How To Become A Pharmacy Technician Benicia CA

How to Pick the Right Pharmacy Tech Training Program near Benicia California

Benicia CA pharmacy tech counting pillsHaving decided to attain your pharmacy tech degree or certificate near Benicia CA, you may be wondering just how to choose the ideal school to receive your education and training. Usually the first step is to locate colleges that offer the degree or certificate that you are interested in. Many prospective students begin by looking for colleges that are within driving distance of their home, and then comparing the tuitions. While tuition and location are significant factors when selecting a school, they are not the only ones. Qualifications including reputation and accreditation must be considered as well. And if you prefer attending classes in your home by means of your computer as opposed to in a classroom, then searching for an accredited online program will also be included in your vetting process. We will address these qualifications and others that you will want to include when comparing pharmacy technician schools. But first, let’s discuss what a pharmacy technician does, the diploma and degree options available, and the benefits of online classes.

The Job of Pharmacy Techs

Benicia CA pharmacy technician filling prescriptionPharmacy technicians have many job duties, but their principal duty is to dispense prescription medications. Since they are not licensed, when dispensing prescriptions they must operate under the supervision of a licensed Benicia CA pharmacist. They must also have excellent customer service skills because they will be working directly with customers. Their attention to detail must be absolute when preparing prescription medicines per the pharmacist’s directions. And they must have a comprehensive knowledge of pharmaceutical terminology so that they can help customers with understanding directions for their prescriptions in addition to other pharmaceutical information and literature. However, under no situation should they ever provide medical advice pertaining to prescriptions or anything else. Any such questions would be handled by the pharmacist. A few of the common daily duties a pharmacy tech may carry out are:

  • Greet and help customers with prescriptions and other questions
  • Dispense prescription drugs under pharmacist supervision
  • Add customer and prescription data into pharmacy computer system
  • Contact customers when their medications are ready for pick-up
  • Complete and submit customer insurance claim forms
  • Stock shelves and audit and control inventory

Due to the nature of their profession, pharmacy technicians will spend most of their working day standing. And working evenings and weekends is also typical, especially for newer techs with lower seniority. But the reward for occasional tired and aching feet or occasionally being required to work off-hours is a very rewarding career helping people with their health and wellness.

Pharmacy Technician Degrees

local Benicia CA drugstoreStudents desiring to enroll in a pharmacy technician school are qualified provided that they have a high school diploma or equivalent. There are basically two alternatives to training to be 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 completed in a year or less. These programs present an overview to the different facets of pharmacology and pharmaceutical technology and usually include classroom and lab training. A number of programs also require an internship at {an approved|an accepted Benicia CA pharmacy or other facility. The second alternative is the Associate Degree program which typically takes about 2 years of studies. Although not needed for most entry level positions, it does furnish a more expansive education and opens doors to more advanced positions or education in the future. Each program can provide the necessary level of training to pass the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam should the graduate decide to get certified.

Pharmacist Technician Programs Online

woman attending online pharmacy technician school in Benicia CAPrior to selecting a pharmacy technician online program, it’s important to understand that the majority of programs do require a portion of the training be carried out in a clinical environment. This is commonly fulfilled in an area Benicia pharmacy or health center through an internship program. Students in most cases will have the opportunity to work under an experienced pharmacy tech so as to receive some work place experience. Fortunately the balance or non-clinical training can be taken over the internet in your Benicia CA home or via any available computer. This alternative is more convenient for many students, notably for those who continue to work while attaining their degree or certificate. And online colleges are often more affordable than classroom options. Tuition and costs for commuting and study materials can be reduced substantially. With both the online and the clinical training, a complete education is offered. But not all online programs are accredited, which is important for securing employment and certification (more on accreditation later). So confirm that each online college you are looking at is accredited by a recognized accrediting agency, such as the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). If you are disciplined enough to study with a less structured form of education, then online training might be the right choice for you.

Pharmacy Tech Certifications Offered

Certification is not required in all states, but numerous graduates of pharmacy technician schools choose to get certified so as to be more qualified when seeking employment. Also, many Benicia CA pharmacies will only hire a tech that has earned certification. 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 completed a training program, and has at least one year of professional experience. The PTCB only requires that the candidate has graduated high school and passes their exam. Recertification is required every two years by each program, which can be fulfilled by completing 20 hours of continuing education.

Questions to Ask Pharmacy Technician Colleges

Questions to ask Benicia CA pharmacy tech schoolsAfter you have determined whether you want to attain a certificate or degree, and if you prefer to enroll in an online college or go to classes on campus, you can start to narrow your school options. There are numerous pharmacist tech colleges to select from in the Benicia CA area and throughout the Country, so you should create a list of qualifying questions so that you can contrast colleges and vocational schools. As we discussed in our introduction, you will most likely first start looking for programs that are within both your financial budget and driving distance from your Benicia home. If you are able to relocate or are have decided to enroll in an online pharmacy tech program, then location may not be critical. But there are many other factors that you must consider so that you may properly compare programs. The questions below will assist you in collecting that information and help you to make your final decision.

