The abc’s of Target pharmacy: P is for Pediatrics

Nothing has made me a better pharmacist more than becoming a parent. Until you have to measure out 3.2 milliliters of antibiotic with one hand while holding an infant in the other, you just don’t understand how hard giving kids their medication can be.

Target has several awesome programs designed to help exasperated parents make sure “the medicine goes down, in the most delightful way!” Better than the spoonful of sugar Mary Popppins would have given, Target pharmacists have to ability to flavor any liquid medication using the FlavoRx system. And the best part is that Target does not charge for this service. Before having children, I secretly thought that kids should have to suffer the taste of medicine just like the rest of us did. Having a toddler with an ear infection changed all that. After she spit the sticky pink antibiotic all over the kitchen, I took it back to the pharmacy and let her pick out her flavor. Just her knowing she was more in charge of the situation by being out to blurt out “BANANA” helped us get all 10 days’ worth down. Having it flavored for free was just a bonus.

Another pediatric trick Target pharmacists have up their sleeves is the PIBA (press-in-bottle-adaptor) we put in all liquid medication bottles. This little magic gem allows the parent to put a measuring syringe in the top of the bottle, turn it upside down, and draw out the exact amount of liquid. This prevents all kinds of spills and messes from trying to get those last few doses from the bottom. Parents are so in love with our PIBAs that we have a few per week asking for some to put in their over-the-counter liquid medications, and I am more than happy to help them out.

Pediatric medications have come a long way since the days of chalky antibiotics and horrible tasting cough syrups. I love working for a company that is innovative and compassionate in their pursuit of getting the medicine down – especially for the little ones!

Interested in a healthcare career with Target? Search and apply for opportunities here.

The ABC’s of Target Pharmacy: F is for Fringe Benefits

Photo: Derek and his popcorn

I’ll be honest here.  I had no intentions of working in retail pharmacy longer than I had to.  When I first moved to Dallas, I went to work for Target because it made financial sense.  I was going to work  here for six months and then quit to go to work at the big, fancy downtown hospital.  Sure, I was going to take a pay cut, but it sounded so glamorous.

So, why am I still here twelve years later?  What keeps me from going to work for one of the other retailers seen on every corner in town? For the fringe benefits of course!  Where else am I going to get:

  • One stop shopping.  It is so nice being able to pick up fresh groceries, diapers, a cute outfit for the evening, and a movie all in one place without even leaving work.  Every now and then I have to go shopping somewhere else, and it is torture.
  • 10% off on the coolest stuff.  Remember the Missoni for Target craze? It all sold out in one day, but I was able to score an awesome shirt and even save a little money on it.  Practically everything in my house came from Target, and I just love it when visitors ask, “Where did you find that?”
  • People watching.  The public never ceases to amaze me.  Enough said.

There are a few of us in the Dallas-Fort Worth area that have been Target pharmacists for over 10 years.  Here are some of the awesome responses they gave:

  • Tamara said, “I must say the number one thing that keeps me here is my team.  We’ve built great relationships with each other and it would be extremely hard for me to leave them.”
  • Lori said, “My partner and my team”  (good to know since she is my partner!)
  • Becky said, “Continuing to work with teams on developing and providing a great resource to guests.”
  • Cate said, “The first thing I think of is my peers.  There are so many of my team members that are so much more than just that.  I consider them friends as well!  The support I get from them is amazing!  Target sees the reason most of us became pharmacists in the first place…to take care of people.”
  • And, finally, our resident comedian Derek (pictured above) said, “I love the smell of fresh popcorn and I believe there is a direct vent from the pharmacy to Food Avenue.  Who could leave that?”  HA!

If it isn’t evident from these responses,  so many of us consider our pharmacy teams as family. I couldn’t agree more!

Interested in a healthcare career with Target? Search and apply for opportunities here.

The ABC’s of Target Pharmacy: E is for Education

Photo: Kevin practicing his skills

Because Target pharmacists give immunizations, we are required to be CPR certified.  We renew this certification every two years, and my renewal date came up this month.  So off to one of the Fort Worth Target stores I went after completing an online course and test.  Thankfully, the whole certification is all set up and paid for by Target, so all I have to do is show up and prove my “abilities.”  Thanks to Kevin, pictured above, for demonstrating proper technique.  Hopefully, we won’t ever to have to use our knowledge in a real life situation.

