Pharmacy Technician

Pharmacy Technician

As pharmacies expand patient care services, the role of and need for pharmacy technicians will also expand.  Pharmacy Technicians are highly skilled individuals who play a critical role in pharmacies. They assist Pharmacists with day-to-day operations so that Pharmacists can spend the time they need to provide quality counseling and care to their patients.

Pharmacy technicians who work in retail or mail-order pharmacies have varying responsibilities, depending on state rules and regulations. Technicians receive written prescriptions or requests for prescription refills from patients. They also may receive prescriptions sent electronically from the doctor’s office. To prepare the prescription, technicians must retrieve, count, pour, weigh, measure and sometimes mix the medication. Technicians may establish and maintain patient profiles, prepare insurance claim forms, and stock and take inventory of prescription and over-the-counter medications.

In hospitals, nursing homes and assisted-living facilities, technicians have added responsibilities. They read patient charts and prepare and deliver the medicine to patients. The pharmacist must check the order before it is delivered to the patient. The technician then copies the information about the prescribed medication onto the patient’s profile.

Many states required licensure in order to perform pharmacy technician work. The West Virginia Board of Pharmacy currently requires licensure of all pharmacy technicians. Beginning July 1, 2015, newly hired technicians in West Virginia must be nationally certified. Upon completion of the PhT program, graduates will be eligible to sit for the national board examination.  For more information about West Virginia requirements and the national certification exam, visit www.wvbop.com and www.ptcb.org.

What You’ll Learn
Pharmacy technician students will learn to verify that information on the prescription is complete and accurate, to prepare a prescription, and to retrieve, count, pour, weigh, measure, and sometimes mix medications. Successful completion of the PhT program will include a clinical internship at an affiliated health-care and retail facility. See the current advising sheet for more details.  Learn about our one-year certificate in Pharmacy Technician Certificate.

Credits Required:  63 hours

Credential Earned:  Associate of Applied Science

Career Settings
Pharmacy technicians work in retail or mail-order pharmacies, hospitals, nursing homes and assisted-living facilities. With the appropriate amount of training and experience, pharmacy technicians may be promoted to supervisory roles, may seek specialization (e.g. oncology, nuclear pharmacy), or may pursue further education and training to become a pharmacist.  Some technicians gain specialized skills in sterile products admixture, pharmacy automation and health information systems.

Potential Employers

  • A+ Pharmacy
  • CVS
  • Fruth Pharmacy
  • Griffith & Feil
  • Walgreens

Program Outcomes

-Assist the pharmacist in collecting, organizing, and evaluating information for direct
patient care, medication use review, and departmental management.  PHT 201, 204, 208, 216
-Receive and screen prescriptions/medication orders for completeness and authenticity. PHT 201, 204, 208, 250
-Prepare medications for distribution. PHT 201, 204, 206, 208 250, 260, 281
-Verify the measurements, preparation, and/or packaging of medications produced by
other technicians. PHT 204, 208, 250
-Distribute medications. PHT 201, 204, 250
- Assist the pharmacist in the administration of immunizations. PHT 281
-Assist the pharmacist in the identification of patients who desire/require counseling to
optimize the use of medications, equipment, and devices. PHT 201, 204, 250, 281
- Initiate, verify, assist in the adjudication of, and collect payment and/or initiate billing for
pharmacy services and goods. PHT 204, 260
-Purchase pharmaceuticals, devices, and supplies according to an established purchasing
program. PHT 260
- Control the inventory of medications, equipment, and devices according to an established
plan. PHT 216, 226, 260
-Assist the pharmacist in monitoring the practice site and/or service area for compliance
with federal, state, and local laws; regulations; and professional standards. PHT 201, 204, 260
-Maintain pharmacy equipment and facilities. PHT 204, 208, 250, 260
- Assist the pharmacist in preparing, storing, and distributing investigational medication
products. PHT 250
-Assist the pharmacist in the monitoring of medication therapy. PHT 201, 204, 250, 281
-Participate in the pharmacy department’s process for preventing medication
misadventures. PHT 250
-Take personal responsibilities for assisting the pharmacist in improving direct patient
care. PHT 250, 281
- Display ethical conduct in all job-related activities. PHT 201
-Maintain an image appropriate for the profession of pharmacy. PHT 201, 204, 206, 208, 216, 226, 250, 260, 281
-Resolve conflicts through negotiation. PHT 250
-Understand the principles for managing change. PHT 260
-Appreciate the need to adapt direct patient care to meet the needs of diversity. PHT 204, 250, 260
-Appreciate the benefits of active involvement in local, state, and national technician and
other pharmacy organizations. PHT 204, 250
-Appreciate the value of obtaining technician certification. PHT 201, 204, 250
- Understand the importance of and resources for staying current with changes in pharmacy
practice. PHT 250
-Communicate clearly when speaking and or in writing. PHT 201, 204, 208, 216, 226, 250, 260, 281
- Maximize work efficiency through the use of technology. PHT 201, 204, 208, 250, 260
-Efficiently solve problems commonly encountered in one’s own work. PHT 204, 206, 208, 250