Certified Pharmacy Technician Training Columbia AL

How to Enroll In the Right Pharmacy Tech Course near Columbia Alabama

Columbia AL pharmacy technician dispersing prescriptionsHaving decided to attain your pharmacy tech certificate or degree near Columbia AL, you may be wondering just how to pick the best college to get your education and training. Usually the first step is to find schools that offer the degree or certificate that you are interested in. A number of prospective students begin by looking for schools that are within driving distance of their residence, and then comparing the tuitions. While tuition and location are significant concerns when choosing a school, they are not the sole ones. Qualifiers including reputation and accreditation must be evaluated as well. And if you prefer attending classes at home by means of your computer instead of in a classroom, then finding 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 comparing pharmacy technician schools. But to begin with, let’s take a look at what a pharmacy technician does, the diploma and degree options available, and the advantages of online classes.

The Responsibilities of a Pharmacy Tech

Columbia AL pharmacy tech filling prescriptionPharmacy technicians have multiple job duties, but their principal responsibility is to dispense prescription medicines. Since they are not licensed, when filling prescriptions they must perform under the management of a licensed Columbia AL pharmacist. They must also have good customer service skills because they will be dealing directly with customers. Their attention to detail must be absolute when filling prescription medications per the pharmacist’s instructions. And they must have an extensive knowledge of pharmaceutical terminology so that they may help customers with understanding directions for their medications as well as other pharmaceutical information and literature. On the other hand, under no circumstance should they ever give medical advice relating to medications or anything else. Any such questions should be addressed by the pharmacist. Some of the regular daily tasks a pharmacy tech might carry out are:

  • Receive and assist customers with prescriptions and other questions
  • Prepare prescription drugs under pharmacist direction
  • Enter customer and prescription information into pharmacy computer system
  • Contact customers when their prescriptions are prepared for pick-up
  • Complete and submit customer insurance claim forms
  • Re-supply shelves and audit and control inventory

As a consequence of their profession, pharmacy technicians will spend the majority of their working day standing. And working evenings and weekends is also very common, especially for newer technicians with low seniority. But the reward for occasional tired and aching feet or sometimes having to work off-hours is an extremely satisfying career assisting people with their health and well-being.

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Pharmacy Technician Degrees

Columbia AL pharmacy techStudents wishing to enroll in a pharmacy technician school are qualified as long as they have a high school diploma or a GED. There are generally two options to becoming a tech whether you enroll in a community college or a vocational school. The first is to attain a certificate or a diploma, which normally can be accomplished in a year or less. These programs present an overview to the various elements of pharmacology and pharmaceutical technology and generally include classroom and lab training. Many programs also require an internship at {an approved|an accepted Columbia AL pharmacy or other facility. The second alternative is the Associate Degree program which generally requires about 2 years of studies. Although not needed for most entry level positions, it does furnish a more expansive education and can lead to more advanced positions or education down the road. Each program should furnish the proper level of training to pass the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam should the graduate choose to get certified.

Pharmacy Tech Online Colleges

Columbia AL student attending online pharmacy tech courseBefore choosing a pharmacy tech online school, it’s necessary to realize that most programs do require that a substantial part of the training be carried out in a clinical setting. This is commonly fulfilled in a local Columbia pharmacy or hospital by means of an internship program. Students often will have the benefit of working under a seasoned pharmacy tech so as to acquire some real world experience. However the balance or non-clinical training can be taken online in your Columbia AL home or via any available computer. This option is more accommodating for most students, especially for those who continue to work while attaining their certificate or degree. And online schools are frequently less expensive than traditional options. Tuition and expenses for commuting and study materials may be decreased significantly. With both the online and the clinical training, a comprehensive education is offered. But not all online colleges are accredited, which is important for obtaining certification and employment (more on accreditation later). So verify that any online school you are considering is accredited by a recognized accrediting agency, such as the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). If you are dedicated enough to learn with a less supervised form of education, then online training may be the best solution for you.

Pharmacy Technician Certification Choices

Certification is not required in every state, but many graduates of pharmacy technician schools elect to become certified in order to be more competitive when seeking employment. Additionally, a number of Columbia AL pharmacies will only employ a technician that has earned certification. There are 2 organizations that provide certification:

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

The NHA requires that the candidate be 18 years or older, be a high school graduate, has finished a training program, and has one or more years of work experience. The PTCB only requires that the candidate has graduated high school and passes their exam. Recertification is called for every two years by each program, which may be fulfilled by performing 20 hours of continuing education.

Questions to Ask Pharmacy Tech Programs

Questions to ask Columbia AL pharmacy technician schoolsOnce you have determined whether you want to earn a certificate or degree, and if you want to enroll in an online school or go to classes on campus, you can start to narrow your school alternatives. There are a large number of pharmacy tech schools to select from in the Columbia AL area and throughout the Country, so you should develop a list of qualifying questions so that you can contrast colleges and trade schools. As we discussed in our introduction, you will undoubtedly initially look for programs that are within both your financial budget and driving distance from your Columbia residence. If you are willing to move or are have decided to enroll in an online pharmacy tech college, then location may not be significant. But there are several other factors that you should take into consideration in order to effectively compare programs. The following questions will assist you in gathering that information and help you to make your final choice.

