Schools That Offer Pharmacy Technician Certification Salem AR

How to Select the Right Pharmacy Tech College near Salem Arkansas

Salem AR pharmacy tech counting pillsHaving made the decision to attain your pharmacy technician degree or certificate near Salem AR, you may be pondering how to choose the right school to get your education and training. Naturally the initial step is to locate colleges that offer the diploma or degree that you would like to earn. A number of future students start by looking for colleges that are within commuting distance of their home, and then comparing the cost. While tuition and location are significant concerns when deciding on a college, they are not the sole ones. Qualifications such as reputation and accreditation need to be taken into account also. And if you are interested in attending classes in your home in front of your computer as opposed to in a classroom, then searching for an accredited online school will also be part of your vetting process. We will cover these qualifications and some others that you will need to include when reviewing pharmacy technician schools. But to begin with, let’s discuss what a pharmacy technician does, the certificate and degree options available, and the benefits of online courses.

The Job of Pharmacy Technicians

Salem AR pharmacy technician filling prescriptionPharmacy technicians have many job functions, but their main duty is to dispense prescription medicines. Since they are not licensed, when dispensing prescriptions they must perform under the management of a licensed Salem AR pharmacist. They must also have good customer service skills because they will be interacting directly with customers. Their attention to detail must be absolute when filling prescription drugs per the pharmacist’s directions. And they must have an extensive knowledge of pharmaceutical terms so that they may assist customers with understanding directions for their prescriptions as well as other pharmaceutical literature and information. On the other hand, under no situation should they ever provide medical advice pertaining to medications or anything else. Any such questions would be addressed by the pharmacist. A few of the typical daily duties a pharmacy tech may carry out are:

  • Receive and help customers with prescriptions and other questions
  • Prepare prescription medicines under pharmacist direction
  • Input customer and prescription information into pharmacy computer system
  • Contact customers when their prescriptions are prepared for pick-up
  • Fill out and submit customer insurance claim forms
  • Re-supply shelves and monitor and control inventory

Due to the nature of their profession, pharmacy techs will spend the majority of their working day standing. And working evenings and weekends is also typical, particularly for newer technicians with low seniority. But the payoff for occasional tired and aching feet or at times being required to work off-hours is a very gratifying career helping people with their health and wellness.

Pharmacy Technician Degree Programs

local Salem AR drugstoreIndividuals wishing to enroll in a pharmacy tech program are qualified provided that they have a high school diploma or equivalent. There are basically two alternatives to becoming a tech regardless if you enroll in a community college or a vocational school. The first is to attain a diploma or a certificate, which usually can be accomplished in a year or less. These programs offer an overview to the different facets of pharmacology and pharmaceutical technology and typically include classroom and lab training. Numerous programs also include an internship at {an approved|an accepted Salem AR pharmacy or other facility. The second option is the Associate Degree program which usually involves about two years of studies. Although not required for most entry level positions, it does furnish a more extensive education and can lead to more advanced positions or education in the future. Either program can provide the necessary level of training to pass the Pharmacy Technician Certification Examination should the graduate decide to become certified.

Pharmacist Tech Online Colleges

woman attending online pharmacy technician school in Salem ARPrior to deciding on a pharmacist technician online school, it’s important to realize that most schools do require that a substantial part of the training be conducted in a clinical environment. This is typically fulfilled in an area Salem pharmacy or hospital by means of an internship program. Students often will have the opportunity to work with an experienced pharmacy technician in order to acquire some work place experience. However the balance or non-clinical training can be accessed online in your Salem AR home or via any available computer. This option is more convenient for many students, particularly for those who continue to work while acquiring their degree or certificate. And online programs are sometimes less expensive than traditional options. Tuition and costs for driving and course materials may be decreased significantly. With both the online and the clinical training, a complete education is provided. But not all online programs are accredited, which is critical for obtaining certification and employment (more on accreditation later). So verify that any online program you are reviewing is accredited by an acknowledged accrediting organization, for example the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). If you are dedicated enough to study with a less formal type of education, then online instruction may be the right choice for you.

Pharmacist Tech Certifications Offered

Certification is not required in every state, but many graduates of pharmacy technician colleges elect to get certified so as to be more competitive in the job market. Also, many Salem AR employers will only employ a tech that is certified. There are 2 organizations that provide certification:

  • National Healthcareer Association (NHA).
  • Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB).

The NHA requirements are that the applicant be at least 18 years old, has graduated from high school, has finished a training program, and has at least one year of work experience. The PTCB only requires that the candidate has a high school diploma and passes their examination. Recertification is mandated every 2 years by both programs, which can be fulfilled by performing 20 hours of continuing education.

