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Pharmacy Jobs That Don't Require A Degree

Updated on March 28, 2011

Although some Pharmacy Technicians only receive on-the-job training, pharmacies generally prefer those who have completed an accredited training program, and especially those who have passed their national certification exam. There are, at present, no Federal Requirements concerning training for Pharmacy Technicians but more and more states are beginning to demand formal training.

Training courses for Pharmacy Technicians can be taken in colleges, some hospitals and the U.S. Military. Formal training courses cover both academic subjects, as well as related practical applications. Some training courses may offer a period of experience in a pharmacy. Courses cover, among others, subjects such as terminology, ethics, pharmacy law, techniques, and record keeping. Depending on the length of the course taken, graduates will receive either a certificate or an Associate's degree.

Once you have graduated from an accredited training course, you are eligible to take the National Certification Exam. If you have taken only on-the-job training, your continued employment may be conditional on your obtaining certification. Some employers may pay the cost of the certification exam. As with any job, it is always preferable to get the best education you possibly can.

Pharmacy Technicians work in independent pharmacies, drug chains, grocery stores, department stores and hospitals. Technicians work in clean well-lit environments.

To get an in-demand job as a Pharmacy Technician, you must have good communication skills, be willing and able to follow directions, and be mentally alert, well organized, discreet,  and responsible. Pharmacy Technicians must be able to work harmoniously as part of a team and interact with the public in a professional knowledgeable and compassionate manner. As they spend most of the day standing, they must be physically fit.

A job as a Pharmacy Technician has a variety of duties. They include receiving prescriptions, checking the supplied information, securing the proper medication, counting and packaging pills and affixing correct labeling. After the Pharmacist in charge has checked the prescription for accuracy, the Technician may deliver it to the customer and explaining dosage and directions. Pharmacy Technicians also keep patient records, deal with the intake and storage of stock, and preform other general administrative duties.

If you are still in High School and want to get a job as a Pharmacy Technician, it would be wise to strengthen your skills in math as well as your written and verbal skills. Take any related health or science courses available. Any volunteer experience in a related field would also be an asset.

For more information on how to get a job as a Pharmacy Technician, speak to your local Pharmacist and, for training programs, contact your local Community or Technical College, or your Recruiting Officer, if you are in the Armed Forces.


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