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rollingmedicine

Nuclear or Clinical
7+ Year Member
Mar 31, 2013
29
1
176
  1. Pharmacy Student
Hello everyone!

I hope you guys are all doing well during crazy situations and things have been alright.
I was at a loss for a few weeks and after trying to get it figured out on my own, I thought I should see if anyone can help me with my issue here.

Currently, I am in my fourth year doing APPE rotation. Now, nuclear pharmacy is something that I always wanted to do even during my pre-pharmacy days. I did my research, went to meetings talking about nuclear pharmacy, and as a pharmacy student, I took nuclear pharmacy elective courses which even got me more fired up.

Sadly, my APPE nuclear pharmacy rotation got canceled because of the pandemic and my nuclear pharmacy elective got switched to a community pharmacy.

Are there any nuclear pharmacists here or any other pharmacy students looking into nuclear pharmacy who can help me out as to what I'm supposed to do from here? I still want to become a nuclear pharmacist but I just don't know where to start at this point since it looks like the APPE opportunity that I had a lot of my interest got taken away due to the current situation.

I am currently working at a big retail pharmacy and I've been with them for 5 years so far but I really do not want to give up my nuclear pharmacy career dream. Any helpful advise or anything that I could be doing during my APPE off blocks?

Thank you so much in an advance. And for reference, I am currently in CA!
 
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Marzapan

Full Member
10+ Year Member
Dec 27, 2009
439
612
266
  1. Pre-Pharmacy
  2. Pharmacist
For someone so gung-ho about nuclear pharmacy, you should have worked in one - that's the most important missing link in all of this. Going to conferences and taking classes are meaningless because this isn't considered "experience."
 
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rollingmedicine

Nuclear or Clinical
7+ Year Member
Mar 31, 2013
29
1
176
  1. Pharmacy Student
For someone so gung-ho about nuclear pharmacy, you should have worked in one - that's the most important missing link in all of this. Going to conferences and taking classes are meaningless because this isn't considered "experience."


Hello!

So I have tried to work in nuclear pharmacy around my area by sending e-mails and even calling them. Unfortunately, many replies I received were:
* They are currently not looking for hire
* Do not allow even shadowing/volunteering because the area itself is so restricted
* Only allow residents who are currently doing their rotation for nuclear medicine/radiology
* I even asked my nuclear pharmacy professor if it is possible to somehow get work experience there and was told it is not allowed and it is only for APPE student.

And yes, I completely understand what you mean by needing experience. I just wish working in the nuclear pharmacy is as easy in terms of going through the process as retail or clinical since I was able to get working experience in those areas already.
 
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Marzapan

Full Member
10+ Year Member
Dec 27, 2009
439
612
266
  1. Pre-Pharmacy
  2. Pharmacist
I would honestly just go for residency at this point if I were you... it keeps the doors "more open" compared to if you pigeon-holed yourself into a niche right away (especially since they're not hiring anyways).

Employers these days are looking for candidates with experience, so as a new grad you have nothing to offer to an employer. As a resident you can at least make an argument that you have work/leadership experience, even if it's not necessarily nuclear pharmacy-related.
 
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D

deleted562805

Hello!

So I have tried to work in nuclear pharmacy around my area by sending e-mails and even calling them. Unfortunately, many replies I received were:
* They are currently not looking for hire
* Do not allow even shadowing/volunteering because the area itself is so restricted
* Only allow residents who are currently doing their rotation for nuclear medicine/radiology
* I even asked my nuclear pharmacy professor if it is possible to somehow get work experience there and was told it is not allowed and it is only for APPE student.

And yes, I completely understand what you mean by needing experience. I just wish working in the nuclear pharmacy is as easy in terms of going through the process as retail or clinical since I was able to get working experience in those areas already.
Apply for residencies that offer nuclear pharmacy experience.
 

Znetium

New Member
Jun 20, 2020
2
2
1
  1. Pharmacist
Hello everyone!

I hope you guys are all doing well during crazy situations and things have been alright.
I was at a loss for a few weeks and after trying to get it figured out on my own, I thought I should see if anyone can help me with my issue here.

