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

How to Find the Right Pharmacy Tech School near Ashford 36312

Ashford AL pharmacy tech preparing prescriptionNow that you have made the decision to earn your pharmacy technician degree or certificate near Ashford AL, you may be wondering just how to select the best program to receive your education and training. Of course the first step is to locate schools that offer the diploma or degree that you are interested in. Many prospective students begin by looking for colleges that are within driving distance of their home, and then comparing the tuitions. While tuition and location are important factors when selecting a school, they are not the sole ones. Qualifications such as accreditation and reputation need to be taken into account as well. And if you prefer attending classes at home in front of your computer instead of 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 reviewing pharmacy technician schools. But first, let’s discuss what a pharmacy tech does, the certificate and degree options available, and the benefits of online programs.

The Duties of Pharmacy Techs

Ashford AL pharmacy technician dispensing medsPharmacy techs have numerous job duties, but their main duty is to dispense prescription medications. Since they are not licensed, when filling prescriptions they must work under the supervision of a licensed Ashford AL pharmacist. They must also have excellent customer service abilities because they will be interacting directly with customers. Their attention to detail must be accurate when preparing prescription medications per the pharmacist’s directions. And they must have a comprehensive knowledge of pharmaceutical terminology in order that they can help customers with understanding instructions for their medications as well as other pharmaceutical literature and information. However, under no situation should they ever give medical advice relating to medications or anything else. Any such questions should be directed to the pharmacist. Several of the typical daily duties a pharmacy tech may perform are:

  • Greet and help customers with medications and other questions
  • Fill prescription medicines under pharmacist direction
  • Input customer and prescription data into pharmacy computer system
  • Phone customers when their prescriptions are ready for pick-up
  • Fill out and submit customer insurance claim forms
  • Stock shelves and audit and manage inventory

Due to the nature of their job, pharmacy technicians will spend the majority of their working day standing. And working evenings and weekends is also typical, especially for newer techs with low seniority. But the payoff for occasional tired and aching feet or occasionally having to work after hours is an extremely gratifying career assisting customers with their health and well-being.

Pharmacy Tech Degrees and Diplomas

Ashford AL pharmacy medication supply shelvesIndividuals wishing to enroll in a pharmacy tech college are qualified provided that they have a high school diploma or equivalent. There are basically 2 options to training to be a technician whether you enroll in a community college or a vocational school. The first is to attain a certificate or a diploma, which typically can be completed in a year or less. These programs provide an introduction to the various aspects of pharmacology and pharmaceutical technology and normally include classroom and lab training. A number of programs also include an internship at {an approved|an accepted Ashford AL pharmacy or similar facility. The second alternative is the Associate Degree program which generally takes about two years of studies. Although not needed for most entry level positions, it does furnish a more comprehensive education and opens doors to more advanced positions or education in the future. Either program should furnish the necessary amount of training to pass the Pharmacy Technician Certification Examination should the graduate decide to get certified.

Pharmacist Tech Certifications Available

Certification is not required in all states, but numerous graduates of pharmacy tech schools opt to get certified so as to be more competitive when seeking employment. Additionally, a number of Ashford AL employers will only employ a tech that is certified. There are two organizations that offer certification:

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

The NHA requires that the applicant be 18 years or older, be a high school graduate, has completed 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 exam. Recertification is called for every two years by both programs, which may be met by performing 20 hours of continuing education.

Pharmacist Technician Colleges Online

woman attending pharmacy tech school online in Ashford ALBefore selecting a pharmacy tech online training program, it’s necessary to realize that most schools do require that a substantial part of the training be conducted in a clinical environment. This is commonly satisfied in a local Ashford pharmacy or hospital through an internship program. Students often will have the opportunity to work with an experienced pharmacy tech so as to obtain some work place experience. However the non-clinical portion of the training can be taken online in your Ashford AL home or via any available computer. This alternative is more convenient for most students, particularly for those who keep working while acquiring their degree or certificate. And online colleges are often less expensive than classroom options. Tuition and expenses for driving and study materials can be decreased substantially. With both the online and the clinical training, a comprehensive education is offered. But not all online colleges are accredited, which is essential for securing employment and certification (more on accreditation later). So verify that each online college you are reviewing 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 instruction may be the right choice for you.

Points to Ask Pharmacy Technician Programs

Once you have decided whether you want to obtain a certificate or degree, and if you prefer to enroll in an online college or go to classes on campus, you can begin to target your school options. There are many pharmacist tech colleges to select from in the Ashford AL 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 covered in our introduction, you will most likely first start looking for colleges that are within both your financial resources and commuting distance from your Ashford home. 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 several other factors that you should consider in order to properly compare colleges. The following questions will help you in gathering that information and help you to make your ultimate choice.

Is the Pharmacy Technician Program Accredited? Most pharmacy technician colleges and vocational 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 certified to offer a complete superior education. Online schools may additionally receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals only with distance or online education. Don’t forget to check that the degree or certificate program as well as the college you pick are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Besides helping guarantee that you receive a superior education, it might assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools. Also, certification might mandate that the program of training is accredited. And many Ashford AL employers 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 mandated in every state, but many pharmacies desire that the technicians they hire are certified. The pharmacy tech program needs to prepare its students to pass the NHA or the PTCB exam. Students planning on obtaining NHA certification will additionally need one year of work experience. This requirement may be fulfilled by entering a school sponsored internship program.

Does the School Offer Internship Programs? As we previously covered, the NHA mandates a year of professional experience for certification, which can be met through an internship program. Perhaps the best way to get practical clinical experience as a pharmacy technician is to work out in the field. Most pharmacy tech certificate or degree programs also require clinical training prior to graduation and an internship is a great way to satisfy the requirement. Find out if the programs have associations with Ashford AL area pharmacies, hospitals, or clinics for internship programs.

Does the School Give Job Placement Help? Securing that initial job in Ashford AL upon graduation, especially with no professional experience, can be a daunting endeavor without any support. Ask if the schools you are reviewing have job placement programs. If they do, ask what their job placement rates are. A higher job placement rate is an indicator that the school has an excellent reputation within the field creating appeal for its graduates. It also signifies that it has a sizable network of pharmacy relationships where it can place graduating students.

Where is the Program Located? For many students, the college they select will need to be within commuting distance of their Ashford AL residence. Students who have opted to attend online classes obviously will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of concern. Something to consider is that if you choose to enroll in a program that is out of state or even out of your local area, you may be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges commonly charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges usually charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.

How Large are the Classes ? Unless you are the sort of student that likes to sit far in the rear of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will likely want a small class size. Smaller classes enable more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the schools you are considering 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 decision. This will also give you a chance to converse with some of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the pharmacist technician program as well.

Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And last you must confirm that the pharmacy tech college you finally choose can furnish the class schedule you need. This is especially important if you opt to continue working while you attend classes. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Ashford AL area, check that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, check if that is an option and how many courses or credit hours you would need to enroll in. Also, ask what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss as a result of illness, work or family obligations.

Enrolling in a Ashford AL Pharmacy Tech School?

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

Ashford, Alabama

Ashford is a town[4] in Houston County, Alabama, United States. It is part of the Dothan, Alabama Metropolitan Statistical Area. The town was incorporated in June 1891.[5] For most of its history, it was a center for naval stores production, pulpwood harvesting, and cotton agriculture. The population was 2,148 at the 2010 census,[6] up from 1,853 at the 2000 census.

Ashford is located slightly northeast of the center of Houston County at 31°11′3″N 85°14′7″W / 31.18417°N 85.23528°W / 31.18417; -85.23528 (31.184032, -85.235286).[7]U.S. Route 84 passes through the southern part of the town, leading west 9 miles (14 km) to Dothan and southeast 24 miles (39 km) to Donalsonville, Georgia. The Chattahoochee River, which forms the Georgia state line, is 12 miles (19 km) southeast of Ashford on US 84.

Ashford's former mayor is Jonathon Grecu, he resigned from office on December 31, 2017. On January 8, 2018 Carole Barfield took office. As of October 2018, the current mayor is Carole Barfield, and City Council members are Gary Gibson, Ronnie Whitehead, Alan Anderson, James Smith, and Denise Herndon. The recreation director for the City of Ashford is Louis Edmondson. The City Clerk is Cassandra Lindenmuth.

Choose the Best Pharmacy Technician Program Ashford AL

Ashford AL corner drugstoreReceiving the ideal pharmacist tech training is an important first step to starting your career in a fulfilling profession where assisting customers with their health is your purpose. In the past, many pharmacist techs were trained “on the job”. Nowadays, the majority of pharmacies can no longer afford to do this and much prefer to hire formally trained technicians. Training is offered by technical colleges, vocational and trade schools, as well as community colleges. Many pharmacy tech programs incorporate both classroom and clinical training. As we have covered in this article, it’s essential to select a school that is accredited and will prep you for certification. This applies both for classes online and for those attended on campus. And if you make use of our other suggestions you will be able to evaluate programs so that you are sure to make the ideal choice. With the appropriate education and determination you can reach your goal to become a pharmacist technician in Ashford AL.

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    Walgreens
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