Pharmacy Technician Job Description

If you can meet minimum requirements in a pharmacy technician job description, this is an excellent way to enter the medical field without years of expensive higher education. The pharmacy technician career field does not include any duties that would require extensive education, so it is perfect for college students and adults who want to work in some capacity of the medical community.

Pharmacy Technician Job Responsibilities

The pharmacy technician job description could be related to the job of administrative assistant. Just as an administrative assistant would make sure everything runs smoothly in the office of a business professional, the pharmacy technician is required to keep everything running smoothly behind the counter in a pharmacy.

The pharmacy technician job description almost always includes direct interaction with the public. When someone comes into the pharmacy to pick up a prescription, the technician will check if the prescription is ready to go. They will then make sure insurance information has been dealt with professionally and collect the required payment from the customer. If there are questions, the technician will either give answers and solve the problems or work with the pharmacist to get answers and problem solve.

Besides working with the public, someone filling a pharmacy technician job will also be required to stock supplies and make sure the desk area is kept neat and organized for the pharmacists. The job may require them to contact insurance companies or state agencies about medical benefits, or they may make phone calls to doctor’s offices to verify some prescriptions.

Since the pharmacy technician does a lot of the clerical work and customer interaction on behalf of the pharmacists, they are very similar to an administrative assistant. The difference is that the pharmacy technician job description includes long hours standing and walking around the pharmacy desk.

Pharmacy Technician Training and Education Requirements

Most pharmacy technician positions will require a high school diploma, but no further education is required in most cases. Most states do require registration, but a high school diploma is typically that is required forpharmacy technician job approval.

Job applicants who have experience in other settings in the following areas may be at a strong advantage when meeting requirements for a pharmacy technician job description:

  • Management
  • Customer Service
  • Computer Work
  • Clerical
  • Medical Office of Billing

Those familiar with medications or who have worked at the front desk in a doctor’s office may have a lot of experience that is directly transferable to the pharmacy technician career. Those with customer service skills will have excellent communication skills, which helps in dealing with customers in a pharmacy. Those with experience working with computers or who understand computers and can pick up on new systems quickly may also be preferred. Those who have worked as cashiers may be well suited to this job as well, since they will be experienced carrying out transactions with pharmacy customers.

Most pharmacies are prepared to train new technicians after being hired, but they prefer to hire people who already have some of the skills needed to be successful in the job. Those who are friendly and customer-oriented with the ability to multi-task and remain physically active all day long will more likely meet all requirements listed in a pharmacy technician job description.

Pharmacy Technician Salary and Wages

Pharmacy technician salaries are determined by the place of employment, but they are generally under $30,000 a year. Some pharmacy technician jobs are offered through small local pharmacies while others are offered through large retail stores or pharmacy chains. Pharmacies located inside hospitals or doctor’s offices will also have pharmacy technician positions to fill. Wages will vary depending on the employer, and whether the technician is considered a full-time or part-time employee.

Pharmacy Technician Certifications

Certification programs are available for pharmacy technicians, but they are not required. Many pharmacies will hire technicians who have not gone through any formal training for the pharmacy technician job. Others may require certification if they want to hire technicians who do not need extensive training.

Certification programs are offered through many community colleges and smaller educational institutions. National certification examinations can also be taken through the following organizations:

  • Pharmacy Technician Certification Board
  • Institute for the Certification of Pharmacy Technicians

Beyond registering with the state, there are no certification programs technically required to secure a pharmacy technician job.

Pharmacy Technician Professional Associations

Professional associations help workers stay on top of news in their field, and may come in handy if there are problems with an employer in the industry. Many candidates for the pharmacy technician job will join at least one professional association to make their resume more impressive.

There are three established professional associations for those in the pharmacy technician field:

  • Institute for the Certification of Pharmacy Technicians
  • National Pharmacy Technician Association
  • Pharmacy Technician Certification Board

None of these professional associations guarantee jobs, but they are excellent resources for information on the typical pharmacy technician job description.

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