Currently, I am in my fourth year doing APPE rotation. Now, nuclear pharmacy is something that I always wanted to do even during my pre-pharmacy days. I did my research, went to meetings talking about nuclear pharmacy, and as a pharmacy student, I took nuclear pharmacy elective courses which even got me more fired up.

Sadly, my APPE nuclear pharmacy rotation got canceled because of the pandemic and my nuclear pharmacy elective got switched to a community pharmacy.

Are there any nuclear pharmacists here or any other pharmacy students looking into nuclear pharmacy who can help me out as to what I'm supposed to do from here? I still want to become a nuclear pharmacist but I just don't know where to start at this point since it looks like the APPE opportunity that I had a lot of my interest got taken away due to the current situation.

I am currently working at a big retail pharmacy and I've been with them for 5 years so far but I really do not want to give up my nuclear pharmacy career dream. Any helpful advise or anything that I could be doing during my APPE off blocks?

Thank you so much in an advance. And for reference, I am currently in CA!

Hello I'm a nuclear pharmacist and would be happy to answer any questions you have. First off my background I'm a 2020 grad and just started right out of school and so did one of my classmates. My school was one of the few that has a nuclear program.

So yes you are correct it is very uncommon to find someone that has worked in nuclear. Interns do exist but they are extremally rare so I do understand the limited experience, but you need to at a minimum tour a nuclear pharmacy. Nuclear is a very specialized area in pharmacy and I will tell you what my program told us day one you will have to move. You always find a couple of people that that did not have to but 95% did, and this is because there are very few jobs at a given time normally 2-8 in the entire country. Also you need to be ok with working nights due to the nature of the job most of the work is done at night due to the radioactive decay, but most pharmacist rotate so you only do the night shift 1 or 2 weeks a month. If you want to be in nuclear this is something that you will need to think about.

Training. So nuclear has nothing to do with residency and to my knowledge anything that is called nuclear in residency will probably be on the radiology team but this has nothing to do with true nuclear pharmacy (using a generator and compounding drugs with radioactivity). Our certification is authorized user this is a minimum of 700hrs of training divided into two sections didactic training 200hrs and supervised experience 500hrs. So when I was in school I did the 200hrs of didactic training and on my 4th year of school I did 3 rotations to get the 500hrs of experience. Unfortunately this is the hard part because if you do get a rotation in a nuclear pharmacy like you did those hrs. do count to your license but you will need two more rotations and so what me and my classmate had to do is we had to travel out of the state for each rotation, and that can get expensive because you need to pay for your own housing and travel. Now this is not saying if you don't have the certification you cant get a job in nuclear because just a couple of months ago the manager in Seattle was only hiring a new grad and did not care if they had AU certification. Most managers will only look at you if you are certified because then they have to pay to get you into a program also you cant fly solo until you are but sometimes you have a manager that does not care and is willing to get you the training. You can get the training yourself after you graduate but I believe it cost 10-15k.

So If I was you I would call the pharmacy you got dropped from and ask if you can still do a tour, and maybe this can open a door and they would be willing to take a student because most nuclear sites have started taking students again (we have one next month), but this has to do with the area you live. I would also ask your school if it is possible to do an out of state rotation again due to current situation maybe cant do this.

If you don't mind me asking what company was the rotation with?

Any other questions feel free to ask
 
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casprph

Full Member
May 17, 2020
68
45
46
Los Angeles
  1. Pharmacist
Hello everyone!

I hope you guys are all doing well during crazy situations and things have been alright.
I was at a loss for a few weeks and after trying to get it figured out on my own, I thought I should see if anyone can help me with my issue here.

Currently, I am in my fourth year doing APPE rotation. Now, nuclear pharmacy is something that I always wanted to do even during my pre-pharmacy days. I did my research, went to meetings talking about nuclear pharmacy, and as a pharmacy student, I took nuclear pharmacy elective courses which even got me more fired up.

Sadly, my APPE nuclear pharmacy rotation got canceled because of the pandemic and my nuclear pharmacy elective got switched to a community pharmacy.

