharmacist's trust in them. I started interning as soon as I got my acceptance (almost a year in advance) and it was a great learning experience.
     
  6. twester

    twester Senior Member
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    Whether or not someone can "intern" before pharmacy school depends on the state. Colorado doesn't license intern pharmacists until shortly before school starts. I could have gotten a tech job, though.
     
  7. Jbuprepharm

    Jbuprepharm The Poopsmith
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    in texas you have to complete 30 hours of pharmacy education before you can intern (i.e be a mini pharmacist) but you just have to have normal state and PTCB licensing to be a tech

    in other words, you can't intern until your first summer of pharmacy school
     
  8. gaba101

    gaba101 Doctor
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    Not from the OP's post but from the guy after him (Jespere):

    I could go on some more but I will leave it at here. And I'm glad you had a good learning experience. I just know that once I become a registered pharmacist, my license is on the line and I would not trust ANY pre-P1 intern Pharmacist any more than a tech--so they might as well work as a tech for me. My license will be on the line. :eek:
     
  9. piyi

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    At my pharmacy, the intern is exactly like the pharmacist except that they don't perform the final check of the drug and sign off on it. They counsel patients, take new prescriptions over the phone, copies... we refer patients' over the counter questions to them. I even call them the pharmacist, like when I tell the patient that the pharmacist here is going to counsel you, even when its the intern. I don't know if that's how it is at other pharmacies, but for all practical purposes, at my pharmacy (actually at all three pharmacies where I worked, both the ones in Nevada and in Indiana), intern=pharmacist.

    I've only encountered a couple situations where the techs were stepped on in the pharmacy and it was always by patients. The pharmacists/interns always treated me and the other technicians with respect.

    I'm also starting at USN in the fall and I'm kind of nervous going to a new store as an intern. I've always felt comfortable going to a new place as a techinican (I've worked at three different stores in my three year career as a tech); its going to be interesting to work at a store as an intern with that sort of perspective. I hope the people at my new store will be nice! So far I've been lucky to get two really good stores and one that at least I get along with everyone even though there's a lot of tension between other co-workers. I keep thinking I may run of of luck.
     
  10. piyi

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    That is true--it's the pharmacist's discretion as to how much responsibility they'll allow their interns. I guess all the pharmacist's I've worked with felt comfortable giving their interns that much responsibility. And I can see why many of them would not be comfortable with that, after all, their license is on the line! I've always been surprised which how much responsibility the interns at my store had.
     
  11. All4MyDaughter

    All4MyDaughter SDN Mommystrator
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    It is highly variable. I'm not saying that I walked into every pharmacy and was immediately given carte-blanche to act like a mini-pharmacist. More like, I worked side-by-side with different pharmacists and then each of them became more comfortable with me to the point of allowing me to do certain things. Right now I mostly float, so I'm usually not with anyone I really know. I'll introduce myself and ask the pharmacist what they expect of me. Most of the time, they want me to handle helping people with OTC. There is really no time built into Walgreens pharmacist workflow for that. And luckily, my school teaches OTC products intensively in the first year. So I get to practice my skills.
     
  12. sdn1977

    sdn1977 Senior Member
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    gaba - since you & I are both in CA, I can appreciate your sentiments. I also would not let a brand new intern do anything more than a tech particularly since they've had no formal education, particularly in law.

    A little knowledge can be a dangerous thing & in our state, we don't allow this practice.

    But...the OP was asking about NV - good thing someone from NV came on to answer.

    But...gaba - a good lesson here - when you take a transfer from another state - be sure you know who you're talking to - if I know a state allows pre-pharms to be interns, I won't take a tx or give a tx unless I know the status of the person on the other end. Our state laws are a bit nebulous on this, but the ultimate documentation is up to us.

    Good luck!
     

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