Qualifications for a Pharmacy Technician
Before you enter the workforce, whether it's as a medical biller or pharmacy technician, it's important to get a clear sense of what you're up against in regards to the educational and career requirements the position demands. In other words, the academic and learning steps you need to take before you become a full-time employee. The qualifications for a pharmacy technician are no different. There are steps along the way, things you need to learn before entering your career as a pharmacy technician.
To do and learn before you become a pharmacy technician:
- Before you do anything, if you want to become a pharmacy technician you will need to become certified. To accomplish this, you will need to sign up for courses that prepare you to take the exam that will help you procure certification: the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB) exam. Allied offers both a Pharmacy Technician Professional and a Pharmacy Technician Professional with Pharmacology Program; both of which prepare you to achieve the certification.
- Once you pass your pharmacy technician program, you can take the PTCB exam to receive your certification. The certification is nationally recognized, so you can take it with you anywhere in the United States. Plus, if you are worried about passing the exam, don't! Allied offers a special Pass or Don't Pay certification exam promise, which says that if you don't pass the first time, your exam fee will be refunded in its entirety. Register with the PTCB to take your examination here.
- At this point, you have a couple of choices. If you enroll in Allied's Pharmacy Technician Professional Program, you receive a complimentary Externship Program. During the externship, you will experience hands-on learning that will help you gauge and get a sense of how you fare in a real-life work environment. Since externship hours vary by state and location, we advise that you refer to the board of pharmacy in your state.
- Lastly, depending on the state you are in, you will need to apply for a pharmacy technician license. As we said, not every state requires it, but most do. To see if your state requires a license, visit your state's board of pharmacy.
- Computer: Because you will have to create patient profiles, submit insurance claims, interact with vendors online and print prescription labels, you will need to know how to operate a computer. You don't need to know be a tech whiz, but you do need to know the basics.
- Organization: With the hundreds of prescriptions at your fingertips from day-to-day, it's important to operate with a strong sense of organization.
- Memory: Your ability to memorize is an important part of a pharmacy technician career. A good tip is to use index cards to help you remember all of the drug names and their generic counterparts.
- Attention to Detail: This goes along with organization in a way. As a pharmacy technician, you will need to pay attention to a wide range of important details, from patient histories to accurate diagnoses.
- Math and Science: A basic understanding of math and science concepts, including percentages, fractions, anatomy, chemistry and physiology, is also pretty important.
- Customer Service: Lastly, because you will be speaking to customers quite a bit, you will need to learn how to properly and professionally handle customer complaints and concerns. With this, strong communication skills are essential.
Now that you know what it takes to become a qualified pharmacy technician, why not get started? Enroll in Allied's Pharmacy Technician Program today, or call (888) 822-2923 for more information.