Are there any nuclear pharmacists here or any other pharmacy students looking into nuclear pharmacy who can help me out as to what I'm supposed to do from here? I still want to become a nuclear pharmacist but I just don't know where to start at this point since it looks like the APPE opportunity that I had a lot of my interest got taken away due to the current situation.

I am currently working at a big retail pharmacy and I've been with them for 5 years so far but I really do not want to give up my nuclear pharmacy career dream. Any helpful advise or anything that I could be doing during my APPE off blocks?

Thank you so much in an advance. And for reference, I am currently in CA!

Pharmacist II, Nuclear Pharmacy Pharmacist II, Nuclear Pharmacy - Placentia, CA 92870 - Indeed.com
 
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Reactions: 1 user

rollingmedicine

Nuclear or Clinical
7+ Year Member
Mar 31, 2013
29
1
176
  1. Pharmacy Student
Hello I'm a nuclear pharmacist and would be happy to answer any questions you have. First off my background I'm a 2020 grad and just started right out of school and so did one of my classmates. My school was one of the few that has a nuclear program.

So yes you are correct it is very uncommon to find someone that has worked in nuclear. Interns do exist but they are extremally rare so I do understand the limited experience, but you need to at a minimum tour a nuclear pharmacy. Nuclear is a very specialized area in pharmacy and I will tell you what my program told us day one you will have to move. You always find a couple of people that that did not have to but 95% did, and this is because there are very few jobs at a given time normally 2-8 in the entire country. Also you need to be ok with working nights due to the nature of the job most of the work is done at night due to the radioactive decay, but most pharmacist rotate so you only do the night shift 1 or 2 weeks a month. If you want to be in nuclear this is something that you will need to think about.

Training. So nuclear has nothing to do with residency and to my knowledge anything that is called nuclear in residency will probably be on the radiology team but this has nothing to do with true nuclear pharmacy (using a generator and compounding drugs with radioactivity). Our certification is authorized user this is a minimum of 700hrs of training divided into two sections didactic training 200hrs and supervised experience 500hrs. So when I was in school I did the 200hrs of didactic training and on my 4th year of school I did 3 rotations to get the 500hrs of experience. Unfortunately this is the hard part because if you do get a rotation in a nuclear pharmacy like you did those hrs. do count to your license but you will need two more rotations and so what me and my classmate had to do is we had to travel out of the state for each rotation, and that can get expensive because you need to pay for your own housing and travel. Now this is not saying if you don't have the certification you cant get a job in nuclear because just a couple of months ago the manager in Seattle was only hiring a new grad and did not care if they had AU certification. Most managers will only look at you if you are certified because then they have to pay to get you into a program also you cant fly solo until you are but sometimes you have a manager that does not care and is willing to get you the training. You can get the training yourself after you graduate but I believe it cost 10-15k.

So If I was you I would call the pharmacy you got dropped from and ask if you can still do a tour, and maybe this can open a door and they would be willing to take a student because most nuclear sites have started taking students again (we have one next month), but this has to do with the area you live. I would also ask your school if it is possible to do an out of state rotation again due to current situation maybe cant do this.

If you don't mind me asking what company was the rotation with?

Any other questions feel free to ask

Thank you SO SO MUCH!
You have no idea how much your answer really helped me in terms of what I have been looking for. I currently attend Loma Linda pharmacy and I swear I am the only person who has a true interest in this field and it's so hard because I always felt like I had limited resources. I tried to look into organizations that gave more information and emailed faculties who work in nuclear pharmacies but it seems difficult to get a hold of them due to their busy schedules. And also congratulations!!!!! I wish I knew I wanted to go to nuclear pharmacy before I started pharmacy school because I would have selected schools that offered a lot of nuclear pharmacy programs.
And yes thank you for telling me about the residency part. When I did my research, even I was convinced that residency is different from nuclear pharmacy but hearing it from you gave me a relief that I did my research right!

For the working condition, I am completely okay with midnight, late shifts because I am already used to working late hours in a retail setting so I am good to go! And if moving is needed to somehow get those hours or have some hopes of getting closer to the career goal then I do not mind as well.

