Pharmacy Technician Careers are a very popular choice for traditional and older students. Why you ask? A career as a pharmacy technician can be both financially rewarding and provide a great level of a job satisfaction. More so, the pharmacy technician career outlook and opportunities for development provide a promising future for the right people.
Starting a career as a pharmacy technician is not that difficult or expensive. Pharmacy tech training courses and education providers are easily accessible and certification can be achieved in a relatively short period, when compared with going to school or college and completing courses and degrees in other fields of study. The average time it takes to become a certified pharmacy technician is between 9 months and a year, or the equivalent of 240 hours, which includes a combination of time spent in the classroom and clinical work experience.
Average Costs to Start a Career as a Pharmacy Technician
The costs involved in pursuing training and certification for entry in to a pharmacy technician career varies depending on which state you live in. On average pharmacy technician certificates and degrees cost between $500 and $5000. However, some state technical and vocational schools can cost up to $20,000 for the same courses. In addition to the cost of pharmacy technician training other expenses will include books at $50 to $150. Although not compulsory, but highly recommended, after completing training many people will become certified pharmacy technicians through the National Pharmacy Technician Certification exam which costs $129.
Pharmacy Technican Careers and Employment
After completing a pharmacy tech study program and becoming certified, pharmacy technicians can kick start their careers in a variety of different work placements within medical, healthcare and retail sectors. There are many pharmacy technician jobs available on the employment market, these include jobs in hospitals and nursing homes and jobs in drug stores and retail pharmacies. However, before you can start your working career in a pharmacy technician role, you will probably be required to register with a state board of pharmacy. The majority of states require this registration and eligibility requirements vary, often requiring a pharmacy technician certificate of diploma or its equivalent.
Several options are available to progress and advance your career as a pharmacy technician whilst in employment. Supervisory roles can take many years, however; several other career advancement routes can be taken to progress into higher paying positions. A popular route for pharmacy technicians pursuing careers advancement is study additional courses such as learning to make medication compounds following recipes created by pharmacists. This type of course is called ‘Compound Certification’ and can lead to a salary and role promotion. Pharmacy technicians working in a hospital setting can undertake a program called ‘IV Certification’, which involves learning about sterile product preparation and aseptic techniques and leads to a title as an ‘IV Certified Pharmacy Technician’ which can not only increase your chances of careers promotion in a hospital setting, but enhance your prospects of earning a salary and wages increase.