Is the Pharmacy Tech School Accredited? The majority of pharmacy tech programs and vocational schools have obtained a national or regional accreditation. One of the most respected accrediting agencies is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Programs earning accreditation from the ASHP have been evaluated and certified to offer a comprehensive superior education. Online programs may also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals only with distance or online education. Make sure to check that the certificate or degree program in addition to the school you select are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Along with helping guarantee that you obtain a quality education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited schools. Also, certification might mandate that the program of training is accredited. And many Columbia AL employers will only hire entry level employees that have earned a degree from an accredited school.

Does the School Prepare You for Certification? Certification is not required in all states, but many employers desire that the techs they employ are certified. The pharmacy technician program needs to prepare its students to pass the NHA or the PTCB exam. Students planning on obtaining NHA certification will also need 1 year of professional experience. This requirement may be met by participating in a school sponsored internship program.

Does the College Sponsor Internship Programs? As we just discussed, the NHA requires a year of professional experience for certification, which may be fulfilled by means of an internship program. Perhaps the best way to get hands on clinical experience as a pharmacy technician is to train out in the field. Most pharmacy technician degree or certificate programs also require clinical training in order to graduate and an internship is a great way to meet the requirement. Check if the colleges have associations with Columbia AL area pharmacies, clinics, or hospitals for internship programs.

Does the College Provide Job Placement Assistance? Finding that first job in Columbia AL upon graduation, especially with no professional experience, can be a challenging task without any help. Find out if the schools you are looking at have job assistance programs. If they do, ask what their job placement rates are. A high job placement rate is an indicator that the school has a good reputation within the field creating demand for its graduates. It also indicates that it has a substantial network of pharmacy contacts where it can refer graduates.

Where is the Program Located? For a lot of students, the college they choose will have to be within commuting distance of their Columbia AL residence. Students who have decided to attend online classes naturally will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of importance. Something to consider is that if you choose to enroll in a college that is out of state or even out of your local area, you may be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges generally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges usually charge a higher tuition to those students that don’t reside within their districts.

How Big are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of student that likes to sit far in the back of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will likely prefer a small class size. Small classes allow for more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the colleges you are researching what the average teacher to student ratio is for their classes. If practical you may prefer to sit in on one or more classes before making your final determination. This will also give you an opportunity to speak with several of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacist tech program also.

Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And last you need to verify that the pharmacy tech school you ultimately select can provide the class schedule you need. This is particularly important if you choose to continue working while you attend school. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Columbia AL area, make certain that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, verify if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would need to enroll in. Also, find out what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss as a result of work, illness or family obligations.

Certified Pharmacy Technician Training Columbia Alabama

Columbia AL pharmacy medicine supply shelvesGetting the right pharmacy tech training is a crucial first step to beginning your career in a fulfilling occupation where helping customers with their wellness is your objective. Traditionally, most pharmacist techs were taught “on the job”. These days, most pharmacies can no longer operate this way and place a higher importance on hiring formally educated technicians. Training is provided by technical colleges, vocational and trade schools, as well as community colleges. Most pharmacist tech colleges include both classroom and laboratory training. As we have discussed in this article, it’s essential to choose a program that is accredited and will prepare you for certification. This applies both for classes online as well as for those attended on campus. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Certified Pharmacy Technician Training and wanting more information on the topic Classes To Take For Pharmacy Technician. But if you make use of our additional tips you will be able to evaluate colleges so that you are sure to make the ideal selection. With the right training and dedication you can achieve your goal to become a pharmacy tech in Columbia AL.

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    Al Columbia

    At the age of 18[1] Columbia was hired to assist Bill Sienkiewicz in illustrating Alan Moore's ambitious Big Numbers series. When Sienkiewicz withdrew from the series in 1990 after the release of the first two issues, Moore and his backers at Tundra Publishing asked the young Columbia to become its sole artist. In 1992, with no more issues released, Columbia himself left the project under a cloud of rumors and accusations, including claims that he had destroyed his own artwork for Big Numbers #4.[2][3][4] Columbia declined to address the subject publicly for several years, writing in a 1998 letter to The Comics Journal that "I could easily launch into a tirade about the extensive horror of my Tundra experience, but I much prefer the very entertaining and conflicting accounts already in circulation."[5] In later statements he confirmed that he destroyed his artwork but disputed other claims by the principal figures in the fiasco.[6][7]

    In a 2011 article reflecting on his Big Numbers experience, Sienkiewicz wrote that he and Columbia had long since reconciled over the matter, and that he was content to "[c]halk the feud up to the folly of youth."[8]

    Columbia's first solo comic book, Doghead, was released by Tundra Publishing in 1992. It contains three short stories, two in black and white and one in full color. Paul Gravett described it as "three dark, stylish tales, indebted to Sienkiewicz and McKean but with hints of [Columbia's] emerging singular identity".[9]

     

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