Advance Your Career with Certifications (Part 2)

If you’ve been thinking about advancing your pharmacy career and getting certified, now is the time. Take advantage of the opportunity.  Pharmacist certifications will provide you with the opportunity to develop specific interests, knowledge, and experience so you can become eligible for specialized careers in the field of pharmacy. Certifications highlight your expertise and come in handy when you’re collaborating with other healthcare providers.

Listed below are six general certifications pharmacists like you can pursue:

Certified Specialty Pharmacist (CSP)

The Certified Specialty Pharmacist designation is offered by the National Association of Specialty Pharmacy. Having this credential proves you are experienced in developing and managing medication therapy for patients with diseases like rheumatoid arthritis, cancer, and multiple sclerosis. To acquire the CSP certification, you must have:

  • A bachelor’s degree or doctorate in pharmacy
  • An active pharmacist license
  • Completion of 30 hours of specialty pharmacy continuing education within the last two years
  • At least 3,000 hours of professional experience within the last four years
  • A passing score on the exam

Certified Medical Interpreter (CMI)

Are you proficient in multiple languages? If so, you can pursue the Certified Medical Interpreter designation. The National Board of Certification for Medical Interpreters offers this type of certification in Spanish, Korean, Russian, Mandarin, Cantonese, and Vietnamese.

Having this certification will demonstrate your ability to improve communications with patients by helping them clearly understand medications and treatments regimens. Certification requirements include training in medical interpreting, demonstrated oral proficiency, and a written test.

Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT)

Are you a pharmacy technician who is working to become a pharmacist? If so, you can earn the Certified Pharmacy Technician credential. The Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB) certifies pharmacy technicians who strive to provide their knowledge of medication safety and patient care. You can earn the CPhT if you:

  • Complete a pharmacy technician training program
  • Have at least 500 hours of work experience in pharmacies
  • Earn a passing score on the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam

HIV Pharmacist (AAHIVP)

The HIV Pharmacist credential is offered by the American Academy of HIV Medicine. If you provide care to patients with HIV, you can earn this certification. It verifies that you are able to provide client services, consultation, or case review with patients or providers. You can earn this certification with the following credentials:

  • An active pharmacist license
  • Direct involvement in providing HIV care to 25 or more patients within the last three years
  • At least 45 credit hours of HIV-related continuing education or participation in an HIV-related residency program

Certified Clinical Research Professional (CCRP)

Do you enjoy conducting pharmacological research? If so, you might want to pursue the Certified Clinical Research Professional designation. The Society of Clinical Research Associates offers this certification for different healthcare providers, including pharmacists. It verifies your ability to manage clinical trials, develop treatments, and interact with patients. However, you must meet one of the following pathways for certification:

  • Two years of clinical research experience within the last five years
  • A degree in clinical research with one year of relevant experience
  • A certificate in clinical research, a degree in pharmacy, and one year of relevant experience

Certified Pharmacy Executive Leader (CPEL)

This designation is for pharmacists in executive leadership positions with healthcare organizations. This demonstrates your pharmacy expertise and ability to lead teams in complex healthcare systems. You can learn the CPEL through the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists. This organization requires you to meet the following prerequisites for certification:

  • Have an active pharmacist license
  • Complete a pharmacy program and accredited pharmacy residency
  • Currently be in an executive leadership position with at least five years of leadership experience
  • Submit a reference from another executive team member

Becoming certified may encourage you to stay current with new medications, practices, or medical advancements. This can be valuable when you’re treating patients. Plus, your pharmacist certifications will provide credibility to your expertise and will help you collaborate more efficiently with other healthcare providers. So, what are you waiting for?

A Member-Owned Company Serving Independent Pharmacies

PBA Health is dedicated to helping independent pharmacies reach their full potential on the buy-side of their business. Founded and run by pharmacists, PBA Health serves independent pharmacies with group purchasing services, wholesaler contract negotiations, proprietary purchasing tools, and more.

An HDA member, PBA Health operates its own NABP-accredited warehouse with more than 6,000 SKUs, including brands, generics, narcotics CII-CV, cold-storage products, and over-the-counter (OTC) products — offering the lowest prices in the secondary market.

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