Pharmacy Technician Schools | Get Your Certificate or Degree – Loachapoka AL

How to Find the Right Pharmacist Tech Program near Loachapoka 36865

Loachapoka AL pharmacy tech preparing prescriptionHaving made the decision to attain your pharmacy technician degree or certificate near Loachapoka AL, you may be wondering just how to pick the right school to get your education and training. Usually the first step is to find colleges that offer the degree or diploma that you would like to earn. Many potential students start by looking for colleges that are within commuting distance of their home, and then comparing the cost. While cost and location are important factors when deciding on a school, they are not the only ones. Qualifications such as accreditation and reputation must be evaluated as well. And if you are interested in studying in your home in front of your computer instead of in a classroom, then searching for an accredited online school will also be included in your vetting process. We will go over these qualifiers and some others that you will want to include when reviewing pharmacy technician schools. But to begin with, let’s take a look at what a pharmacy tech does, the diploma and degree options available, and the advantages of online programs.

The Responsibilities of a Pharmacy Technician

Loachapoka AL pharmacy technician dispensing medsPharmacy techs have many job responsibilities, but their primary duty is to dispense prescription medications. Because they are not licensed, when filling prescriptions they must work under the management of a licensed Loachapoka AL pharmacist. They must also have good customer service skills since they will be dealing directly with customers. Their attention to detail must be precise when filling prescription drugs per the pharmacist’s directions. And they need to have an extensive knowledge of pharmaceutical terms so that they can assist customers with understanding instructions for their medications in addition to other pharmaceutical information and literature. However, under no circumstance should they ever offer medical advice pertaining to prescriptions or anything else. Any such questions would be addressed by the pharmacist. Several of the common daily duties a pharmacy technician may perform are:

  • Greet and help customers with prescriptions and other questions
  • Prepare prescription medications under pharmacist supervision
  • Input prescription and customer data 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 monitor and manage inventory

As a consequence of their profession, pharmacy technicians will spend the majority of their working day standing. And working weekends and evenings is also very common, especially for newer techs with lower seniority. But the payoff for occasional tired and aching feet or at times being required to work after hours is a very satisfying career assisting people with their health and wellness.

Pharmacy Tech Certificates and Degrees

Loachapoka AL pharmacy medication supply shelvesIndividuals wishing to enroll in a pharmacy technician school are qualified as long as they have a high school diploma or equivalent. There are generally 2 options to training to be a tech whether you enroll in a community college or a trade school. The first is to earn a certificate or a diploma, which normally can be accomplished in a year or less. These programs offer an introduction to the different elements of pharmacology and pharmaceutical technology and generally include classroom and lab training. A number of programs also require an internship at {an approved|an accepted Loachapoka AL pharmacy or other facility. The second alternative is the Associate Degree program which usually takes about 2 years of studies. Although not needed for most entry level positions, it does provide a more expansive education and can lead to more advanced positions or education down the road. Either program can furnish the proper level of training to pass the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam should the graduate choose to get certified.

Pharmacist Technician Certification Options

Certification is not required in every state, but a large number of graduates of pharmacy tech colleges opt to get certified so as to be more qualified in the job market. Also, a number of Loachapoka AL pharmacies will only employ a tech that has earned certification. There are 2 organizations that offer certification:

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

The NHA requirements are 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 applicant has graduated high school and passes their exam. Recertification is mandated every 2 years by both programs, which can be met by performing 20 hours of continuing education.

Pharmacist Technician Online Colleges

woman attending pharmacy tech school online in Loachapoka ALBefore selecting a pharmacy tech online program, it’s important to understand that the majority of schools do require a portion of the training be conducted in a clinical setting. This is usually fulfilled in an area Loachapoka pharmacy or hospital by means of an internship program. Students often will have the opportunity to work under an experienced pharmacy tech in order to obtain some work place experience. Fortunately the non-clinical portion of the training can be accessed online in your Loachapoka AL home or via any available computer. This option is more accommodating for many students, particularly for those who continue to work while earning their certificate or degree. And online colleges are frequently more affordable than classroom options. Tuition and expenses for driving and study materials may be reduced substantially. With both the online and the clinical training, a comprehensive education is provided. But not all online schools are accredited, which is critical for obtaining certification and employment (more on accreditation later). So confirm that any online program you are reviewing is accredited by a recognized accrediting organization, for instance the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). If you are dedicated enough to learn with a less formal type of education, then online classes may be the ideal choice for you.

What to Ask Pharmacist Tech Programs

Once you have decided whether you wish to earn a degree or a certificate, and if you want to enroll in an online school or go to classes on campus, you can start to narrow your school options. There are many pharmacist technician programs to pick from in the Loachapoka AL area and throughout the USA, so you must create a list of qualifying questions so that you can compare colleges and technical schools. As we addressed in our introduction, you will probably initially look for colleges that are within both your financial resources and driving distance from your Loachapoka home. If you are able to move or are going to enroll in an online pharmacy tech college, then location may not be important. But there are many other factors that you should consider so that you may adequately compare colleges. The questions below will help you in collecting that information and help you to make your final choice.

