Is it worth it to earn ptcb certification if I know I will be a P1 coming fall.

Jan 1, 2014
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NJ
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Pharmacy Student
Ok here is my situation.

I will be a P1 this coming august 2014. So, before the school starts, do you think it is worth getting ptcb certification and start working as a pharm tech?

I know i could get intern license once I start p1 and an intern gets higher pay than a tech.

Do you think there is any advantage (academics, experience etc) in getting the certification at this point?

Thanks
 

pharmerjohn

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May 29, 2012
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It depends on what you plan to do with your tech license. If you're just planning to work a few hours a month, then it's probably not worth it. However, if you plan to work 30+ hrs/week (full-time), then it probably is worth your while to take the PTCB exam. The reason is because you may not be able to get as many hours as an intern as you would a tech. I've seen many pharmacy students work as techs while in pharmacy school, and I intend to do the same as well.
 
OP
Yaksa
Jan 1, 2014
36
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NJ
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Pharmacy Student
It depends on what you plan to do with your tech license. If you're just planning to work a few hours a month, then it's probably not worth it. However, if you plan to work 30+ hrs/week (full-time), then it probably is worth your while to take the PTCB exam. The reason is because you may not be able to get as many hours as an intern as you would a tech. I've seen many pharmacy students work as techs while in pharmacy school, and I intend to do the same as well.
So, there is no reason to get certified for academics and experience right?
 

pharmerjohn

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May 29, 2012
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So, there is no reason to get certified for academics and experience right?
It's relative. If interning for a few hours a month is all the experience you feel you need, then no. On the other hand, if you'd like to immerse yourself and really get some hands-on, then it might be more beneficial to get certified. The exam is really a joke if that's what you're concerned about...
 
OP
Yaksa
Jan 1, 2014
36
1
NJ
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Pharmacy Student
It's relative. If interning for a few hours a month is all the experience you feel you need, then no. On the other hand, if you'd like to immerse yourself and really get some hands-on, then it might be more beneficial to get certified. The exam is really a joke if that's what you're concerned about...
Thank you very much!!
 

Rouelle

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Jan 7, 2011
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It depends on what you plan to do with your tech license. If you're just planning to work a few hours a month, then it's probably not worth it. However, if you plan to work 30+ hrs/week (full-time), then it probably is worth your while to take the PTCB exam. The reason is because you may not be able to get as many hours as an intern as you would a tech. I've seen many pharmacy students work as techs while in pharmacy school, and I intend to do the same as well.
In my state this practice is illegal. Once one obtains an intern license the tech license must be surrendered and an intern cannot work as a tech. The OP may wish to check local laws. Where I live, taking the ptcb test would be a waste of time at this stage.
 
Oct 14, 2013
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I was wondering,,, do you have to take a class to take pharm tech certification?
 

owlegrad

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In my state this practice is illegal. Once one obtains an intern license the tech license must be surrendered and an intern cannot work as a tech. The OP may wish to check local laws. Where I live, taking the ptcb test would be a waste of time at this stage.
Which state? I find it hard to believe. What can a technician do that an intern cannot?
 
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OP
Yaksa
Jan 1, 2014
36
1
NJ
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Pharmacy Student
In my state this practice is illegal. Once one obtains an intern license the tech license must be surrendered and an intern cannot work as a tech. The OP may wish to check local laws. Where I live, taking the ptcb test would be a waste of time at this stage.
thanks for sharing your knowledge!! :)
 

pharmerjohn

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May 29, 2012
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Which state? I find it hard to believe. What can a technician do that an intern cannot?
I'm curious to know as well... Also, who wants to hire an intern to do 30+ hrs when they can have a tech do the same job for less? Although some techs do get $17+/hr, it's generally cheaper to hire a tech from an operations standpoint.
 
Oct 14, 2013
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so basically I can just study for the certification and take them?
 

Rouelle

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Which state? I find it hard to believe. What can a technician do that an intern cannot?
There is actually a relatively simple explanation for this. An intern can actually do quite a bit more than a tech here. However, we have strict requirements with regard to supervision: Each pharmacist can supervise 2 techs, 1 intern, and an unlimited number of clerks. The law book was written with the fear that people would try to get around by these supervision requirements by having multiple interns working simultaneously in the capacities of "intern," "tech," and "clerk" shifts. Thus it is explicitly stated that interns/techs cannot work "clerk" shifts and interns cannot work "tech" shifts.

If you are indeed interested in knowing which state I'm in, send me a PM. Otherwise, I'll refrain from posting it here in order to maintain anonymity.
 

confettiflyer

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I'm curious to know as well... Also, who wants to hire an intern to do 30+ hrs when they can have a tech do the same job for less? Although some techs do get $17+/hr, it's generally cheaper to hire a tech from an operations standpoint.
Because interns are usually cheaper when you consider the costs of benefits for said technician (medical/dental/vision insurance, paid vacation and sick leave earnings, 401k/403b match, etc...). $17/hr for your intern is $17/hr, your technician that starts at $15/hr probably ends up costing you $25-$30/hr depending on their total compensation package.

Plus interns function as per-diem or temporary workers and are much easier to deal with from a budgetary perspective. PT and FT technicians require more red tape to hire and terminate.

A per-diem technician would be the cheapest out of them all, but even then, depending on your hospital's policies, not scheduling/terminating them may pose bigger issues than doing the same with an intern.

Also, some states have fixed ratios for technicians and most operations are already maxed out. Depending on your state, interns may not be subject to the same statutory limits.
 
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Chaajo

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If you are indeed interested in knowing which state I'm in, send me a PM. Otherwise, I'll refrain from posting it here in order to maintain anonymity.
Can you tell us which states out there don't allow interns to work as techs?
 

Chaajo

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I made a post here though it was incomplete and needed editing. Now it's gone. :/
Anyway...
If you are indeed interested in knowing which state I'm in, send me a PM. Otherwise, I'll refrain from posting it here in order to maintain anonymity.
You don't need to mention your state but I'm curious to know which states out there don't allow interns to work as techs. I mean if it's not only one state following that rule. Do you mind?
 

BidingMyTime

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Weird that any state wouldn't allow an intern to work as a tech. In IL, there is no "intern" designation (although some companies may use that designation in-house.) So, in IL, a pharmacy student working in a pharmacy would be required to have a technician license, and per IL law, get PTCB certified within 2 years of first getting their license. So, if you lived in IL, in most cases you absolutely would need to get your PTCB certification, in order to work as a technician (or do IL rotations) Since it seems like what will be best for you is going to vary depending on your state, OP, why don't you tell us what state you are in, so you can get better answers for your situation (or if you are hesitant about putting your state on a public board, you might be better off just asking some pharmacists or even someone at your school what they recommend.)
 

marscole

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Depends on the state law. If the state law said you need PTCB certified, then get yourself certified.

IMO, it will be helpful to you when you work PT during pharmacy school. Also, intern positions don't always available. So, you can get internal updates thru your store manager, district manager or hiring manager if they know any intern position will be available soon.

Good luck!!!
 

Chaajo

5+ Year Member
May 8, 2013
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Depends on the state law. If the state law said you need PTCB certified, then get yourself certified.

IMO, it will be helpful to you when you work PT during pharmacy school. Also, intern positions don't always available. So, you can get internal updates thru your store manager, district manager or hiring manager if they know any intern position will be available soon.

Good luck!!!
Most people in this forum talk about getting jobs and interning during school. So will it make any, and even the slightest, difference if I apply as a tech or clerk after graduating? Because most likely I'm graduating overseas.
I'm just assuming it would be a bad idea, while preparing for an equivalency exam(made for foreign pharm grads) and waiting for an intern position, that I just sit around without a job really. Finding a job, preferably in a pharmacy setting, is the first thing I want to do once I return to the states.
 

Chaajo

5+ Year Member
May 8, 2013
20
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Weird that any state wouldn't allow an intern to work as a tech. In IL, there is no "intern" designation (although some companies may use that designation in-house.) So, in IL, a pharmacy student working in a pharmacy would be required to have a technician license, and per IL law, get PTCB certified within 2 years of first getting their license. So, if you lived in IL, in most cases you absolutely would need to get your PTCB certification, in order to work as a technician (or do IL rotations) Since it seems like what will be best for you is going to vary depending on your state, OP, why don't you tell us what state you are in, so you can get better answers for your situation (or if you are hesitant about putting your state on a public board, you might be better off just asking some pharmacists or even someone at your school what they recommend.)
Found a link: http://www.pharmace.com/state-by-state-requirements-to-become-a-pharmacy-technician.html
And another one: http://www.v-tecs.org/state-by-state-pharmacy-technicians-requirements.htm