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

How to Choose a Pharmacist Technician Program near Coalinga 93210

Coalinga CA pharmacy tech preparing prescriptionHaving made the decision to attain your pharmacy tech certificate or degree near Coalinga CA, you may be thinking about just how to choose the best college to receive your education and training. Naturally the initial step is to locate colleges that offer the degree or diploma that you would like to earn. A number of potential students start by searching for colleges that are within driving distance of their residence, and then comparing the cost. While cost and location are important concerns when picking a school, they are not the only ones. Qualifiers including accreditation and reputation need to be evaluated as well. And if you prefer attending classes at home by means of your computer instead of in a classroom, then searching for an accredited online college will also be part of your vetting process. We will go over these qualifications and some others that you will need to include when comparing pharmacy technician schools. But first, let’s take a look at what a pharmacy tech does, the degree and certification options available, and the advantages of online courses.

The Function of Pharmacy Techs

Coalinga CA pharmacy technician dispensing medsPharmacy technicians have various job responsibilities, but their principal duty is to dispense prescription medicines. Because they are not licensed, when dispensing prescriptions they must operate under the management of a licensed Coalinga CA pharmacist. They must also have great customer service abilities since they will be dealing directly with customers. Their attention to detail must be precise when filling prescription medicines per the pharmacist’s directions. And they must have an in-depth knowledge of pharmaceutical terminology so that they may help customers with understanding instructions for their prescriptions in addition to other pharmaceutical literature and information. On the other hand, under no situation should they ever provide medical advice relating to prescriptions or anything else. Any such questions should be directed to the pharmacist. Some of the typical daily functions a pharmacy tech might perform are:

  • Greet and assist customers with prescriptions and other questions
  • Prepare prescription drugs under pharmacist direction
  • Add prescription and customer data into pharmacy computer system
  • Contact 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 techs will spend most of their working day on their feet. And working weekends and evenings is also very common, especially for newer technicians with low seniority. But the payoff for occasional tired and aching feet or sometimes having to work after hours is a very satisfying career helping people with their health and wellness.

Pharmacy Technician Certificates and Degrees

Coalinga CA pharmacy medication supply shelvesIndividuals desiring to enroll in a pharmacy technician program are qualified provided that they have a high school diploma or a GED. There are essentially 2 options to becoming a tech regardless if you enroll in a community college or a vocational school. The first is to earn a certificate or a diploma, which normally can be accomplished in a year or less. These programs offer an overview to the various aspects of pharmacology and pharmaceutical technology and generally include lab and classroom training. A number of programs also include an internship at {an approved|an accepted Coalinga CA pharmacy or other facility. The second alternative is the Associate Degree program which normally takes about 2 years of studies. Although not required for most entry level positions, it does provide a more in depth education and can lead to more advanced positions or education down the road. Each program should furnish the necessary level of training to pass the Pharmacy Technician Certification Examination should the graduate choose to get certified.

Pharmacy Tech Certifications Available

Certification is not required in every state, but a large number of graduates of pharmacy technician programs elect to get certified in order to be more competitive in the job market. Additionally, a number of Coalinga CA employers will only employ a technician that has earned certification. There are 2 organizations that offer certification:

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

The NHA requirements are that the candidate be at least 18 years old, has graduated from high school, has completed a training program, and has at least one year of professional experience. The PTCB just requires that the applicant has graduated high school and passes their examination. Recertification is called for every two years by both programs, which can be satisfied by completing 20 hours of continuing education.

Pharmacist Tech Programs Online

woman attending pharmacy tech school online in Coalinga CABefore selecting a pharmacist technician online college, it’s necessary to realize that most schools do require a portion of the training be completed in a clinical setting. This is typically fulfilled in an area Coalinga pharmacy or hospital by means of an internship program. Students in most cases will have the opportunity to work with a seasoned pharmacy technician so as to acquire some real world experience. However the balance or non-clinical training can be accessed over the internet in your Coalinga CA home or via any available computer. This option is more accommodating for many students, particularly for those who continue to work while earning their certificate or degree. And online programs are frequently less expensive than traditional options. Tuition and expenditures for driving and course materials may be decreased significantly. With both the clinical and the online training, a complete education is provided. But not all online schools are accredited, which is critical for securing certification and employment (more on accreditation later). So confirm that each online school you are considering is accredited by a recognized accrediting agency, such as the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). If you are disciplined enough to learn with a less structured form of education, then online training may be the right choice for you.

What to Ask Pharmacy Tech Schools

After you have determined whether you wish to obtain a degree or a certificate, and if you prefer to enroll in an online school or attend classes on campus, you can begin to narrow your school alternatives. There are a large number of pharmacy tech programs to pick from in the Coalinga CA area and throughout the United States, so you must create a list of qualifying questions so that you can contrast colleges and technical 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 Coalinga home. If you are willing to relocate or are have decided to enroll in an online pharmacy tech school, then location may not be important. But there are a number of other variables that you should consider so that you may effectively compare colleges. The questions below will assist you in gathering that information and help you to make your final decision.

