Ashworth College Blog

7 things every nurse understands

on Thursday, 28 January 2016. Posted in Healthcare

7 Things Every Nurse Understands

Shonda Rhimes knows how to write a good medical drama, but even the most dedicated Grey's Anatomy fan will never fully grasp what it's like to work in healthcare. Sure, the basic responsibilities of a nurse are understood. But as someone who has actually donned a pair of scrubs for multiple grueling 12-hour shifts, you know what the job really entails.

Here are seven things that only nurses will understand.

  1. The phrase T.G.I.F. means nothing to you

    Depending on where you work, you probably don't have a "normal" work schedule. Evening, weekend, and overnight shifts are often part of the job. You've mastered the art of resisting an eye roll whenever your friends who work from 9 to 5 complain about their busy week.

  2. (Almost) nothing grosses you out

    You might jump out of your seat a few times during a zombie thriller, but you won't flinch once during a gross-out scene. Blood, lesions, etc. You've seen the real stuff. Hollywood has nothing on the E.R.

  3. Family and friends treat you like a living WebMD

    Of course, you're happy to help, and your advice will be 100 percent more helpful than anything Google can provide. However, you'd be okay with it if your aunt avoided the urge to send you a picture of her rash.

  4. You know the true purpose of Vicks vapor rub

    It's great for treating coughs and congestion, but a couple of dabs inside of your medical mask can be a life-saver when you're dealing with the unpleasant smells that you encounter regularly on the job.

  5. Nursing friendships are a different kind of love

    No one understands you like the person next to you in the trenches. You've been through it all together—and nurses see some crazy stuff.

  6. You've experienced the amazing feeling of seeing a patient fully recover

    Working with sick and injured patients can be draining. But nothing beats the feeling of literally saving a life.

  7. You wouldn't change your job for the world

    Despite the ups and downs, the long shifts, and the stress of it all, you love what you do. Passion is the number one requirement for being a nurse.

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What Does a Pharmacy Technician Do?

Career Healthcare What Does a Pharmacy Technician Do?

If you’ve taken any prescription medications, you’ve no doubt interacted with a pharmacy technician. These professionals are most recognizable as the folks at your local drug store – handing you a prescription bag and ringing up your purchase on the cash register.

Retail pharmacies aren’t the only places pharm techs work, though. Pharmacy technicians work in a variety of settings, from hospitals to mail-order prescription facilities. And their job tasks can vary greatly depending on where they work.

What Does a Pharmacy Technician Do in a Retail Setting?

About half of all pharm techs work in drug stores, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. In a retail environment, pharmacy technicians work under the direction of the registered pharmacist to handle a number of important tasks, including:

  • Receiving prescription information from patients and physicians
  • Counting medication pills or items to be dispensed
  • Packaging and labeling medications
  • Maintaining patient records, including allergy information
  • Processing and troubleshooting insurance claims
  • Maintaining drug inventory

Most pharmacy technicians employed in a retail setting work full time, sometimes in shifts that include nights and weekends. The median pharmacy technician salary in retail drug stores is about $30,000 per year, and demand for pharm techs is expected to grow rapidly as the Baby Boomer population continues to age.

What Does a Pharmacy Technician Do in a Hospital?

Some pharm techs don’t want to interact with the public as much as required in a drug store setting. If that sounds like you, then you may be interested to know that hospitals employ many pharmacy technicians “behind the scenes” to prepare medications for patients. Like their retail peers, hospital-based pharm techs also work under the supervision of a registered pharmacist, but they may perform more complex tasks, including:

  • Preparing specialized medications for seriously ill patients
  • Mixing intravenous medications
  • Working in a sterile environment
  • Compounding radioactive materials for use in nuclear medicine scans and treatments
  • Conducting patient rounds or giving medications directly to patients

Working in a hospital is tops for pharmacy technician pay: the median salary for these professionals comes in at nearly $37,000 per year.

What Does a Pharmacy Technician Do in a Mail-Order Facility?

Many people receive their medications through the mail these days, and while it’s true that big machines count and package those pills, the prescriptions still must be processed by someone who has passed a pharmacy technician exam.

In a mail-order pharmacy, a pharm tech might:

  • Learn specialized computer programs to operate the machines that fill high volumes of common medications
  • Set up machines to dispense a particular drug into the correct container
  • Troubleshoot label jams or other issues with the equipment
  • Interact with patients, physicians, and insurers by phone

Pharmacy technician hourly pay in a mail-order facility might run as high as $15.50, for a median annual salary of about $31,000.

