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

How to Select a Pharmacist Technician School near Brea 92821

Brea CA pharmacy tech preparing prescriptionHaving decided to attain your pharmacy tech certificate or degree near Brea CA, you might be thinking about just how to pick the ideal college to get your education and training. Of course the first step is to locate colleges that offer the certificate or degree that you would like to earn. Many future students begin by searching for colleges that are within commuting distance of their residence, and then comparing the tuitions. While cost and location are significant concerns when deciding on a college, they are not the sole ones. Qualifications including accreditation and reputation must be considered also. And if you prefer attending classes at home in front of your computer instead of in a classroom, then searching for an accredited online program will also be included in your vetting process. We will cover these qualifiers and 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 degree and certification options available, and the benefits of online courses.

The Responsibilities of a Pharmacy Technician

Brea CA pharmacy technician dispensing medsPharmacy techs have numerous job responsibilities, but their principal responsibility is to dispense prescription medicines. Because they are not licensed, when dispensing prescriptions they must operate under the supervision of a licensed Brea CA pharmacist. They must also have excellent customer service abilities since they will be dealing directly with customers. Their attention to detail must be absolute when preparing prescription medicines per the pharmacist’s instructions. And they need to have an in-depth knowledge of pharmaceutical terms so that they can assist customers with understanding directions for their prescriptions in addition to other pharmaceutical literature and information. On the other hand, under no situation should they ever give medical advice regarding prescriptions or anything else. Any such questions should be handled by the pharmacist. A few of the regular daily functions a pharmacy tech might perform are:

  • Greet and help customers with medications and other questions
  • Fill prescription medicines under pharmacist supervision
  • Input prescription and customer data into pharmacy computer system
  • Contact customers when their medications 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 on their feet. And working weekends and evenings is also typical, particularly for newer techs with low seniority. But the reward for occasional tired and aching feet or occasionally having to work off-hours is an extremely rewarding career helping customers with their health and wellness.

Pharmacy Technician Certificates and Degrees

Brea CA 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 generally 2 alternatives to training to be a tech whether you enroll in a community college or a trade school. The first is to earn a diploma or a certificate, which usually can be accomplished in a year or less. These programs present an overview to the different aspects of pharmacology and pharmaceutical technology and usually include lab and classroom training. Numerous programs also include an internship at {an approved|an accepted Brea CA pharmacy or other facility. The second alternative is the Associate Degree program which generally involves about 2 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 in the future. Each program can provide the necessary amount of training to pass the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam should the graduate choose to become certified.

Pharmacy Tech Certification Options

Certification is not required in every state, but numerous graduates of pharmacy technician programs opt to become certified in order to be more competitive when seeking employment. Also, a number of Brea CA pharmacies will only employ a tech that has earned certification. There are 2 organizations that provide 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 finished a training program, and has at least one year of work experience. The PTCB just requires that the applicant has a high school diploma and passes their exam. Recertification is required every two years by each program, which may be fulfilled by completing 20 hours of continuing education.

Pharmacist Technician Classes Online

woman attending pharmacy tech school online in Brea CABefore selecting a pharmacist technician online training program, it’s important to realize that most schools do require a portion of the training be completed in a clinical setting. This is usually satisfied in a local Brea pharmacy or health center through an internship program. Students often will have the opportunity to work with a seasoned pharmacy tech so as to receive some work place experience. However the non-clinical portion of the training can be taken online in your Brea CA home or via any available computer. This alternative is more convenient for many students, particularly for those who keep working while acquiring their degree or certificate. And online schools are sometimes less expensive than traditional options. Tuition and expenditures for driving and course materials can be reduced significantly. With both the online and the clinical training, a comprehensive education is provided. But not all online schools are accredited, which is essential for obtaining certification and employment (more on accreditation later). So confirm that each online program you are considering is accredited by an acknowledged accrediting agency, for example the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). If you are dedicated enough to study with a less structured form of education, then online training may be the ideal choice for you.

What to Ask Pharmacy Technician Schools

Once you have decided whether you wish to earn a degree or a certificate, and if you want to enroll in an online program or attend classes on campus, you can start to target your school options. There are a large number of pharmacist tech programs to choose from in the Brea CA area and throughout the USA, so you should create a list of qualifying questions so that you can contrast colleges and technical schools. As we discussed in our introduction, you will most likely first start looking for colleges that are within both your financial resources and commuting distance from your Brea residence. If you are willing to relocate or are have decided to enroll in an online pharmacy tech program, then location may not be critical. But there are many other issues that you should take into consideration so that you may adequately compare colleges. The questions below will assist you in gathering that information and help you to make your ultimate decision.

