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Pharmacy Technician Schools | Get Your Certificate or Degree – Sulphur LA

How to Pick a Pharmacist Technician Program near Sulphur 70663

Sulphur LA pharmacy tech preparing prescriptionHaving decided to earn your pharmacy tech degree or certificate near Sulphur LA, you may be wondering just how to pick the best college to receive your education and training. Of course the initial step is to locate schools that offer the degree or diploma that you would like to earn. Many future students begin by searching for schools that are within driving distance of their residence, and then comparing the tuitions. While tuition and location are significant factors when selecting a school, they are not the sole ones. Qualifiers such as accreditation and reputation need to be taken into account also. And if you are interested in studying in your home in front of your computer rather than in a classroom, then searching for an accredited online college will also be part of your vetting process. We will cover these qualifiers and some others that you will want to include when comparing pharmacy technician schools. But to begin with, let’s discuss what a pharmacy technician does, the certificate and degree options available, and the advantages of online classes.

The Function of Pharmacy Techs

Sulphur LA pharmacy technician dispensing medsPharmacy techs have various job responsibilities, but their principal responsibility is to dispense prescription medications. Since they are not licensed, when dispensing prescriptions they must operate under the supervision of a licensed Sulphur LA pharmacist. They must also have good customer service skills since they will be dealing directly with customers. Their attention to detail must be absolute when filling prescription drugs per the pharmacist’s instructions. And they need to have a comprehensive knowledge of pharmaceutical terminology so that they may assist customers with understanding instructions for their prescriptions in addition to other pharmaceutical information and literature. On the other hand, under no circumstance should they ever offer medical advice concerning prescriptions or anything else. Any such questions should be directed to the pharmacist. Several of the common daily functions a pharmacy technician may carry out are:

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

Due to the nature of their profession, pharmacy techs will spend the majority of their working day standing. And working evenings and weekends is also very common, particularly for newer technicians with lower seniority. But the reward for occasional tired and aching feet or at times having to work after hours is a very satisfying career assisting people with their health and well-being.

Pharmacy Technician Degrees and Certificates

Sulphur LA pharmacy medication supply shelvesIndividuals desiring to enroll in a pharmacy tech school are qualified provided that they have a high school diploma or equivalent. There are generally two 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 typically can be finished in a year or less. These programs offer an introduction to the various facets of pharmacology and pharmaceutical technology and typically include lab and classroom training. Many programs also include an internship at {an approved|an accepted Sulphur LA pharmacy or similar facility. The second option is the Associate Degree program which normally involves about two years of studies. Although not required for most entry level positions, it does furnish a more expansive education and can lead to more advanced positions or education in the future. Either program should furnish the necessary level of training to pass the Pharmacy Technician Certification Examination should the graduate choose to become certified.

Pharmacist Tech Certification Options

It is not required to earn certification in all states, but many graduates of pharmacy tech programs choose to get certified so as to be more qualified in the job market. Also, a number of Sulphur LA pharmacies will only hire a tech that has earned certification. There are two organizations that offer certification:

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

The NHA requires that the applicant be at least 18 years old, be a high school graduate, has completed a training program, and has one or more years of work experience. The PTCB just requires that the applicant has a high school diploma and passes their exam. Recertification is mandated every 2 years by each program, which can be fulfilled by completing 20 hours of continuing education.

Pharmacy Tech Online Colleges

woman attending pharmacy tech school online in Sulphur LAPrior to selecting a pharmacist technician online school, it’s necessary to realize that the majority of programs do require a portion of the training be completed in a clinical setting. This is usually fulfilled in an area Sulphur pharmacy or health center through an internship program. Students often will have the benefit of working under a seasoned pharmacy tech in order to obtain some work place experience. Fortunately the balance or non-clinical training can be accessed online in your Sulphur LA home or via any available computer. This option is more accommodating for most students, particularly for those who keep working while earning their degree or certificate. And online schools are frequently more affordable than classroom options. Tuition and expenses for driving and study materials may be decreased significantly. With both the online and the clinical training, a complete education is offered. But not all online colleges are accredited, which is important for obtaining certification and employment (more on accreditation later). So confirm that each online program you are looking at is accredited by a recognized accrediting agency, such as the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). If you are disciplined enough to study with a less formal type of education, then online training may be the right solution for you.

Points to Ask Pharmacy Technician Colleges

Once you have decided whether you wish to obtain a certificate or degree, and if you want to enroll in an online school or go to classes on campus, you can start to target your school alternatives. There are a large number of pharmacy technician schools to select from in the Sulphur LA area and throughout the United States, so you need to develop a list of qualifying questions so that you can contrast community colleges and vocational schools. As we discussed in our introduction, you will probably initially look for colleges that are within both your financial budget and commuting distance from your Sulphur residence. If you are willing to move or are have decided to enroll in an online pharmacy tech program, then location may not be significant. But there are a number of other variables that you should take into consideration in order to adequately compare colleges. The following questions will assist you in gathering that information and help you to make your ultimate selection.

