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Pharmacy Technician Schools | Get Your Certificate or Degree – Silver Springs FL

How to Choose a Pharmacist Tech College near Silver Springs 34488

Silver Springs FL pharmacy tech preparing prescriptionHaving decided to attain your pharmacy technician degree or certificate near Silver Springs FL, you may be thinking about just how to choose the right school to get your education and training. Of course the first step is to find schools that offer the diploma or degree that you would like to earn. A number of prospective students begin by searching for colleges that are within driving distance of their home, and then comparing the cost. While tuition and location are critical concerns when choosing a college, they are not the only ones. Qualifications such as accreditation and reputation need to be evaluated as well. And if you prefer studying at home in front of your computer rather than 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 want to include when reviewing 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 programs.

The Role of Pharmacy Techs

Silver Springs FL pharmacy technician dispensing medsPharmacy techs have many job functions, but their main responsibility is to dispense prescription medications. Since they are not licensed, when dispensing prescriptions they must operate under the management of a licensed Silver Springs FL pharmacist. They must also have excellent customer service skills since they will be dealing directly with customers. Their attention to detail must be precise when preparing prescription medicines per the pharmacist’s instructions. And they need to have an in-depth knowledge of pharmaceutical terminology so that they can help customers with understanding directions for their medications as well as other pharmaceutical information and literature. However, under no situation should they ever provide medical advice relating to medications or anything else. Any such questions should be handled by the pharmacist. A few of the regular daily services a pharmacy technician might carry out are:

  • Greet and help customers with medications and other questions
  • Dispense prescription medications under pharmacist supervision
  • Input customer and prescription information into pharmacy computer system
  • Call customers when their medications are ready for pick-up
  • Prepare and submit customer insurance claim forms
  • Re-supply shelves and audit and manage inventory

As a consequence of their profession, pharmacy technicians will spend the majority of their working day on their feet. And working evenings and weekends is also typical, particularly for newer techs with low seniority. But the payoff for occasional tired and aching feet or sometimes having to work off-hours is a very gratifying career helping customers with their health and well-being.

Pharmacy Tech Training Programs

Silver Springs FL pharmacy medication supply shelvesStudents wishing to enroll in a pharmacy tech college are qualified as long as they have a high school diploma or a GED. There are essentially two alternatives to training to be a tech whether you enroll in a community college or a vocational school. The first is to attain a certificate or a diploma, which usually can be finished in a year or less. These programs provide an introduction to the various facets of pharmacology and pharmaceutical technology and generally include classroom and lab training. Many programs also require an internship at {an approved|an accepted Silver Springs FL 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 extensive education and opens doors to more advanced positions or education down the road. Each program can provide the necessary amount of training to pass the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam should the graduate decide to become certified.

Pharmacist Technician Certification Options

It is not required to earn certification in every state, but many graduates of pharmacy tech schools opt to get certified in order to be more qualified when seeking employment. Also, many Silver Springs FL employers will only hire a tech that has earned certification. There are 2 organizations that provide certification:

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

The NHA requirements are that the applicant be 18 years or older, be a high school graduate, has finished a training program, and has at least one year of work experience. The PTCB just requires that the applicant has graduated high school and passes their examination. Recertification is mandated every 2 years by each program, which may be fulfilled by performing 20 hours of continuing education.

Pharmacy Tech Schools Online

woman attending pharmacy tech school online in Silver Springs FLPrior to choosing a pharmacist technician online college, it’s necessary to understand that most schools do require a portion of the training be carried out in a clinical environment. This is typically fulfilled in a local Silver Springs pharmacy or hospital by means of an internship program. Students in most cases will have the opportunity to work with an experienced pharmacy technician so as to obtain some real world experience. Fortunately the balance or non-clinical training may be accessed over the internet in your Silver Springs FL home or via any available computer. This alternative is more accommodating for most students, particularly for those who keep working while earning their certificate or degree. And online programs are sometimes more affordable than classroom options. Tuition and expenditures for driving and study materials may be decreased substantially. With both the online and the clinical training, a complete education is offered. But not all online colleges are accredited, which is important for securing employment and certification (more on accreditation later). So check that each online program you are considering is accredited by an acknowledged accrediting agency, for instance the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). If you are dedicated enough to study with a less structured form of education, then online classes might be the right choice for you.

What to Ask Pharmacy Tech Programs

After you have decided whether you want to attain a degree or a certificate, and if you want to enroll in an online college or attend classes on campus, you can start to narrow your school options. There are a large number of pharmacist tech colleges to choose from in the Silver Springs FL area and throughout the Country, so you must create a list of qualifying questions so that you can compare community colleges and trade schools. As we discussed in our introduction, you will undoubtedly initially look for colleges that are within both your financial resources and driving distance from your Silver Springs home. If you are willing to move or are going to enroll in an online pharmacy tech college, then location may not be important. But there are a number of other variables that you should take into consideration in order to effectively compare schools. The questions below will assist you to gather that information and help you to make your ultimate selection.

