Pharmacy Technicians assists pharmacists to provide the right medication and other healthcare products. They always prepare approved medications for example, by counting tablets and labeling bottles.
Pharmacy Technicians, most of the time, perform complex tasks to help in the pharmacy. They have responsibilities depending on the department where they work; they receive requests for any prescribed medicine, verify that the information of the prescription, retrieve, count, pour, weigh, measure and mix the medications, select the container and attach the instructions and other labels to the container. They also have to maintain patient profiles, prepare insurance claims forms and maintain the order in the inventory of prescriptions.
Pharmacy Technicians work in different shifts, depending on the schedule of the pharmacies or hospitals. They can have part time work and get to choose their schedule.
More than 211,000 Pharmacy Technicians were employed in 2002. More than 22% of them work in hospitals and the rest in Internet pharmacies, clinics, pharmaceutical wholesales and the Federal Government.
Most of the Pharmacy Technicians receive an informal training on the job. The education program to be a Pharmacy Technician is given by hospitals, technical colleges and community colleges. This formal education includes classroom and laboratory work, medical terminology, calculation, recordkeeping, techniques, law and ethics about pharmacy. It also includes medication information (action, names and more), internships and hands on experience. They will receive a diploma, certificate or associate degree, depending on the course.
Some States have a voluntary test for the National Pharmacy Technician Certification (COhT). It is offered several times a year. Those how pass this test have a standard knowledge and skills.
For pharmacy technicians there are great job opportunities, which can be full or part time. Pharmacy Technicians earn from $10.70 to $13.19 per work hour. The certificated technicians earn more than that.
Some other occupations that pharmacy technicians may do are dental assistants, licensed practical medical transcriber, medical records or surgical technologists.