Other Places Pharmacy Technicians Work

Pharm techs work in other settings, too, including nursing homes and assisted living facilities, where they may package and dispense medications to patients.

How to Become a Pharmacy Technician

If you’re interested in learning more about how to become a pharmacy technician, our Admission Advisors can put you on the path to enter this this fast-growing field. Learn more about the online pharmacy technician program at Ashworth College. Call 1-800-957-5412 or request free information today!

Do Justice to Your Career by Earning Your Master’s Degree

Success Stories Do justice to your career by earning your master’s degree

In our GO AFTER IT blog series, you'll meet fellow students and grads who committed themselves to chasing their dreams and proving it pays to GO AHEAD toward better opportunities -- no matter the obstacles to be overcome.

When Dan Brennanhusen* attained his role as the new director of safety and security for a major school district, his qualifications included nearly two decades of law enforcement and corporate security experience. He had also earned his Master of Science in Criminal Justice from Ashworth College and is a strong believer in the power of education to achieve success.

“I believe higher education is a leveraging tool to seek higher positions,” says Brennanhusen, “and with higher positions you typically are better compensated.”

While Brennanhusen was rewarded with better compensation, he feels that his Ashworth College program provided him with something much more valuable than the promise of higher pay. Even after working as a professional in law enforcement for so many years, he learned new concepts and techniques from the books and lessons in the Master of Criminal Justice Degree Program. He also discovered the practicality of his education, since he is using what he learned every day in his new job.

“I found the program to be contemporary and directly applicable to my profession. The core principles and components of my studies positively impact my career daily,” he says.

The quality of the program was unquestionably relevant to Brennanhusen’s career, but there were other benefits of an Ashworth College education that drew him into attending in the first place.

“Because I had a really busy work and family life, including two kids, I had to find a flexible program. I had been promoted to new assignments and divisions so life was as busy as it could possibly be. Ashworth College offered the accreditation and flexibility I needed to attain my objectives. The cost was also a plus.”

One might ask why a successful criminal justice professional who was already promoted would want to continue their education. According to Brennanhusen, the answer was twofold: career advancement and personal growth. At the time, he was a police sergeant and wanted to become a member of his department’s executive leadership team by working his way up to chief. After being promoted to commander, Brennanhusen realized that he would need a master’s degree to be considered for the next step up. And he knew that a higher-level degree would help him in his role for future promotions.

Says Brennanhusen, “Hiring someone always comes with some risks. I view degrees and higher education as an important piece of the puzzle. Having ‘missing pieces’ may cause a potential employer to find someone who has a more complete puzzle.”

As Brennanhusen completed his educational “puzzle,” he took his time. Aside from his competing priorities of earning a living and caring for a busy family, he says he didn’t want to merely pass assignments – he wanted to get good grades, do well and truly learn. He even paused his studies for a while so he could regroup and refocus.

Congratulations to Brennanhusen on completing his master’s Degree in Criminal Justice and the opportunities it has afforded him. If you’re interested in this field, or other fields of study, we recommend you contact an Admissions Advisor at 1-800-957-5412 who will be happy to answer any and all questions you may have.

* At the request of the student in the interest of job privacy and security, a pseudonym is being used; otherwise, all quotes and information in this blog are actual and verifiable.

Ashworth Graduates Say: You Can Do It! Online Education is for Everyone

Success Stories Why Ashworth Ashworth graduates say: you can do it! Online education is for everyone

What’s your dream career? Working in the booming healthcare field? Criminal justice? Owning your own business?

All too often, people’s dreams get derailed because they think they can’t get the education they need to turn their vision into reality. The Ashworth College graduates in these videos will tell you otherwise. Hear their inspiring stories, and then talk to an admissions advisor today so you can stop dreaming and start pursuing your ideal career!

Tania’s Story: I earned a Medical Billing and Coding Certificate while living in Bermuda

Ernest’s Story: Online education made it easy for me to pursue my dream of a criminal justice degree while working

Ragion’s Story: I’m starting my own business, thanks to earning my Bachelor of Business Administration at age 45

Keana’s Story: Flexibility and affordability allowed me to complete the RN to BSN program while traveling

Ora’s Story: Here are my secrets to student success in the Ashworth College Event Planning program

This Could Be You

Wouldn’t you love to star in your own graduation video, dressed in a gown and mortarboard like these students? We would certainly love to see you walk the stage at our live commencement event to receive the certificate, diploma, or degree you earned at Ashworth College.

Learn more about the many flexible, afforedable programs available to help you start turning your dream career into a reality: Talk to an admissions advisor today!

 
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