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Pharmacy Technician Schools | Get Your Certificate or Degree – Waverly VA

How to Choose a Pharmacist Tech School near Waverly 23890

Waverly VA pharmacy tech preparing prescriptionHaving decided to attain your pharmacy tech certificate or degree near Waverly VA, you may be thinking about just how to select the right school to get your education and training. Naturally the first step is to locate colleges that offer the degree or certificate that you are interested in. Many future students begin by looking for colleges that are within driving distance of their residence, and then comparing the cost. While cost and location are important concerns when picking a college, they are not the sole ones. Qualifications such as reputation and accreditation should be evaluated as well. And if you are interested in attending classes at home in front of your computer as opposed to in a classroom, then finding an accredited online program will also be part of your vetting process. We will address these qualifiers and some others that you will need to include when comparing pharmacy technician schools. But first, let’s take a look at what a pharmacy technician does, the degree and certification options available, and the advantages of online classes.

The Role of Pharmacy Technicians

Waverly VA pharmacy technician dispensing medsPharmacy technicians have numerous job duties, but their primary responsibility is to dispense prescription medicines. Since they are not licensed, when filling prescriptions they must work under the supervision of a licensed Waverly VA pharmacist. They must also have excellent customer service skills because they will be dealing directly with customers. Their attention to detail must be precise when preparing prescription medications per the pharmacist’s directions. And they must have a comprehensive knowledge of pharmaceutical terms so that they may help customers with understanding instructions for their prescriptions as well as other pharmaceutical information and literature. On the other hand, under no circumstance should they ever provide medical advice regarding prescriptions or anything else. All such questions would be handled by the pharmacist. Several of the typical daily functions a pharmacy tech may carry out are:

  • Receive and assist customers with medications and other questions
  • Prepare prescription medicines under pharmacist guidance
  • Input prescription and customer data into pharmacy computer system
  • Call customers when their medications are prepared for pick-up
  • Fill out and submit customer insurance claim forms
  • Stock shelves and monitor and control inventory

Due to the nature of their job, pharmacy techs will spend the majority of their working day on their feet. And working weekends and evenings is also typical, especially for newer technicians with low seniority. But the reward for occasional tired and aching feet or sometimes having to work after hours is a very fulfilling career assisting customers with their health and wellness.

Pharmacy Technician Certificates and Degrees

Waverly VA pharmacy medication supply shelvesStudents desiring to enroll in a pharmacy technician program are qualified as long as they have a high school diploma or a GED. There are basically two options to training to be a tech regardless if you enroll in a community college or a vocational school. The first is to earn a certificate or a diploma, which usually can be finished 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. Numerous programs also include an internship at {an approved|an accepted Waverly VA pharmacy or other facility. The second option is the Associate Degree program which typically involves about two years of studies. Although not required for most entry level positions, it does furnish a more comprehensive education and can lead to more advanced positions or education in the future. Each program can provide the proper level of training to pass the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam should the graduate choose to become certified.

Pharmacist Tech Certifications Offered

It is not required to earn certification in every state, but numerous graduates of pharmacy technician schools choose to get certified so as to be more qualified when seeking employment. Additionally, many Waverly VA employers will only employ a technician that is certified. There are two organizations that provide certification:

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

The NHA requires that the candidate be 18 years or older, 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 applicant has a high school diploma and passes their exam. Recertification is called for every two years by each program, which may be satisfied by performing 20 hours of continuing education.

Pharmacist Tech Online Colleges

woman attending pharmacy tech school online in Waverly VAPrior to deciding on a pharmacist technician online college, it’s important to understand that the majority of programs do require that a substantial part of the training be conducted in a clinical environment. This is typically fulfilled in a local Waverly pharmacy or health center through an internship program. Students in most cases will have the opportunity to work under an experienced pharmacy tech in order to receive some work place experience. Fortunately the balance or non-clinical training can be accessed over the internet in your Waverly VA home or via any available computer. This option is more accommodating for many students, particularly for those who continue to work while acquiring their certificate or degree. And online schools are often more affordable than traditional options. Tuition and costs for commuting and course materials may be reduced substantially. With both the clinical and the online training, a complete education is provided. But not all online programs are accredited, which is critical for securing employment and certification (more on accreditation later). So check that each online program you are considering is accredited by a recognized accrediting organization, for instance the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). If you are disciplined enough to learn with a less formal type of education, then online classes may be the right solution for you.

What to Ask Pharmacist Technician Colleges

After you have decided whether you wish to attain a degree or a certificate, and if you prefer to enroll in an online program or attend classes on campus, you can begin to target your school alternatives. There are numerous pharmacist tech schools to pick from in the Waverly VA area and throughout the Country, so you should create a list of qualifying questions so that you can compare colleges and trade schools. As we discussed in our introduction, you will probably initially look for programs that are within both your financial budget and commuting distance from your Waverly residence. If you are able to relocate or are going to enroll in an online pharmacy tech college, then location may not be critical. But there are a number of other factors that you need to consider in order to properly compare schools. The questions below will assist you to gather that information and help you to make your ultimate decision.

