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Pharmacy Technician Schools | Get Your Certificate or Degree – