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

How to Enroll In a Pharmacy Technician Program near Monroeville 36460

Monroeville AL pharmacy tech preparing prescriptionNow that you have decided to earn your pharmacy tech degree or certificate near Monroeville AL, you may be thinking about how to pick the ideal college to get your education and training. Of course the initial step is to locate schools that offer the certificate or degree that you would like to earn. Many prospective students start by looking for colleges that are within commuting distance of their home, and then comparing the tuitions. While tuition and location are important concerns when picking a college, they are not the sole ones. Qualifications including reputation and accreditation need to be evaluated also. And if you prefer attending classes at home by means of your computer as opposed to in a classroom, then finding an accredited online school will also be part of your vetting process. We will go over these qualifications and others that you will want to include when reviewing pharmacy technician schools. But first, let’s discuss what a pharmacy technician does, the diploma and degree options available, and the benefits of online courses.

The Role of a Pharmacy Tech

Monroeville AL pharmacy technician dispensing medsPharmacy techs have numerous job duties, but their principal duty is to dispense prescription medicines. Since they are not licensed, when dispensing prescriptions they must perform under the management of a licensed Monroeville AL pharmacist. They must also have excellent customer service skills since they will be interacting directly with customers. Their attention to detail must be accurate when filling prescription drugs per the pharmacist’s directions. And they need to have an extensive knowledge of pharmaceutical terminology in order that they may assist customers with understanding instructions for their prescriptions as well as other pharmaceutical literature and information. However, under no situation should they ever give medical advice regarding prescriptions or anything else. Any such questions should be directed to the pharmacist. A few of the regular daily duties a pharmacy tech may carry out are:

  • Welcome and help customers with prescriptions and other questions
  • Prepare prescription medicines under pharmacist guidance
  • Add prescription and customer information into pharmacy computer system
  • Call customers when their medications are ready for pick-up
  • Prepare and submit customer insurance claim forms
  • Stock shelves and audit and control inventory

As a consequence of their profession, pharmacy technicians will spend most of their working day standing. And working weekends and evenings is also very common, particularly for newer technicians with low seniority. But the reward for occasional tired and aching feet or sometimes being required to work off-hours is an extremely gratifying career helping customers with their health and wellness.

Pharmacy Technician Degrees and Diplomas

Monroeville AL pharmacy medication supply shelvesIndividuals wishing to enroll in a pharmacy tech school are qualified provided that they have a high school diploma or a GED. There are essentially 2 alternatives to becoming a technician regardless if you enroll in a community college or a trade school. The first is to attain a certificate or a diploma, which normally can be accomplished in a year or less. These programs present an introduction to the different aspects of pharmacology and pharmaceutical technology and usually include lab and classroom training. A number of programs also require an internship at {an approved|an accepted Monroeville AL pharmacy or similar facility. The second alternative is the Associate Degree program which generally requires about 2 years of studies. Although not needed for most entry level positions, it does furnish a more in depth education and can lead to more advanced positions or education down the road. Either program should provide the proper level of training to pass the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam should the graduate choose to get certified.

Pharmacist Tech Certification Choices

It is not required to earn certification in every state, but many graduates of pharmacy technician schools opt to get certified so as to be more qualified in the job market. Additionally, many Monroeville AL employers will only hire a technician that has earned certification. There are two organizations that provide certification:

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

The NHA requires that the applicant be at least 18 years old, has graduated from high school, has completed a training program, and has one or more years of work experience. The PTCB just requires that the candidate has graduated high school and passes their examination. Recertification is required every 2 years by each program, which may be fulfilled by performing 20 hours of continuing education.

Pharmacy Tech Online Colleges

woman attending pharmacy tech school online in Monroeville ALBefore choosing a pharmacy tech online program, it’s necessary to realize that most schools do require a portion of the training be conducted in a clinical setting. This is commonly fulfilled in a local Monroeville pharmacy or hospital through an internship program. Students often will have the opportunity to work under a seasoned pharmacy technician so as to acquire some work place experience. Fortunately the non-clinical portion of the training may be accessed online in your Monroeville AL home or via any available computer. This option is more practical for most students, especially for those who continue to work while acquiring their certificate or degree. And online schools are sometimes less expensive than traditional options. Tuition and expenditures for driving and course materials may be decreased substantially. With both the online and the clinical training, a comprehensive education is provided. But not all online programs are accredited, which is important for securing employment and certification (more on accreditation later). So verify that each online college you are considering is accredited by an acknowledged accrediting organization, for example the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). If you are disciplined enough to study with a less supervised form of education, then online instruction may be the right option for you.