Is the Pharmacist Tech Program Accredited? Most pharmacist technician programs and trade schools have acquired a regional or national accreditation. One of the most highly regarded accrediting agencies is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Schools earning accreditation from the ASHP have been evaluated and certified to provide a comprehensive quality education. Online programs may additionally obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals only with online or distance education. Be sure to check that the certificate or degree program as well as the school you choose are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. In addition to helping ensure that you get a superior education, it might assist in acquiring financial assistance or student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited colleges. Also, certification may require that the training program is accredited. And many Sulphur LA pharmacies 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 every state, but a number of employers desire that the techs they employ be certified. The pharmacist technician school should prepare its students to pass the PTCB or the NHA examination. Students interested in obtaining NHA certification will additionally need 1 year of professional experience. This condition may be met by participating in a college sponsored internship program.

Does the School Offer Internship Programs? As we previously discussed, the NHA mandates a year of experience for certification, which can be satisfied 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 tech degree or certificate programs also require practical training in order to graduate and an internship is a great way to fulfill the requirement. Ask if the schools have a working relationship with Sulphur LA area pharmacies, hospitals, or clinics for internship programs.

Does the School Give Job Placement Assistance? Securing that first position in Sulphur LA after graduation, particularly with no professional experience, can be a difficult endeavor without any support. Ask if the colleges you are looking at have job placement programs. If they do, find out what their job placement rates are. A high job placement rate is an indication that the college has a good reputation within the profession generating demand for its graduates. It also means that it has a substantial network of employer relationships where it can place graduating students.

Where is the College Located? For a lot of students, the college they choose will need to be within travelling distance of their Sulphur LA residence. Those who have opted to attend classes online obviously will not have to concern themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of concern. One thing to consider is that if you choose to enroll in a school that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you might have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges commonly charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges frequently charge a higher tuition for those students that live outside of their districts.

How Large are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of student that prefers to sit way in the rear of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will undoubtedly want a smaller class size. Small classes enable more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the schools you are reviewing what the average teacher to student ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may want to sit in on one or more classes before making your final determination. This will also give you a chance to converse with several of the students and instructors to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacist technician program as well.

Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you need to confirm that the pharmacy technician school you ultimately select can offer the class schedule you need. This is especially essential if you choose to continue working while attending school. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in the Sulphur LA area, confirm that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, check if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would have to carry. Also, ask what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss as a result of work, illness or family obligations.

Enrolling in a Sulphur LA Pharmacy Tech School?

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

Sulphur, Louisiana

Sulphur is named for the sulfur mines that were operated in the area in the 1900s. In 1867, Professor Eugene W. Hilgard, an experienced geologist who was prospecting for oil and other minerals, conducted exploratory borings in Calcasieu Parish, Louisiana and discovered sulfur in the caprock of a salt dome. However, the sulfur was beneath several hundred feet of muck and quicksand containing deadly hydrogen sulfide gas, which made mining extremely hazardous. Repeated unsuccessful attempts to sink conventional mining shafts in the 1870s and 1880s resulted in the loss of many lives.

In 1890, the German immigrant Herman Frasch invented and patented the Frasch Process of mining sulfur, using concentric pipes to pump superheated water into the ground, liquefy the mineral, and force the liquid to the surface with compressed air. The first molten sulfur was brought to the surface on Christmas Eve of 1894. Sulfur soon began to be mined on an industrial scale, with the molten mineral allowed to solidify and dry in enormous vats 100 by 400 feet, then blasted and hauled by rail to the Sabine River for shipment.[5] Frasch's invention greatly facilitated sulfur mining, and the Union Sulphur Company, a joint venture of Dr. Frasch and the American Sulphur Company that owned the land, sparked a period of booming growth in the decades that followed.[6] The elementary school on South Huntington Street in downtown Sulphur is named after Frasch.

With the addition of the Cities Service (Citgo) oil refinery in 1943, the areas of Maplewood and Hollywood were developed to house refinery workers. The Sulphur area is still mostly dependent on the oil refineries and petrochemical plants for employment.

Choose the Ideal Pharmacy Tech School Sulphur LA

Sulphur LA corner drugstoreReceiving the best pharmacy tech training is a critical first step to starting your career in a gratifying occupation where assisting customers with their wellness is your mission. In the past, many pharmacy techs were taught “on the job”. These days, the majority of pharmacies can no longer operate this way and place a higher importance on hiring formally educated techs. Training is offered by trade schools, vocational and technical colleges, as well as community colleges. A large number of pharmacist tech colleges include both classroom and clinical work. As we have discussed in this article, it’s necessary to select a school that is accredited and will ready you for certification. This holds true both for online classes and for those attended on campus. And if you make use of our other suggestions you will be able to compare colleges so that you are sure to make the ideal choice. With the proper training and dedication you can achieve your goal to become a pharmacist technician in Sulphur LA.

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    Walgreens
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