What does a pharmacy technician do?
When you get sick, you probably go to the doctor. If the doctor decides you need medicine to feel better, then they write you a prescription. You then go to the pharmacy to pick it up and will hopefully be on your way to feeling better soon.
But have you ever thought about how your prescription actually gets to you? Chances are, a pharmacy technician is involved. They assist pharmacists in dispensing medication to their customers or health professionals. Some of the duties of a pharmacy technician include:
- Collecting information to fill a prescription, including entering customer information and answering phone calls
- Measuring amounts of medication for prescriptions
- Packaging and labeling prescriptions
- Processing insurance and collecting payments
- Organizing inventory and monitoring shortages
Pharmacy technicians work under the supervision of pharmacists, who review prescriptions before they are dispensed. Some technicians may mix some medications or, in hospitals, prepare intravenous medications and take rounds.
One important quality pharmacy technicians should have are good customer-service skills. Pharmacy technicians regularly work with customers, so it’s important for them to listen, communicate well and be helpful. It’s also important for them to be detail oriented. Filling prescriptions is a huge task; mistakes can be extremely dangerous, so it is essential that pharmacy technicians pay attention to every detail to make sure complications are avoided. Math skills are also key. Pharmacy techs need to have an understanding of math concepts used when counting pills and compounding medications.
Does that sound like you? You might consider becoming a pharmacy technician. This career is expected to grow 12 percent from 2016 to 2026, which is faster than the average for all occupations.1 The population is aging, which means more prescription medicines are going to be prescribed.
Though some pharmacy technicians learn on the job, others complete pharmacy tech training before entering the field.2
These pharmacy tech classes offer students the chance to study the basics of drug interactions, medical abbreviations and patient interactions, as well as to get hands-on experience. Both pharmacy tech programs also give students the chance to obtain certification by passing a national pharmacy technician certification exam.
At Remington College, we say that pharmacy technicians are “a direct link to making someone well.” If you want to be part of that vital chain, visit our website or give us a call at 1-800-208-1950 to learn more.
1BLS statistics represent national job growth expectations and are not necessarily reflective of local market conditions.
2 Employment is not guaranteed for students or graduates.
- Duties of a pharmacy technician
- Important Qualities of a pharmacy technician
- Projected growth rates
- How to become a pharmacy technician
- Associate degree program
- Diploma program