Pharmacy Technician

Pharmacy Technician

Train to become a member of a pharmacy support team.


Pharmacy_TechnicianA pharmacy technician, or pharmaceutical technician, works under the direct supervision of a licensed pharmacist to dispense prescription medications and perform other pharmacy related functions. Pharmacy technicians typically can be found in retail and hospital pharmacies but also work in a variety of other locations including pharmaceutical manufacturers, long-term care facilities, insurance providers, computer software companies or in government or teaching settings.

Excellent communication skills in general are vital to being a good pharmacy tech but in particular these technicians need to be able to express themselves clearly, listen attentively to other people, understand what they’re saying and to understand information presented in written form. Pharmacy technicians also need to be able to put information in order, use deductive reasoning and recognize and solve problems. The ability to provide good customer service is also beneficial to a pharmacy tech’s career.

What Do Pharmacy Technicians Do?

As well as dispensing medications pharmacy technicians undertake a variety of other tasks, which include ensuring the medications are securely stored, responding to telephone and face-to-face queries or requests, referring patients to pharmacists for further information and assistance, filling bottles with medications and labeling them and pricing and filing filled prescriptions. A pharmacy technician is also expected to assist in cleaning and maintaining work areas and equipment as well as sterilizing glassware.

How Much Do Pharmacy Technicians Earn?

The median annual wage for pharmacy technicians was $30,410 in May 2015. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $20,950, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $45,030. Employment of pharmacy technicians is, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, growing at a much faster rate than the average for all occupations. As pharmacy technicians become increasingly in demand, they’ll arguably soon be able to command even higher average salaries than they currently do. Also pharmacy technicians who obtained their qualifications from reputable educational institutions, including accredited online schools, may be more likely to have greater earning potential.

What Education Does a Pharmacy Technician Need?

A high school diploma is normally required to become a pharmacy technician. Certain states in the US also require you to complete a formal training program and pass an examination. Training can be done both in traditional educational settings and through online programs. An increasing number of accredited online schools are offering programs relevant to those who want to become pharmacy technicians. By enrolling in online programs as opposed to traditional ones, budding pharmacy technicians benefit in a number of ways. For example the flexibility that accredited online schools offer their students allow individuals to control what they study and when.

Some technicians also obtain a certification by passing a certification examination. The two currently available certification exams are the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam (PTCE) and the Exam for the Certification of Pharmacy Technician (ExCPT), offered by the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB) and the Institute for the Certification of Pharmacy Technicians (ICPT) respectively. The candidate is granted certification after successfully completing the exam.

Find Pharmacy Technician Programs Near You
Explore the detailed listings of accredited schools that offer pharmacy training or Pharmacy Technician Degree Programs that best meet your needs. Get started today by selecting the schools that interest you and fill out the brief information request form to speak directly with Pharmacy Technician Program representatives.