Points to Ask Pharmacist Technician Colleges

Questions to ask Salem AR pharmacy tech schoolsOnce you have decided whether you wish to obtain a degree or a certificate, and if you prefer to enroll in an online program or attend classes on campus, you can begin to narrow your school options. There are numerous pharmacy technician programs to pick from in the Salem AR area and throughout the USA, so you must create a list of qualifying questions so that you can contrast community colleges and technical schools. As we covered in our introduction, you will undoubtedly first start looking for programs that are within both your financial resources and driving distance from your Salem home. If you are willing to relocate or are have decided to enroll in an online pharmacy tech school, then location may not be critical. But there are many other factors that you must consider in order to adequately compare colleges. The questions below will assist you to gather that information and help you to make your ultimate choice.

Is the Pharmacy Tech Program Accredited? Most pharmacy tech colleges and trade schools have obtained a regional or national accreditation. One of the most highly regarded accrediting agencies is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Colleges earning accreditation from the ASHP have been evaluated and certified to offer a comprehensive quality education. Online schools may additionally obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals solely with distance or online learning. Be sure to check that the degree or certificate program together with the school you pick are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. In addition to helping guarantee that you get a quality education, it can assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not accessible for non-accredited schools. Also, certification may mandate that the training program is accredited. And a number of Salem AR employers will only hire entry level employees that have graduated from an accredited program.

Does the College Ready You for Certification? Certification is not required in all states, but a number of pharmacies prefer that the technicians they hire are certified. The pharmacy tech program needs to prep its students to pass the PTCB or the NHA exam. Students interested in obtaining NHA certification will also need 1 year of job experience. This qualification can be met by taking part in a school sponsored internship program.

Does the College Sponsor Internship Programs? As we previously covered, the NHA requires 1 year of job experience for certification, which can be met by means of an internship program. One of the best ways to acquire hands on clinical experience as a pharmacy tech is to work out in the field. Most pharmacy tech degree or certificate programs also require clinical training in order to graduate and an internship is an excellent way to meet the requirement. Check if the programs have associations with Salem AR area pharmacies, hospitals, or clinics for internship programs.

Does the School Give Job Placement Assistance? Securing that first job in Salem AR after graduation, especially with no prior experience, can be a difficult task without any support. Ask if the colleges you are looking at have job assistance programs. If so, find out what their job placement rates are. A higher job placement rate is an indication that the college has an excellent reputation within the profession generating appeal for its graduates. It also signifies that it has a large network of pharmacy relationships where it can refer graduates.

Where is the Program Located? For a number of students, the college they choose will have to be within travelling distance of their Salem AR residence. Students who have chosen to attend classes online obviously will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of concern. One thing to keep in mind is that if you choose to enroll in a program that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you might have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges commonly charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges often charge a higher tuition for those students that live outside of their districts.

What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the kind of student that likes to sit way in the rear of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will probably prefer a small class size. Smaller classes enable more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the schools you are looking at what the typical teacher to student ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may want to sit in on one or more classes before making your ultimate decision. This will also give you a chance to speak with several of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy technician program as well.

Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must confirm that the pharmacist tech college you ultimately pick can furnish the class schedule you need. This is especially essential if you opt to continue working while you attend classes. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the Salem AR area, verify that they are offered. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, find out if that is an option and how many courses or credit hours you would need to enroll in. Also, ask what the protocol is for making up any classes that you might miss due to illness, work or family emergencies.

Attending a Salem AR Pharmacy Tech School?

If you are planning to attend a Pharmacy Technician Certificate or Degree Program in the Salem Arkansas area, you may find the following information about the location of your future school campus both interesting and informative.

Salem, Arkansas

Get Information on Schools That Offer Pharmacy Technician Certification Salem AR

Salem AR pharmacy stocked medicationsReceiving the ideal pharmacy technician training is a crucial first step to launching your career in a gratifying occupation where assisting customers with their wellness is your purpose. In the past, most pharmacy techs were trained “on the job”. Nowadays, most employers can no longer afford to do this and place a higher importance on hiring formally educated technicians. Training is provided by trade schools, vocational and technical colleges, as well as community colleges. Many pharmacist technician programs incorporate both classroom and clinical work. As we have addressed in this article, it’s necessary to choose a program that is accredited and will prepare you for certification. This is true both for classes online as well as for those attended on campus. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Schools That Offer Pharmacy Technician Certification. But if you make use of our other suggestions you will be able to evaluate programs so that you are certain to make the ideal selection. With the right education and commitment you can reach your goal to become a pharmacist technician in Salem AR.

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