What Pharmacy Technicians Do

Pharmacy technicians help licensed pharmacists dispense prescription medication to customers or health professionals.

Work Environment

Pharmacy technicians work in pharmacies, including those found in grocery and drug stores, and in hospitals. Most work full time, but many work part time.

Pay

The median annual wage for pharmacy technicians was $29,320 in May 2012.

Job Outlook

Employment of pharmacy technicians is projected to grow 20 percent from 2012 to 2022, faster than the average for all occupations. Several factors will lead to increased demand for prescription medications.

The Pharmacy Technician Program

This program will prepare students to enter the pharmacy field and to pursue certification including the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board’s PTCB exam. This course covers the following key areas and topics:

  • Pharmacy calculations
  • Medical terminology specific to the pharmacy
  • Skills to read and interpret prescriptions
  • Review of the top 200 drugs
  • Skills to identify drugs by generic and brand names
  • Dosage calculations, I.V. flow rates, drug compounding, and dose conversions
  • Dispensing of prescriptions, inventory control, and billing and reimbursement

Education and Certifications

  • Students should have or be pursuing a high school diploma or GED.
  • The Pharmacy Technician Certification Board’s (PTCB) is the national certification exam.
  • Numerous states now require PTCB certification to work as a pharmacy technician.
  • Certain national and state pharmacy technician certification exams are available.

Detailed Course Topics Covered

  • The history of pharmacy and healthcare
  • Pharmacy technician role and responsibilities
  • Pharmacy technician certification and registration process
  • Types of pharmacies including the hospital pharmacy, retail practice, long-term care practice, mail order pharmacy, home care pharmacies, and others
  • Drug regulation and control
  • Pharmaceutical terminology and related anatomy
  • Parts of the prescription and labeling
  • Pharmacy calculations and math review
  • Pharmacy measures and abbreviations
  • Routes and formulations
  • Parenterals and compounding
  • Basic biophamaceutics
  • Aseptic technique and the handling of sterile products
  • Total Parenteral Nutrition (TPN)
  • Basics of IV solutions and calculating 24-hour supply of IV solutions
  • Factors affecting drug activity
  • Information and pharmacy resources
  • Inventory management and financial issues
  • Brand names and generic drugs
  • Drug names and drug classes

To access the Online Program Information and Enrollment Click Here.