Questions to Ask Pharmacy Technician Colleges

Once you have determined whether you want to earn 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 alternatives. There are numerous pharmacist tech schools to select from in the Monroeville AL area and throughout the Country, so you must develop a list of qualifying questions so that you can compare community colleges and trade schools. As we discussed in our introduction, you will undoubtedly first start looking for programs that are within both your financial resources and commuting distance from your Monroeville home. If you are able to relocate or are going to enroll in an online pharmacy tech college, then location may not be important. But there are several other factors that you must consider so that you may effectively compare programs. The following questions will assist you to gather that information and help you to make your ultimate choice.

Is the Pharmacist Technician School Accredited? Most pharmacy technician programs and trade schools have earned a regional or national accreditation. Among the most respected accrediting agencies is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Programs earning accreditation from the ASHP have been screened and certified to offer a complete quality education. Online programs may additionally receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals exclusively with online or distance learning. Be sure to confirm that the degree or certificate program in addition to the school you choose are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. In addition to helping make sure that you get a superior education, it can help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited colleges. Also, certification might require that the program of training is accredited. And a number of Monroeville AL employers will only hire entry level employees that have earned a degree from an accredited school.

Does the School Prep You for Certification? Certification is not required in all states, but a number of employers desire that the technicians they hire are certified. The pharmacist technician school needs to prepare its students to pass the PTCB or the NHA examination. Students interested in obtaining NHA certification will also need 1 year of job experience. This qualification may be satisfied by taking part in a college sponsored internship program.

Does the College Sponsor Internship Programs? As we just discussed, the NHA requires a year of experience for certification, which can be met with an internship program. Perhaps the best way to get hands on clinical experience as a pharmacy tech is to train out in the field. Most pharmacy tech certificate or degree programs also require clinical training prior to graduation and an internship is an excellent way to meet the requirement. Find out if the schools have associations with Monroeville AL area pharmacies, clinics, or hospitals for internship programs.

Does the School Provide Job Placement Assistance? Securing that first position in Monroeville AL after graduation, particularly with no professional experience, can be a daunting undertaking without any help. Find out if the schools you are reviewing have job assistance programs. If they do, ask what their job placement rates are. A higher job placement rate is an indication that the college has an excellent reputation within the profession generating demand for its graduates. It also signifies that it has a sizable network of employer contacts where it can refer graduating students.

Where is the College Located? For a number of students, the college they choose will have to be within commuting distance of their Monroeville AL home. Students who have decided to attend classes online naturally 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 keep in mind is that if you decide 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 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 kind of student that likes to sit way in the rear of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will undoubtedly prefer a smaller class size. Small classes allow for more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the colleges you are reviewing what the average teacher to student ratio is for their classes. If practical you may want to monitor one or more classes before making your final determination. This will also give you a chance to talk with several of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy technician program as well.

Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you need to verify that the pharmacist tech school you ultimately choose can provide the class schedule you need. This is particularly important if you opt to continue working while you attend classes. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the Monroeville AL area, make certain that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, find out if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would have to enroll in. Also, ask what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss due to illness, work or family emergencies.

Enrolling in a Monroeville AL Pharmacy Tech School?

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

Monroeville, Alabama

It is known as the hometown of two prominent writers of the post-World War II period, Truman Capote and Harper Lee, who were childhood friends in the 1930s. Lee's 1960 novel, To Kill a Mockingbird, earned her the Pulitzer Prize. The lasting fame of To Kill a Mockingbird became a tourist draw for the town. In 1997, the Alabama Legislature designated Monroeville and Monroe County as the "Literary Capital of Alabama."

The town was initially known as Walker's Mill and Store, named for Major Walker, the area's first white settler. In 1832, the county seat was relocated to Monroeville from Claiborne on the Alabama River. The settlement was briefly renamed "Centerville" due to its location in the center of the county, but then it was formally changed to Monroeville. The town was not formally incorporated until April 15, 1899.[5]

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 13.4 square miles (34.7 km2), of which 13.4 square miles (34.6 km2) is land and 0.0077 square miles (0.02 km2), or 0.05%, is water.[4]

Select the Right Pharmacist Technician College Monroeville AL

Monroeville AL corner drugstoreReceiving the ideal pharmacist technician training is an important first step to beginning your career in a gratifying occupation where assisting customers with their health is your objective. Traditionally, most pharmacy techs were taught “on the job”. Nowadays, the majority of employers can no longer afford to do this and much prefer to hire formally educated technicians. Training is furnished by trade schools, vocational and technical colleges, as well as community colleges. A large number of pharmacy tech programs include both clinical and classroom work. As we have discussed in this article, it’s important to choose a program that is accredited and will prep you for certification. This holds true both for online classes as well as for those attended on campus. And if you follow our other tips you will be able to evaluate schools so that you are sure to make the ideal choice. With the proper education and dedication you can accomplish your goal of becoming a pharmacy tech in Monroeville AL.

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