Is the Pharmacy Technician School Accredited? Many pharmacy tech programs and trade schools have obtained a national or regional accreditation. Among the most respected accrediting agencies is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Schools earning accreditation from the ASHP have been screened and verified to furnish a comprehensive superior education. Online programs may additionally obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals exclusively with distance or online learning. Be sure to check that the degree or certificate program together with the college you choose are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Along with helping guarantee that you obtain a quality education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not available for non-accredited colleges. Also, certification might require that the training program is accredited. And many Silver Springs FL employers will only hire entry level employees that have earned a degree from an accredited school.

Does the College Prepare You for Certification? Certification is not mandated in all states, but many pharmacies prefer that the techs they hire be certified. The pharmacy tech college should ready its students to pass the NHA or the PTCB exam. Students interested in obtaining NHA certification will additionally need one year of job experience. This condition may be fulfilled by entering a school sponsored internship program.

Does the School Sponsor Internship Programs? As we just covered, the NHA requires one year of professional experience for certification, which can be met with an internship program. One of the best ways 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 practical training prior to graduation and an internship is an excellent way to fulfill the requirement. Ask if the colleges have a working relationship with Silver Springs FL area pharmacies, clinics, or hospitals for internship programs.

Does the College Give Job Placement Help? Securing that first job in Silver Springs FL upon graduation, particularly with no professional experience, can be a difficult task without some support. Ask if the colleges you are considering have job assistance programs. If they do, ask what their job placement rates are. A higher job placement rate is an indicator that the college has an excellent reputation within the field creating demand for its graduates. It also means that it has a sizable network of employer contacts where it can place graduates.

Where is the College Located? For many students, the college they choose will need to be within commuting distance of their Silver Springs FL home. Those who have decided 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 importance. Something 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 may have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges generally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges frequently charge a higher tuition for those students that don’t reside within their districts.

What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the sort of student that likes to sit way in the back of class or hide in the crowd, you will likely prefer a smaller class size. Small classes allow for more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the colleges you are researching what the typical teacher to student ratio is for their classes. If practical you may want to sit in on one or more classes before making your final decision. This will also give you an opportunity to talk with a few of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy tech program also.

Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you need to confirm that the pharmacy tech program you finally pick can offer the class schedule you need. This is particularly important if you choose to continue working while you attend school. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in the Silver Springs FL area, make certain 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 need to carry. Also, ask what the protocol is for making up any classes that you might miss because of illness, work or family emergencies.

Enrolling in a Silver Springs FL Pharmacy Tech School?

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

Silver Springs, Florida

Silver Springs is an unincorporated community in Marion County, Florida, United States. It is the site of Silver Springs, a group of artesian springs and a historic tourist attraction that is now part of Silver Springs State Park. The community is part of the Ocala metropolitan area.

One of Florida's first tourist attractions, the springs drew visitors even before the U.S. Civil War. Glass-bottom boats have been a popular way to see the 242-acre (98 ha) complex. A small amusement park with various animals, a concert stage, a carousel, and exhibits also developed.

Since the mid-19th century, the natural environment of Silver Springs has attracted visitors from throughout the United States. Glass-bottom boat tours of the springs began in the late 1870s. In the 1920s, W. Carl Ray and W.M. "Shorty" Davidson, after leasing the land from Ed Carmichael (upon whose death the springs were left to the University of Florida), developed the land around the headwaters of the Silver River into an attraction that eventually became known as Silver Springs Nature Theme Park. The attraction featured native animal exhibits, amusement rides, and 30 or 90-minute glass-bottom boat tours of the springs. The 1934 'Princess Donna' is the oldest and only remaining operational boat from this by gone era. The "Princess Donna' currently operates on the Homosassa River in Old Homosassa Florida. In 2013, the State of Florida took over operations of Silver Springs and combined it with the adjacent Silver River State Park to form the new Silver Springs State Park. The T. W. Randall House on the National Register of Historic Places is located to the northeast.

Choose the Best Pharmacy Tech School Silver Springs FL

Silver Springs FL corner drugstoreGetting the best pharmacy tech training is an important first step to starting your career in a fulfilling profession where assisting people with their health is your objective. Traditionally, most pharmacist technicians were trained “on the job”. Nowadays, the majority of pharmacies can no longer afford to do this and much prefer to hire formally trained techs. Training is provided by trade schools, vocational and technical colleges, as well as community colleges. Most pharmacy tech programs include both laboratory and classromm work. As we have discussed in this article, it’s essential to enroll in a school that is accredited and will ready you for certification. This applies both for online classes as well as for those attended on campus. And if you make use of our other suggestions you will be able to compare schools so that you are certain to make the best choice. With the right training and dedication you can achieve your goal of becoming a pharmacy technician in Silver Springs FL.

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