Pharmacy Technician Career Profile
By Cixx Admin Date Posted.. 2009-07-06 19:23:22
Views (4604)

Pharmacy Technician 


Description:  It’s important to make the right distinctions between the duties of a Pharmacy Technician and a Pharmacist.  The duty of the technician is to help the licensed pharmacist provide the necessary meds to patients and consumers.  This involves routine organizational tasks such as counting pills and placing labels on bottles.   There’s also the business of answering phones and speaking to patients, organizing shelves and dealing with the cash register.  It’s the pharmacist who deals with questions pertaining to health and medication, and it’s the technician’s responsibility to facilitate these matters.

As a Pharmacy Technician, you will handle requests for refills and prescriptions in a retail, hospital, or mail-order pharmacy.  Filling a prescription will involve verification, retrieval, counting, weighing, bottling, and labeling of the medication.  After which, the technician will file the prescription, handle any necessary paperwork, and relay questions to the pharmacist.

In general, the necessary skills for this position include a rudimentary understanding of mathematics, medicine, and chemistry.  The bulk of the position relies upon organizational skills, as well as good communication and customer service skills.

Statistics:  This is considered to be a position that will grow in demand over the next 10 years beyond the average career.   There’s an expected 32% increase, mostly due to the increased numbers of elderly citizens and the ever-expanding prescription drug market.  71% of pharmacy technicians work in grocery stores, drug stores, retail pharmacies, and department stores.   In 2006, 285,000 people were employed in this position.

Training:  Training and experience as a Pharmacy Technician will greatly increase your chances of finding full-time and part-time work in this field.   However, the majority of technicians are trained on the job.  There are few state requirements for formal training but there are a decent number of training courses at vocational schools and community colleges. 

Salary:  In 2006, the average pharmacy salary was $11.37 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.  That’s an annual income of $23,650 based upon a 40-hour work week.   This can vary greatly by state and employer.
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