Air Force master sergeant Jessica Hughes named PTCB Certified Pharmacy Technician of the Year

Hughes often had to perform pharmacist duties while deployed in Afghanistan

WASHINGTON — A U.S. Air Force master sergeant has been named the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board's Certified Pharmacy Technician of the Year, the PTCB said.

The PTCB announced that master sergeant Jessica Hughes, the non-commissioned officer in charge of pharmacy support at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, in New Jersey, was selected as the PTCB CPhT of the Year. The finalists also included Rico Powell and Linda Henson.

While deployed in Afghanistan, Hughes prepared 1,300 IV medications, 70% of the total workload, and provided drug therapy support to more than 900 patients, often finding herself leaned on as a pharmacist as well as a technician because she worked overnight shifts when no pharmacist was available.

"The experience opened my eyes to much more than what I normally see in a clinic setting," Hughes said. "I was called to traumas and had to make IVs and TPNs, and I was asked about things that were new to me, but I was depended upon to find answers."

Currently, at McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, Hughes oversees the vault, logistics and clinic inspections, playing an active role in frontline pharmacy operations, researching medication shortages and serving as a tobacco cessation instructor, achieving a 70% quit rate.


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