Is the Pharmacy Tech College Accredited? Many pharmacist tech programs and trade schools have obtained a national or regional accreditation. One of the most respected accrediting agencies is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Colleges earning accreditation from the ASHP have been screened and verified to provide a comprehensive superior education. Online schools may additionally receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals exclusively with online or distance learning. Don’t forget to verify that the certificate or degree program together with the college you pick are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Along with helping make sure that you obtain a quality education, it may assist in acquiring financial assistance or student loans, which are often not accessible for non-accredited schools. Also, certification might mandate that the training program is accredited. And a number of Waverly VA employers will only hire entry level employees that have graduated from an accredited program.

Does the College Prep You for Certification? Certification is not mandated in all states, but a number of pharmacies desire that the technicians they employ are certified. The pharmacy tech college should prep its students to pass the NHA or the PTCB exam. Students planning on obtaining NHA certification will also need one year of work experience. This requirement may be satisfied by entering a college sponsored internship program.

Does the College Sponsor Internship Programs? As we previously covered, the NHA requires 1 year of job experience for certification, which may be fulfilled with an internship program. One of the best ways to obtain practical clinical experience as a pharmacy technician is to train 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. Find out if the colleges have a working relationship with Waverly VA area pharmacies, hospitals, or clinics for internship programs.

Does the School Give Job Placement Assistance? Finding that initial job in Waverly VA after graduation, especially with no experience, can be a daunting undertaking without some assistance. Ask if the colleges you are looking at have job assistance programs. If they do, find out what their job placement rates are. A higher job placement rate is an indicator that the school has an excellent reputation within the field generating demand for its graduates. It also signifies that it has a sizable network of pharmacy relationships where it can refer graduating students.

Where is the College Located? For many students, the school they decide on will have to be within travelling distance of their Waverly VA home. Those who have chosen to attend classes online obviously will not have to worry 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 college that is out of state or even out of your local area, you might be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges typically charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges commonly charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.

What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of student that prefers to sit far in the rear of class or hide in the crowd, you will likely want a small class size. Smaller classes permit more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the schools you are considering what the typical teacher to student ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may want to monitor one or more classes before making your final decision. This will also give you a chance to speak with a few of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacist tech program also.

Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you need to confirm that the pharmacy technician college you ultimately pick can offer the class schedule you need. This is especially essential if you choose to continue working while you attend school. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the Waverly VA 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 have to enroll in. Also, learn what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss as a result of work, illness or family emergencies.

Enrolling in a Waverly VA Pharmacy Tech School?

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

Waverly, Virginia

Popular legend has it that William Mahone (1826–1895), builder of the Norfolk and Petersburg Railroad (now Norfolk Southern), and his cultured wife, Otelia Butler Mahone (1837–1911), traveled along the newly completed Norfolk and Petersburg Railroad naming stations. Otelia was reading Ivanhoe, a book written by Sir Walter Scott. From his historical Scottish novels, Otelia chose the place names of Waverly, as well as Windsor and Wakefield. She tapped the Scottish Clan "McIvor" for the name of Ivor, a small town in neighboring Southampton County. When they could not agree, it is said that they invented a new name in honor of their dispute, which is how the tiny community of Disputanta a few miles west of Waverly was named. The N&P railroad was completed in 1858.

William Mahone became a Major General in the Confederate Army during the American Civil War, and later, a Senator in the United States Congress. A large portion of U.S. Route 460 between Petersburg and Suffolk is named in his honor.

Waverly is the second largest of the towns Gen. Mahone founded. Waverly has supplied the most state senators and delegate members to the Virginia General Assembly of any Virginia town under 3,000 people. They are Junius Edgar West, Delegate (1910–1912) and Senator (1912–1918); Thomas H. Howerton, Delegate (1912–1914); William O. Rogers, Senator (1924–1934); Garland "Peck" Gray, Senator (1942–1945 and 1948–1971); and Elmon T. Gray, Senator (1971–1992).

Find the Best Pharmacist Tech Degree Program Waverly VA

Waverly VA corner drugstoreGetting the ideal pharmacist technician training is a crucial first step to starting your career in a rewarding occupation where assisting customers with their wellness is your objective. Traditionally, most pharmacist technicians were taught “on the job”. Nowadays, the majority of pharmacies can no longer operate this way and much prefer to hire formally trained techs. Training is furnished by technical colleges, vocational and trade schools, as well as community colleges. A large number of pharmacy tech schools include both classroom and clinical work. As we have discussed in this article, it’s necessary to choose a college 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 follow our other tips you will be able to compare colleges so that you are certain to make the right choice. With the appropriate education and dedication you can accomplish your goal of becoming a pharmacist tech in Waverly VA.

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