Qualification Required to Become a Pharmacy Technician
Skills Needed for Pharmacy Technician Jobs
If you are interested in pursuing a career as a pharmacy technician, you need to possess scientific and legal knowledge, technical and management skills, and communication skills. Typically, as a pharmacy technician you are expected to prepare prescriptions for medications, providing patients with information on drugs, labeling and packaging various prescriptions, providing essential support to pharmacists, maintaining insurance records, filing insurance claims and having legal knowledge of patient-privacy issues, math and pharmacy procedures.
First of all, as a pharmacy technician you need to perform specific pharmacy calculations. This requires strong basic pharmacy and math skills including the understanding of percentages, algebraic equations and fractions that will allow preparing the prescriptions appropriately calculating the dosing of medications. Besides, you need to have a good knowledge of anatomy, chemistry and physiology.
Secondly, you need to be alert in order to avoid possible errors or any sort of problems with prescriptions. As a pharmacy technician, you are expected to be alert, precise, detail-oriented and extremely organized in spite of the supervision of the pharmacist that will administrate your work.
Self-motivation is another keyword. You are the one to face the customers and offer your services. Therefore, you have to have high ethical standards and be able to read between the lines to understand the clients’ motives. You have to ask the right questions without insulting the customer/patient, but, at the same time, be able to recognize a suspicious situation and make the right decision about whether you should provide a particular medicine to a client or not.
Strong communications and interpersonal skills are also important. As a pharmacy technician you will be working in a broad range of health-related settings such as hospitals, retail pharmacies, mail-order pharmacy services, IV/home infusion services and insurance billing offices. This means you will be required to engage in a daily interaction with diverse groups of patients, colleagues and healthcare professionals. Therefore, you communication and interpersonal skills should be strong in order to be an efficient team player.
In order to pursue a certificate as a pharmacy technician and pass your exams you may address your inquiry to the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB) and the Institute of Certification of Pharmacy Technicians (ICPT). Both bodies offer courses that will enable you to become a qualified pharmacy technician and begin a successful career in any of health-related settings.