Is the Pharmacist Technician Program Accredited? Many pharmacy tech programs and vocational schools have acquired a national or regional accreditation. One of the most respected accrediting organizations is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Programs earning accreditation from the ASHP have been evaluated and certified to provide a comprehensive superior education. Online colleges may also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals exclusively with distance or online learning. 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 recognized accrediting agency. In addition to helping make sure that you get a superior education, it can assist in getting financial aid or student loans, which are often not available for non-accredited schools. Also, certification may mandate that the program of training is accredited. And a number of Brea CA employers will only hire entry level employees that have graduated from an accredited program.

Does the School Ready You for Certification? Certification is not mandated in every state, but many pharmacies prefer that the techs they employ are certified. The pharmacy tech college should prep its students to pass the NHA or the PTCB exam. Students planning on obtaining NHA certification will additionally need 1 year of job experience. This requirement can be met by entering a school sponsored internship program.

Does the College Provide Internship Programs? As we previously discussed, the NHA mandates a year of job experience for certification, which may be met through an internship program. One of the best ways to obtain practical clinical experience as a pharmacy technician is to train out in the field. Most pharmacy tech degree or certificate programs also require clinical training prior to graduation and an internship is a great way to satisfy the requirement. Check if the schools have a working relationship with Brea CA area pharmacies, hospitals, or clinics for internship programs.

Does the School Give Job Placement Assistance? Getting that first position in Brea CA after graduation, especially with no professional experience, can be a challenging task without some help. Find out if the schools you are reviewing have job placement programs. If so, 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 substantial network of pharmacy relationships where it can refer graduating students.

Where is the School Located? For many students, the college they pick will need to be within commuting distance of their Brea CA home. Those who have chosen to attend classes online obviously will not have to trouble themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of importance. Something to bear in mind is that if you choose to enroll in a school that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you might be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges generally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges commonly charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.

How Big are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of person that likes to sit far in the back of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will undoubtedly want a smaller class size. Small classes enable 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 final determination. This will also give you an opportunity to speak with several of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy technician program also.

Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must verify that the pharmacist tech college you finally select can offer the class schedule you need. This is especially essential if you decide to continue working while you attend classes. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Brea CA area, confirm that they are offered. If you can only attend part-time, verify if that is an alternative and how many courses or credit hours you would need to enroll in. Also, learn what the protocol is for making up any classes that you might miss because of illness, work or family emergencies.

Enrolling in a Brea CA Pharmacy Tech School?

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

Brea, California

The city began as a center of crude oil production, was later propelled by citrus production, and is now an important retail center because of the large Brea Mall and the recently redeveloped Brea Downtown. Brea is also known for its extensive public art program which began in 1975 and continues today with over 140 artworks in the collection placed and located throughout the city. Brea's public art program has been used as a model and inspiration for many public art programs across the United States.[citation needed]

The area was visited on July 29, 1769 by the Spanish Portolá expedition – the first Europeans to see inland parts of Alta California. The party camped in Brea Canyon, near a large native village and a small pool of clean water.[9] A historical marker dedicated to his visit stands in Brea Canyon just north of town.

The village of Olinda was founded in present-day Carbon Canyon at the beginning of the 19th century and many entrepreneurs came to the area searching for "black gold" (petroleum). In 1894, the owner of the land, Abel Stearns, sold 1,200 acres (4.9 km2) to the west of Olinda to the newly created Union Oil Company of California, and by 1898 many nearby hills began sporting wooden oil-drilling towers on the newly discovered Brea-Olinda Oil Field. In 1908 the village of Randolph, named for railway engineer Epes Randolph, was founded just south of Brea Canyon for the oil workers and their families. Baseball legend Walter Johnson grew up in Olinda at the start of the 20th century where he worked in the surrounding oil fields as a youth.[10]

Select the Right Pharmacist Technician Degree Program Brea CA

Brea CA corner drugstoreGetting the best pharmacist technician training is an important first step to launching your career in a fulfilling occupation where assisting people with their health is your objective. Traditionally, many pharmacy technicians were taught “on the job”. Nowadays, most pharmacists can no longer operate this way and place a higher importance on hiring formally trained technicians. Training is offered by trade schools, vocational and technical colleges, as well as community colleges. Most pharmacy technician programs incorporate both classroom and laboratory training. As we have addressed in this article, it’s essential to enroll in a college that is accredited and will prep you for certification. This is true both for online classes and for those attended on campus. And if you follow our additional suggestions you will be able to evaluate schools so that you are certain to make the best selection. With the right education and determination you can realize your goal to become a pharmacy tech in Brea CA.

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