It’s not as hard as one might think to become a pharmacy technician. The first step is to research and find an accredited program.
Checkout this video:
The Job of a Pharmacy Technician
Pharmacy technicians play an important role in pharmacies. They are responsible for ensuring that medications are dispensed correctly and that patients receive the correct medications. They also maintain records and keep the pharmacy organized.
Duties of a pharmacy technician
The duties of a pharmacy technician are quite varied and may include any or all of the following:
-Assisting pharmacists in preparing and dispensing medications
-Receiving and entering prescription orders into the computer
-Verifying insurance coverage for prescriptions
-Answering questions from patients and customers
-Maintaining inventory and ordering supplies
-Preparing insurance claim forms
-Cleaning and maintaining the work area
The exact duties of a pharmacy technician will vary depending on the size and type of pharmacy in which they work. In a large hospital setting, for example, a pharmacy technician may be responsible for all of the duties listed above, while in a smaller retail pharmacy they may only be responsible for a few.
Education and training requirements
Prospective pharmacy technicians generally must complete a formal training program, which may last from several months to two years. Formal programs may be offered by community colleges, technical schools, hospitals, and the military. Many pharmacy technician programs include classroom instruction and hands-on training in a pharmacy. Topics covered in training may include customer service skills, pharmacy law and ethics, infection control, and medical terminology.
Some states require pharmacy technicians to be certified. Certification requirements vary by state but generally include passing a written exam and completing a certain number of hours of training under the supervision of a licensed pharmacist. Some states also require certification candidates to take continuing education courses. After completing all requirements, pharmacy technicians are often eligible for voluntary national certification through organizations such as the Institute for the Certification of Pharmacy Technicians (ICPT) or the National Healthcare Association (NHA).
The Path to Becoming a Pharmacy Technician
Becoming a pharmacy technician is a great way to get started in the medical field. The job is in high demand and is expected to grow much faster than average in the next decade. Plus, you can usually find a job with just a high school diploma and on-the-job training. However, becoming a pharmacy technician is not always easy. You will need to complete an accredited pharmacy technician program and pass a certification exam. In this article, we will discuss the steps you need to take to become a pharmacy technician.
In order to become a pharmacy technician, there are a few prerequisites that must be met. Firstly, pharmacy technicians must have a high school diploma or equivalent. Secondly, they must complete an accredited pharmacy technician training program. And lastly, they must pass a national certification exam.
There are voluntary certification programs for pharmacy technicians that are recommended by many employers. Most states do not have mandatory certification requirements, but those that do usually require certification as a condition of employment. Certification is available through several organizations:
The Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB) administers a national certification exam that leads to the credential Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT). To qualify to take the PTCB exam, candidates must have a high school diploma or equivalent, complete an accredited pharmacy technician training program, and have no felony convictions. The PTCB exam has multiple choice and essay questions.
The National Healthcare Association (NHA) offers the Certified Phlebotomy Technician (CPT) credential for phlebotomists. Candidates must have a high school diploma or equivalent, complete an accredited phlebotomy training program, and have no more than two dislodged veins during their practical skills examination. The NHA’s phlebotomy certification exam has multiple choice and essay questions.
The Institute for the Certification of Pharmacy Technicians (ICPT) offers the Certified Compounded Sterile Preparation Technician (CSPT) credential. Candidates must have a high school diploma or equivalent, be currently employed as a pharmacy technician in a compounding sterile preparations pharmacy, and have no felony convictions. The ICPT’s CSPT examination has multiple choice questions.
Most pharmacy technicians receive on-the-job training, which typically lasts a few months to a year. Some states require pharmacy technicians to take continuing education courses, and many employers encourage their employees to do so.
The Future of Pharmacy Technician Careers
A pharmacy technician is a person who works in a pharmacy and is responsible for various tasks such as customer service, stocking shelves, and assist pharmacists in preparing and dispensing medications. They also might be responsible for verifying insurance, processing prescription refill requests, and answering questions from patients.
The job outlook for pharmacy technicians is positive. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that employment of pharmacy technicians will grow by 12 percent from 2016 to 2026, which is faster than the average for all occupations.1
Some factors contributing to this growth include an aging population (older adults are more likely to take multiple medications and need assistance managing them) and a growing number of retail clinics and other outpatient care centers. As the number of places where patients can receive care increases, so does the demand for technicians to work in them.
In addition, many pharmacy technicians go on to become certified pharmacy technicians (CPhTs). CPhTs have more responsibility and may supervise other technicians. Certification gives employers confidence that CPhTs have the knowledge and skills needed to do their jobs well. Certification also may lead to higher pay. The Pharmacy Technician Certification Board offers the Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT) credential. To earn this credential, candidates must pass a national exam.
The median annual wage for pharmacy technicians was $32,710 in May 2019. The median wage is the wage at which half the workers in an occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $23,470, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $47,040.
In May 2019, the median annual wages for pharmacy technicians in the top industries in which they worked were as follows:
Hospitals; state, local, and private$35,620
General merchandise stores33,940
Pharmacies and drug stores33,520
Most pharmacy technicians work full time. Because pharmacies are open 24 hours a day, some pharmacy technicians work evenings or nights. Some also work weekends.