Is the Pharmacy Technician College Accredited? Most pharmacy technician colleges and trade schools have earned a national or regional accreditation. Among the most highly regarded accrediting agencies is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Colleges earning accreditation from the ASHP have been screened and certified to offer a complete quality education. Online colleges may additionally obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals solely with distance or online learning. Don’t forget to verify that the degree or certificate program as well as the school you select are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Besides helping make sure that you get a quality education, it can assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not offered for non-accredited colleges. Also, certification may mandate that the training program is accredited. And many Benicia CA employers will only hire entry level employees that have graduated from an accredited program.

Does the School Ready You for Certification? Certification is not required in every state, but a number of employers desire that the techs they employ be certified. The pharmacy technician program should prepare its students to pass the NHA or the PTCB exam. Students interested in obtaining NHA certification will also need one year of job experience. This qualification can be met by taking part in a school sponsored internship program.

Does the School Offer Internship Programs? As we just covered, the NHA mandates 1 year of experience for certification, which can be met by means of an internship program. Perhaps the best way to obtain practical clinical experience as a pharmacy technician is to work out in the field. Most pharmacy technician certificate or degree programs also require practical training prior to graduation and an internship is an excellent way to fulfill the requirement. Check if the programs have associations with Benicia CA area pharmacies, clinics, or hospitals for internship programs.

Does the School Give Job Placement Assistance? Finding that first position in Benicia CA after graduation, particularly with no experience, can be a challenging endeavor without any support. Ask if the colleges you are reviewing have job assistance programs. If so, find out what their job placement rates are. A high job placement rate is an indicator that the school has an excellent reputation within the field generating demand for its graduates. It also means that it has a large network of employer relationships where it can refer graduates.

Where is the Program Located? For many students, the school they pick will have to be within driving distance of their Benicia CA residence. Those who have opted to attend classes online naturally will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of importance. One thing to consider is that if you decide to enroll in a program that is out of state or even 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 normally charge a higher tuition to those students that don’t reside within their districts.

What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of person that prefers to sit way in the back of class or hide in the crowd, you will likely want a small class size. Small classes enable more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the colleges you are researching what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may want to monitor one or more classes before making your ultimate determination. This will also give you an opportunity to speak with some of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy tech program also.

Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must confirm that the pharmacy tech college you finally pick can offer the class schedule you need. This is particularly crucial if you choose to continue working while attending classes. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Benicia CA area, make sure that they are offered. If you can only attend part-time, verify if that is an alternative and how many credit hours or courses you would need to carry. Also, ask what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss as a result of illness, work or family obligations.

Attending a Benicia CA Pharmacy Tech School?

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

Benicia, California

Benicia (/bəˈniːʃə/ bə-NEE-shə; bə-NI-shə; Spanish pronunciation: [beˈnisja]) is a waterside city in Solano County, California, located in the North Bay region of the San Francisco Bay Area. It served as the state capital for nearly thirteen months from 1853 to 1854. The population was 26,997 at the 2010 census. The city is located along the north bank of the Carquinez Strait. Benicia is just east of Vallejo and across the strait from Martinez. Elizabeth Patterson has served as Mayor of Benicia since 2007.

The town is divided into four areas: the East Side (east of First Street), the West Side (west of First Street), Southampton (north of 780), and the industrial park. Most of the town's older homes are on the east and west sides. Southampton contains primarily single-family housing developments and condominiums, most of which were built between 1970 and 2000. The East Side includes the Benicia Arsenal, a former United States Army armory, which was bought by the city and is now used for a variety of purposes, most notably as live-work spaces for artists. The Arsenal is home to several historic (ca. 1860) landmark buildings such as The Clock Tower, the Camel Barn, and the Jefferson Street Mansion. The industrial park lies to the northeast of the residential areas of the city, and includes the Valero oil refinery. The Benicia State Recreation Area is on the far west edge of the city.

The main retail area in Benicia is First Street, which attracts out-of-town antique and boutique shoppers and those seeking small-town, historic charm. In 1987 Benicia was selected to participate in the California Main Street Program.

Connections to Benicia include Interstate 680 from Martinez to the south and Cordelia Junction (Fairfield) to the north, and Interstate 780, Columbus Parkway, and other local roads from Vallejo to the west. Amtrak also runs past the city north towards Sacramento, but the nearest train station lies in Martinez across the Carquinez Strait. Railroad tracks carrying Amtrak and Union Pacific Railroad lines cross the strait alongside the Benicia–Martinez Bridge.

Get Information on How To Become A Pharmacy Technician Benicia CA

Benicia CA pharmacy stocked medicationsGetting the ideal pharmacist technician training is an important first step to beginning your career in a fulfilling occupation where assisting people with their health is your objective. Traditionally, many pharmacist techs were taught “on the job”. These days, most employers can no longer afford to do this and much prefer to hire formally trained technicians. Training is offered by technical colleges, vocational and trade schools, as well as community colleges. Most pharmacy tech schools include both clinical and classroom training. As we have covered in this article, it’s necessary to choose a program that is accredited and will prepare you for certification. This is true both for online classes and for those attended on campus. You originally came to this website due to an interest in How To Become A Pharmacy Technician. But if you make use of our other tips you will be able to compare colleges so that you are certain to make the right choice. With the proper education and dedication you can reach your goal of becoming a pharmacist tech in Benicia CA.

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