Is the Pharmacist Tech School Accredited? The majority of pharmacy technician programs and vocational schools have obtained a regional or national accreditation. One of the most respected accrediting organizations is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Colleges earning accreditation from the ASHP have been screened and certified to offer a complete superior education. Online colleges may additionally obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals exclusively with distance or online learning. Be sure to confirm that the degree or certificate program in addition to the college you choose are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Besides helping make sure that you obtain a quality education, it can assist in getting financial aid or student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited colleges. Also, certification might require that the training program is accredited. And a number of Loachapoka AL pharmacies will only hire entry level employees that have graduated from an accredited program.

Does the School Prep You for Certification? Certification is not required in every state, but many pharmacies desire that the techs they hire be certified. The pharmacist tech school should ready its students to pass the PTCB or the NHA exam. Students planning on obtaining NHA certification will also need 1 year of professional experience. This qualification may be fulfilled by taking part in a college sponsored internship program.

Does the School Provide Internship Programs? As we previously discussed, the NHA requires 1 year of experience for certification, which may be satisfied through an internship program. Perhaps the best way to acquire 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 an excellent way to fulfill the requirement. Find out if the schools have associations with Loachapoka AL area pharmacies, hospitals, or clinics for internship programs.

Does the School Offer Job Placement Assistance? Finding that first position in Loachapoka AL upon graduation, especially with no experience, can be a challenging endeavor without any assistance. Find out if the colleges you are researching have job placement programs. If so, ask what their job placement rates are. A high job placement rate is an indication that the school has a good reputation within the profession creating demand for its graduates. It also means that it has a sizable network of employer relationships where it can place graduates.

Where is the Program Located? For many students, the school they decide on will need to be within commuting distance of their Loachapoka AL home. Individuals who have chosen to attend online classes obviously will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of concern. Something to consider is that if you choose to enroll in a program that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you might need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges commonly charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges usually charge a higher tuition for those students that live outside of their districts.

How Large are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of person that prefers to sit far in the rear of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will likely want a small class size. Smaller classes allow for more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the colleges you are looking at what the typical student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may prefer to sit in on one or more classes before making your final decision. This will also give you an opportunity to converse with a few of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy tech program also.

Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must verify that the pharmacist tech college you finally select can furnish the class schedule you need. This is especially essential if you opt to continue working while attending classes. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the Loachapoka AL area, make sure that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, verify if that is an option and how many courses or credit hours you would have to carry. Also, learn what the protocol is for making up any classes that you may miss as a result of work, illness or family emergencies.

Enrolling in a Loachapoka AL Pharmacy Tech School?

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

Loachapoka, Alabama

Loachapoka (/ˌloʊ.tʃəˈpoʊ.kə/) is a town in Lee County, Alabama, United States. It is located less than 1/2 mile west of the City of Auburn and approximately 5 miles West of Auburn University, in west-central Lee County. The population was 180 as of the 2010 census. It is part of the Auburn metropolitan area.

The name "Loachapoka" means "turtle killing place" in Muskogee, with locha meaning "turtle" and poga meaning "killing place."[3] In literature, Lochapoka was the destination of the colonists in James H. Street's 1940 novel Oh, Promised Land.

Loachapoka is governed by a mayor and 5 town council members. However, in the most recent municipal election (2016), no incumbents submitted qualifying paperwork to run for re-election. Therefore, the only citizen that did qualify for the ballot became mayor-elect, as per state law, and this was confirmed by the AL Director of Elections.[4] When the mayor-elect brought the issue to light, several town, county and state officials worked together in a poorly hatched plan to improperly disqualify the only candidate to follow the law for qualification, as referenced in several newspaper articles and audio recordings of town hall meetings.[4][5][6] The corruption portrayed in this series of events reflect a pattern of politics in Alabama that has been commonplace for many years, as reported in the Harvard Political Review.[7]

Choose the Best Pharmacy Tech School Loachapoka AL

Loachapoka AL corner drugstoreReceiving the ideal pharmacist technician training is a critical first step to launching your career in a fulfilling profession where assisting customers with their wellness is your mission. Traditionally, most pharmacy technicians were taught “on the job”. These days, the majority of pharmacies can no longer afford to do this and place a higher importance on hiring formally trained techs. Training is offered by technical colleges, vocational and trade schools, as well as community colleges. A large number of pharmacy technician programs incorporate both classroom and laboratory work. As we have covered in this article, it’s essential to choose a school that is accredited and will prepare you for certification. This holds true both for online classes and for those attended on campus. And if you make use of our other tips you will be able to compare schools so that you are sure to make the right choice. With the proper education and dedication you can achieve your goal of becoming a pharmacy tech in Loachapoka AL.

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