Is the Pharmacist Technician College Accredited? Many pharmacist technician programs and vocational schools have obtained a regional or national accreditation. One of the most respected accrediting agencies is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Programs earning accreditation from the ASHP have been screened and verified to provide a complete quality education. Online colleges may also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals solely with distance or online learning. Don’t forget to confirm that the degree or certificate program in addition to the school you pick are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Besides helping make sure that you receive a superior education, it can assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not offered for non-accredited schools. Also, certification may mandate that the training program is accredited. And many Coalinga CA employers will only hire entry level employees that have earned a degree from an accredited school.

Does the College Ready You for Certification? Certification is not required in all states, but many employers prefer that the techs they hire are certified. The pharmacy tech school should ready its students to pass the PTCB or the NHA exam. Students interested in obtaining NHA certification will additionally need 1 year of professional experience. This qualification may be met by participating in a school sponsored internship program.

Does the School Offer Internship Programs? As we just covered, the NHA requires a year of experience for certification, which may be fulfilled by means of an internship program. Perhaps the best way to get hands on clinical experience as a pharmacy technician is to work out in the field. Most pharmacy tech degree or certificate programs also require practical training in order to graduate and an internship is an excellent way to fulfill the requirement. Check if the colleges have associations with Coalinga CA area pharmacies, clinics, or hospitals for internship programs.

Does the School Offer Job Placement Help? Getting that first job in Coalinga CA after graduation, particularly with no prior experience, can be a difficult endeavor without any support. Find out if the schools you are reviewing have job assistance programs. If they do, find out what their job placement rates are. A high job placement rate is an indicator that the college has an excellent reputation within the profession creating appeal for its graduates. It also means that it has a large network of pharmacy relationships where it can place graduating students.

Where is the Program Located? For many students, the college they choose will need to be within travelling distance of their Coalinga CA home. Students who have chosen to attend online classes obviously will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of concern. Something to bear in mind is that if you decide to enroll in a college 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 commonly charge a higher tuition to those students that don’t reside within their districts.

How Big are the Classes ? Unless you are the kind of student that likes to sit far in the rear of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will probably prefer a smaller class size. Small classes allow for more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the schools you are considering what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may want to monitor one or more classes before making your ultimate 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 verify that the pharmacy technician college you finally choose can offer the class schedule you need. This is particularly important if you choose to continue working while attending classes. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Coalinga CA area, confirm that they are offered. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, verify if that is an alternative and how many credit hours or courses you would need to enroll in. Also, find out what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss because of work, illness or family emergencies.

Enrolling in a Coalinga CA Pharmacy Tech School?

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

Coalinga, California

Legendary bandit Joaquin Murrieta was killed in 1853 at his headquarters, Arroyo de Cantua, north of Coalinga. California Historical Landmark #344 marks the approximate site of where he was slain, near the junction of present-day State Route 33 and Route 198.

Before 20th century diesel locomotives, steam locomotives were used, and powered in the San Joaquin Valley by burning coal mined from the northern foothills of Mount Diablo to the north. The Southern Pacific Railroad Company established the site as a coaling station in 1888, and it was called simply Coaling Station A. Local tradition has it that an official of Southern Pacific made the name more sonorous by adding an a to it.[10] However, it is just as likely that the small railside signs of the day, which often abbreviated names, read "COALINGA" to mean "Coaling A." [Another example is Braner's Cut north of Eureka, whose sign said "BRACUT," which has now become the name of that spot along Highway 101.] The resemblance to Nahuatl (where cōātl = "snake") is accidental.

On May 2, 1983, Coalinga was struck by an earthquake with a moment magnitude of 6.5, which nearly destroyed more than 300 homes and apartment buildings; another 691 buildings suffered major damage, and hundreds more had minor damage. Damage was severe in downtown Coalinga–the eight block commercial district was almost totally destroyed. The shock was felt as far away as Los Angeles and western Nevada, and was followed by a series of aftershocks that caused additional minor damage and some injuries. Only one death was reported of a man who succumbed to a heart attack. [11]

Enroll in the Ideal Pharmacy Tech School Coalinga CA

Coalinga CA corner drugstoreFinding the best pharmacist technician training is a critical first step to starting your career in a rewarding occupation where assisting people with their health is your mission. In the past, many pharmacy technicians were trained “on the job”. These days, most pharmacists can no longer operate this way and place a higher importance on hiring formally trained techs. Training is offered by technical colleges, vocational and trade schools, as well as community colleges. A large number of pharmacist technician programs include both classroom and laboratory work. As we have covered in this article, it’s essential to select a school that is accredited and will prepare you for certification. This is true 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 evaluate colleges so that you are sure to make the right selection. With the proper education and determination you can reach your goal of becoming a pharmacy tech in Coalinga CA.

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