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Pharmacy technicians work alongside licensed pharmacists to prepare your prescriptions, assisting them in all the day-to-day tasks of the pharmacy, from handling medications to maintaining patient records.

pharmacy technician

Education Requirements:

Pharmacy technician programs can be found at community and technical colleges.

Programs range from as little as 15 weeks to as long as two years, awarding a certificate, diploma or associate degree.


Most hospitals require completion of a recognized pharmacy technician program that is accredited by the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP).

Formal pharmacy-technician education programs require classroom and laboratory work in a variety of areas, including medical and pharmaceutical terminology, pharmaceutical calculations, pharmacy record keeping, pharmaceutical techniques, and pharmacy law and ethics. Technicians are also required to learn medication names, actions, uses, and doses. 

Job Tasks:

  • Receive written prescriptions or refill requests and verify that information is complete and accurate.

  • Prepack bulk medicines, fill bottles with prescribed medications and type and affix labels.

  • Answer phones, responding to questions or requests.

  • Assist customers by answering simple questions, locating items or referring them to the pharmacist for medication information.

  • Price and file prescriptions that have been filled.

  • Maintain proper storage and security conditions for drugs.

  • Establish and maintain patient profiles, including lists of medications taken by individual patients.

  • Order, label and count stock of medications, chemicals or supplies and enter inventory data into computer.

  • Receive and store incoming supplies, verify quantities against invoices, check for outdated medications in current inventory and inform supervisors of stock needs and shortages.

  • Mix pharmaceutical preparations according to written prescriptions.

Skills and Abilities Needed to Perform Job:

Knowledge of:

  • Accounting software used for billing and reimbursement.

  • Data base user interface and query software (drug compatibility)

  • Medical software (MEDITECH, pharmaceutical, patient record maintenance, etc.)

  • Inventory management software.

  • And use of analytical or scientific software.

  • Principles and processes for providing customer and personal services.

  • The information and techniques needed to diagnose and treat human injuries, disease and deformities.

  • Mathematics—arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics and their applications.

  • And use of Microsoft software (Office, Excel, Work Outlook)

  • Near Vision – Ability to see details at close range.

  • Oral Comprehension – Ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented in writing.

  • Written Comprehension – Ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.

  • Problem Sensitivity – Ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong.

  • Speech Recognition – Ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.

  • Information Ordering – Ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules.

  • Deductive Reasoning – Ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.

  • Category Flexibility – Ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.

  • Speech Clarity – Ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.

Desired Work Style Attributes:

  • Attention to details

  • Integrity – Honest and ethical

  • Dependability – Reliable and responsible

  • Cooperation – Pleasant with others

  • Stress Tolerance – Accepting criticism and dealing calming in stressful situations

  • Initiative – Willing to take on responsibilities and challenges

  • Concern for Others – Sensitive to needs of others

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