Certifiable

Many people don’t know this, but there is a certification process for veterinary technicians just like there is for nurses. We have to go to school and get an AAS degree, then take state and national board exams, then keep our certification current by obtaining continuing education (CE) hours every year. Depending on the state you live in, you then get the title of Licensed Veterinary Technician, Certified Veterinary Technician or Registered Veterinary Technician. In Texas, it’s Registered Veterinary Technician or – as we say because we love our abbreviations – RVT.

Since I let my certification expire while I was having my breakdown, I knew it was going to be a process to get it back. I got an answer from the state board about what I would have to do to get re-certified. The lady in charge said that I have to retake my state boards (the next set of which are given in June) and pay two years worth of back dues and late fees for a total of $100. That’s not including the cost of the state boards, which are $130.

I also have to show proof that I received 15 hours of CE either within the last two years or the six months following the test. That part is easy because I already got 18 hours at the last symposium I went to in September of 2011. I also plan on going to this year’s symposium, where I have the potential to get another 15-18 hours. Some clinics offer CE benefits, too. Hopefully I would be able to get on board with one of them.

Luckily, I don’t have to have my certification to apply for jobs. A good number of techs in Texas aren’t RVTs but are just as good, and if I tell the interviewer that I’m planning to take the boards in June they’ll consider it good.

Last time I took the test I missed studying an entire section because of shenanigans, but I still made an 85. This time I’m going to start studying sooner so I can make sure I pass again. It’s a really boring test, involving Texas state law and matters important to the state like rabies and brucellosis. Thrill of my life.

Getting back to work, now that will be a real thrill. And for once, I’m not being sarcastic.

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