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Pharmacy Technician

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What is a Pharmacy Technician?

Job Description: Prepare medications under the direction of a pharmacist. May measure, mix, count out, label, and record amounts and dosages of medications according to prescription orders.

Daily Life Of a Pharmacy Technician

  • Price and file prescriptions that have been filled.
  • Answer telephones, responding to questions or requests.
  • Transfer medication from vials to the appropriate number of sterile, disposable syringes, using aseptic techniques.
  • Maintain and merchandise home healthcare products or services.
  • Compute charges for medication or equipment dispensed to hospital patients and enter data in computer.
  • Assist customers by answering simple questions, locating items, or referring them to the pharmacist for medication information.

What Every Pharmacy Technician Should Know

Below is a list of the skills most Pharmacy Technicians say are important on the job.

Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Time Management: Managing one’s own time and the time of others.

Service Orientation: Actively looking for ways to help people.

Types of Pharmacy Technician

  • Accredited Pharmacy Technician
  • Pharmacist Technician
  • Technician
  • Lead Pharmacy Tech, Certified Pharmacy Technician (Lead Pharmacy Tech, CPhT)
  • Senior Pharmacy Technician

Is There Job Demand for Pharmacy Technicians?

In 2016, there was an estimated number of 402,500 jobs in the United States for Pharmacy Technician. New jobs are being produced at a rate of 11.8% which is above the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 47,600 new jobs for Pharmacy Technician by 2026. Due to new job openings and attrition, there will be an average of 37,500 job openings in this field each year.

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The states with the most job growth for Pharmacy Technician are Utah, Nevada, and Arizona. Watch out if you plan on working in Maine, Illinois, or Wisconsin. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Pharmacy Technician Average Salary

The average yearly salary of a Pharmacy Technician ranges between $22,740 and $48,010.

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Pharmacy Technicians who work in Alaska, Washington, or Oregon, make the highest salaries.

How much do Pharmacy Technicians make in each U.S. state?

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $30,040
Alaska $43,150
Arizona $35,090
Arkansas $29,640
California $42,610
Colorado $36,880
Connecticut $34,530
Delaware $34,470
District of Columbia $39,980
Florida $32,090
Georgia $30,240
Hawaii $38,720
Idaho $35,920
Illinois $33,140
Indiana $31,160
Iowa $32,560
Kansas $32,940
Kentucky $29,270
Louisiana $32,700
Maine $31,690
Maryland $33,880
Massachusetts $37,110
Michigan $32,660
Minnesota $37,670
Mississippi $31,440
Missouri $32,090
Montana $34,780
Nebraska $33,270
Nevada $37,620
New Hampshire $32,370
New Jersey $33,070
New Mexico $33,710
New York $34,640
North Carolina $30,890
North Dakota $39,770
Ohio $30,500
Oklahoma $30,790
Oregon $40,920
Pennsylvania $30,000
Rhode Island $37,410
South Carolina $31,530
South Dakota $32,720
Tennessee $32,980
Texas $34,290
Utah $37,190
Vermont $34,070
Virginia $32,370
Washington $42,470
West Virginia $28,650
Wisconsin $32,750
Wyoming $37,460

What Tools & Technology do Pharmacy Technicians Use?

Below is a list of the types of tools and technologies that Pharmacy Technicians may use on a daily basis:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft Outlook
  • Database software
  • MEDITECH software
  • Medical condition coding software
  • Point of sale POS software
  • Inventory management software
  • Pyxis MedStation software
  • Patient record maintenance software
  • Prescription processing software
  • Label-making software

How do I Become a Pharmacy Technician?

Education needed to be a Pharmacy Technician:

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What work experience do I need to become a Pharmacy Technician?

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Where do Pharmacy Technicians Work?

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Pharmacy Technicians work in the following industries:

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Similar Careers

Those interested in being a Pharmacy Technician may also be interested in:

Those who work as a Pharmacy Technician sometimes switch careers to one of these choices:

References:

Image Credit: Ryan Conroy via Public domain

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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