Pharmacy Technician Schools | Get Your Certificate or Degree – Azusa CA

How to Select a Pharmacist Tech School near Azusa 91702

Azusa CA pharmacy tech preparing prescriptionNow that you have decided to attain your pharmacy technician degree or certificate near Azusa CA, you may be thinking about just how to pick the right program to get your education and training. Of course the initial step is to locate colleges that offer the degree or diploma that you would like to earn. A number of potential students begin by searching for colleges that are within commuting distance of their residence, and then comparing the cost. While tuition and location are critical factors when deciding on a college, they are not the only ones. Qualifications such as accreditation and reputation should be evaluated as well. And if you are interested in attending classes in your home by means of your computer as opposed to in a classroom, then finding an accredited online college will also be included in your vetting process. We will address these qualifications and some others that you will need to include when comparing pharmacy technician schools. But to begin with, let’s discuss what a pharmacy technician does, the diploma and degree options available, and the advantages of online programs.

The Function of Pharmacy Techs

Azusa CA pharmacy technician dispensing medsPharmacy techs have multiple job responsibilities, but their main duty is to dispense prescription medications. Since they are not licensed, when filling prescriptions they must operate under the management of a licensed Azusa CA pharmacist. They must also have good customer service abilities because they will be dealing directly with customers. Their attention to detail must be accurate when preparing prescription drugs per the pharmacist’s directions. And they must have a comprehensive knowledge of pharmaceutical terminology in order that they can assist customers with understanding instructions for their prescriptions as well as other pharmaceutical information and literature. On the other hand, under no situation should they ever give medical advice relating to medications or anything else. All such questions would be handled by the pharmacist. A few of the typical daily tasks a pharmacy technician might perform are:

  • Welcome and assist customers with medications and other questions
  • Prepare prescription medicines under pharmacist guidance
  • Add prescription and customer data into pharmacy computer system
  • Call customers when their prescriptions are ready for pick-up
  • Complete and submit customer insurance claim forms
  • Re-supply shelves and monitor and manage inventory

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

Pharmacy Tech Certificates and Degrees

Azusa CA pharmacy medication supply shelvesIndividuals desiring to enroll in a pharmacy tech college are qualified as long as they have a high school diploma or equivalent. There are generally two options to training to be a technician regardless if you enroll in a community college or a vocational school. The first is to earn a diploma or a certificate, which typically can be finished in a year or less. These programs present an overview to the different facets of pharmacology and pharmaceutical technology and usually include lab and classroom training. Many programs also require an internship at {an approved|an accepted Azusa CA pharmacy or other facility. The second alternative is the Associate Degree program which typically requires about 2 years of studies. Although not needed for most entry level positions, it does provide a more in depth education and can lead to more advanced positions or education down the road. Either program should furnish the proper amount of training to pass the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam should the graduate decide to become certified.

Pharmacy Tech Certification Options

Certification is not required in all states, but numerous graduates of pharmacy technician programs elect to become certified in order to be more competitive in the job market. Additionally, a number of Azusa CA pharmacies will only hire a tech that is certified. There are 2 organizations that provide certification:

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

The NHA requires that the candidate be at least 18 years old, be a high school graduate, has finished a training program, and has at least one year of work experience. The PTCB only requires that the applicant has graduated high school and passes their examination. Recertification is called for every two years by both programs, which may be satisfied by completing 20 hours of continuing education.

Pharmacy Tech Online Colleges

woman attending pharmacy tech school online in Azusa CAPrior to choosing a pharmacist technician online college, it’s important to understand that the majority of programs do require a portion of the training be completed in a clinical setting. This is commonly fulfilled in an area Azusa pharmacy or hospital through an internship program. Students often will have the benefit of working under a seasoned pharmacy technician so as to obtain some work place experience. Fortunately the balance or non-clinical training may be accessed online in your Azusa CA home or via any available computer. This alternative is more accommodating for most students, especially for those who continue to work while attaining their degree or certificate. And online colleges are often more affordable than traditional options. Tuition and expenditures for commuting and course materials can be decreased significantly. With both the online and the clinical training, a complete education is provided. But not all online programs are accredited, which is essential for obtaining employment and certification (more on accreditation later). So confirm that any online program you are looking at is accredited by an acknowledged accrediting agency, such as the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). If you are disciplined enough to learn with a less formal type of education, then online instruction might be the ideal choice for you.

What to Ask Pharmacist Technician Schools

Once you have decided whether you wish to attain a degree or a certificate, and if you want to enroll in an online college or attend classes on campus, you can begin to narrow your school options. There are a large number of pharmacy technician programs to choose from in the Azusa CA area and throughout the Country, so you need to create a list of qualifying questions so that you can contrast community colleges and trade schools. As we discussed in our introduction, you will probably first start looking for programs that are within both your financial resources and commuting distance from your Azusa residence. If you are able to move or are going to enroll in an online pharmacy tech college, then location may not be critical. But there are a number of other variables that you must consider so that you may properly compare colleges. The following questions will assist you in gathering that information and help you to make your final decision.

Is the Pharmacy Tech College Accredited? Many pharmacist technician programs and vocational schools have earned a national or regional 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 verified to furnish a complete superior education. Online programs may additionally earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals only with online or distance learning. Make sure to check that the degree or certificate program together with the college you choose are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Besides helping guarantee that you obtain a superior education, it may help in getting 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 Azusa CA employers will only hire entry level employees that have graduated from an accredited program.

Does the Program Ready You for Certification? Certification is not required in all states, but numerous pharmacies desire that the technicians they employ be certified. The pharmacist tech program should prep its students to pass the PTCB or the NHA examination. Students planning on obtaining NHA certification will additionally need one year of professional experience. This qualification can be fulfilled by entering a school sponsored internship program.

Does the School Sponsor Internship Programs? As we just discussed, the NHA requires a year of experience for certification, which can be satisfied by means of an internship program. One of the best ways to obtain hands on clinical experience as a pharmacy technician is to work out in the field. Most pharmacy tech degree or certificate programs also require clinical training prior to graduation and an internship is an excellent way to satisfy the requirement. Find out if the colleges have associations with Azusa CA area pharmacies, hospitals, or clinics for internship programs.

Does the College Offer Job Placement Help? Securing that initial job in Azusa CA upon graduation, especially with no experience, can be a daunting undertaking without any help. Find out if the schools you are looking at have job assistance programs. If they do, find out what their job placement rates are. A high job placement rate is an indication that the school has a good reputation within the profession generating demand for its graduates. It also signifies that it has a large network of pharmacy relationships where it can refer graduates.

Where is the College Located? For a lot of students, the college they decide on will need to be within travelling distance of their Azusa CA home. Students who have chosen to attend online classes naturally will not have to concern themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of importance. One thing to consider is that if you choose to enroll in a school that is out of state or even out of your local area, you might have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges normally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges often charge a higher tuition to those students that don’t reside within their districts.

How Large are the Classes ? Unless you are the sort of person that prefers to sit far in the back of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will likely want a smaller class size. Small classes permit more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the schools you are reviewing what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may want to sit in on one or more classes before making your ultimate determination. This will also give you a chance to talk with a few of the students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacist technician program as well.

Can the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must confirm that the pharmacist technician program you ultimately pick can provide the class schedule you need. This is especially important if you decide to continue working while you attend school. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in the Azusa CA area, confirm that they are offered. 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 have to enroll in. Also, learn what the protocol is for making up any classes that you might miss as a result of illness, work or family obligations.

Enrolling in a Azusa CA Pharmacy Tech School?

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

Azusa, California

The A on the San Gabriel Mountains represents the city of Azusa, and can be seen within a 30-mile radius. The population was 46,361 at the 2010 census, up from 44,712 at the 2000 census. Azusa is located along historic Route 66, which passes through the city on Foothill Boulevard and Alosta Avenue.

"Azusa stands for everything from A to Z in the U.S.A." has been a phrase used to promote the town by boosters such as the Chamber of Commerce for many years.[8][9][10] The place name "Azusa" dates to the Mexican Alta California era in the 19th century when Azusa was used to refer to the San Gabriel Valley and the San Gabriel River. It appears to have been derived from the Tongva place name Asuksagna.[11] The area was part of the Tongva peoples (GabrieleƱo Indians) homeland since at least 55 BC.[12]

The first Mexican settlement in Azusa was at the Rancho el Susa in 1841, a Mexican land grant from the Alta California Governor Juan Bautista Alvarado to Luis Arenas. In 1844 Arenas sold the rancho's land to Henry Dalton, an English immigrant and wealthy merchant from the Pueblo of Los Angeles, for $7,000. He renamed it Rancho Azusa de Dalton, and had built a winery, distillery, vinegar house, meat smokehouse, and flour mill. Also, a vineyard was planted. Dalton built a house here on a place known as Dalton Hill, near 6th Street and Cerritos Avenue in Azusa.

Find the Right Pharmacist Technician Degree Program Azusa CA

Azusa CA corner drugstoreGetting the ideal pharmacy tech training is an important first step to starting your career in a gratifying profession where assisting people with their health is your mission. Traditionally, many pharmacy technicians were trained “on the job”. These days, the majority of pharmacists can no longer afford to do this and much prefer to hire formally trained technicians. Training is furnished by trade schools, vocational and technical colleges, as well as community colleges. A large number of pharmacist tech programs include both classroom and laboratory training. As we have discussed in this article, it’s necessary to enroll in a program that is accredited and will prep you for certification. This holds true both for classes online as well as for those attended on campus. And if you make use of our other tips you will be able to compare colleges so that you are sure to make the best selection. With the right education and dedication you can achieve your goal to become a pharmacist technician in Azusa CA.

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