Pharmacists are also required to get a certain number of continuing education hours, depending on the state.  Texas requires thirty hours every two years.  I end up getting most of my hours through Pharmacist’s Letter, an excellent publication that gives lots of information about medications.  Pharmacist’s Letter is one of my favorite resources for staying current because it is completely unbiased publication that does not take money from any drug companies.  Their continuing education normally costs $30 per year, but Target picks up this cost for all of their pharmacists.  It’s just another benefit of working for this awesome company!

Interested in a healthcare career with Target? Search and apply for opportunities here.

The ABC’s of Target Pharmacy: D is for Dress Code

Photo: Monica's Closet

When, I was first hired WAAAAY back in 2000 (ha, it seems like yesterday!), I owned exactly one red article of clothing, a  swimsuit cover-up.  It wasn’t exactly appropriate for the red shirt/khaki attire that you see most of us wearing.  Luckily, Target sent me a welcome packet that included a cute red polo shirt that got me by on my first day of work.

Since then, the number of red shirts I own far outnumbers any other color in my closet.  I’ve notice that when I go shopping now, the first thing that draws my eye is anything red.  It’s considered a great success if I can find cute work shirts on the sales rack!  I have grown to love the red and khaki dress code, as picking out an outfit each day takes exactly 10 seconds.  Gone are the days of agonizing over what I am going to wear to work. Oh, and just an FYI, the Merona Ultimate Chino pants from Target are the best.  They need no ironing, stand up to many washes, and are a perfect fit.

Target also sends the pharmacists smocks to wear, in either short or long sleeved.  I’m a three-quarter length kind of gal, so I end up using my trusty sewing machine to hem the sleeves up.  Since I love to sew, I’ve practiced my alteration skills on the big smocks I had worn while I was pregnant, trying to make them smaller.  Needless to say, I need to keep practicing…

Working a job where you are on your feet close to twelve hours a day can be a challenge.  Luckily, I’m allowed to wear tennis shoes and have found several brands that give me the support I need.  I like to think it keeps me in shape and active as opposed to a desk job.

An inside joke I’ve heard in the past was, “What do you call a bunch of Target team members standing together?”  The answer?  A blood clot.  Get it?  All the red clumped together?  Ha!  (And that is why I am a pharmacist and not a comic…)

Interested in a healthcare career with Target? Search and apply for opportunities here.

The ABC’s of Target Pharmacy: C is for Community

Photo: Ringing up Ms M

Being from a small town in the Texas Panhandle, I grew up with a strong sense of community.  It was the kind of town where you knew everyone and couldn’t get away with much mischief without word getting back to your parents quickly.  If I was mean to my art teacher, my mother had already heard about it by the time she picked me up from school.

It was because of this strong background that I feel like Target is a great fit for me now.  I work at a location that is less than three miles from home, so I end up running into lots of guests at the oddest places:  my kids’ swim class, in line at the post office, on an airplane, and lots of times at local restaurants.

One of the best “Hey, I know you!” moments was Meet The Teacher night at my daughter’s school.  I was thrilled when I found out Ms. “M” was her teacher.  After all, Ms. “M” and I had known each other from the pharmacy way before my daughter was even born.  Now, she is no longer just a guest at my store but has become a great friend!

Whenever I run into someone I know from the pharmacy, it’s always a relief to hear that they love us and tell all their friends about us.  If they hadn’t been treated so well, it could turn out to be quite embarrassing, kind of like my parents finding out I had been mean to my teacher.

I love living in the big city but having a small town feel at work.  As a teenager, it was a treat to go to the nearest Target, 90 miles away.  Now, I get to treat myself everyday!

Interested in a healthcare career with Target? Search and apply for opportunities here.

The ABC’s of Target Pharmacy: A is for Appreciation

Holy cow!  One of our former guest’s family members just delivered flowers to our pharmacy in appreciation for taking such good care of  her mom.  We just found out Ms. “R” passed away this week.  We had been delivering prescriptions to her for several years, and I had no idea we meant so much to her.

Our pharmacy is a little unique in that we deliver prescriptions to a local assisted living facility.  The residents are self-sufficient but, for the most part, no longer drive.  Some of our guests (Target’s terminology for customers) we know quite well.   Others, not so much.  Ms. “R” was that way.  We rarely heard from her, and I’m not so sure I had ever even met her.  But, come to find out, she had been filling out those little surveys that appear on the bottom of certain receipts, bragging all about us.  Talk about motivation to please our guests!  I am thankful to be in a position to help out not only the residents but also the family members.

Interested in a healthcare career with Target? Search and apply for opportunities here.