So I was supposed to do my nuclear pharmacy rotation at Loma Linda. I believe the company was called Jubliant Pharma! And I e-mailed the faculty last week, just explaining my situation and the passion I had ever since I took the course but did not receive a response yet. But after a week, I plan to email again with the tour opportunity that you mentioned. Is it okay if I keep in touch with you for information? Nuclear pharmacists are so hard to come by, feel like I struck a huge luck!
 

Znetium

New Member
Jun 20, 2020
2
2
1
  1. Pharmacist
Thank you SO SO MUCH!
You have no idea how much your answer really helped me in terms of what I have been looking for. I currently attend Loma Linda pharmacy and I swear I am the only person who has a true interest in this field and it's so hard because I always felt like I had limited resources. I tried to look into organizations that gave more information and emailed faculties who work in nuclear pharmacies but it seems difficult to get a hold of them due to their busy schedules. And also congratulations!!!!! I wish I knew I wanted to go to nuclear pharmacy before I started pharmacy school because I would have selected schools that offered a lot of nuclear pharmacy programs.
And yes thank you for telling me about the residency part. When I did my research, even I was convinced that residency is different from nuclear pharmacy but hearing it from you gave me a relief that I did my research right!

For the working condition, I am completely okay with midnight, late shifts because I am already used to working late hours in a retail setting so I am good to go! And if moving is needed to somehow get those hours or have some hopes of getting closer to the career goal then I do not mind as well.

So I was supposed to do my nuclear pharmacy rotation at Loma Linda. I believe the company was called Jubliant Pharma! And I e-mailed the faculty last week, just explaining my situation and the passion I had ever since I took the course but did not receive a response yet. But after a week, I plan to email again with the tour opportunity that you mentioned. Is it okay if I keep in touch with you for information? Nuclear pharmacists are so hard to come by, feel like I struck a huge luck!

Yes so that company was called triad and was purchased by Jubilant drax. So when it comes to nuclear you have three main players
cardinal health(my job), GE, and Jubilant/triad. So from what I have heard is Jubilant is not the most student friendly. I recommend you call Cardinal (one is in Colton Ca) and GE (one is in Anaheim). I believe these are the closest for you, but you can go on the company's websites and find the nuclear locations. Just give them a call and say you are a student and if you can do a tour (this is what I did in my P2 year). If you are lucky enough to get a tour then you will have better understanding of the job and maybe possible rotation site.

So I recommend try and get a tour with someone (due to the rona I have no idea if tours are still allowed), and somehow get at least one rotation then the hrs from that rotation will count toward your AU certification. When it comes to jobs I recommend applying 4months before graduation. Most sites when they post a position they need someone in that moment, but some sites are willing to hold out a month or two and bring someone in.

GET EXPERIENCE SOMEHOW. As stated above some managers are ok with no experience but most now say you must be AU certified or at lease be close. Until you have worked in this setting it is impossible to say you will enjoy or even truly understand the job, and that is going to be what most managers are thinking. Also from my understanding shadowing/volunteering in not allowed with anyone (I tried to do this my P2 year and got rejected also). So best bet is tour and rotations.

Sure you just message me on SDN or just ask in this forum if you have something that comes up.

I will say this I love nuclear and in my personal opinion I think it is one of the last gems in pharmacy because everything else is just a nightmare and going downhill, but at the same time I also had friends that said nuclear sounds cool and amazing, but once they tried it they decide to go the residency route. So I agree with what Marzapan said if for some reason with all the covid stuff you cant get a rotation make sure to "keep the doors open" and consider if it is a good idea for you to go into an extreme niche , but if you are able to get a rotation and see the job first hand and you still enjoy it then do it. Just my two cents.
 

casprph

Full Member
May 17, 2020
68
45
46
Los Angeles
  1. Pharmacist
Hello! Thank you so much! I plan to look into this later tonight.
Are you also a nuclear pharmacist working here?
Hi there, no I’m actually a specialty pharmacist working in a hospital but I check indeed regularly to see what the market is doing. I’ve been interested in nuclear pharmacy in the past but due to potential sterility issues that can occur in that field as well as in sterile oncology I have decided to stay away from such fields. Although I’m sure technology may have advanced in the last 7-8 years since I have been licensed
 
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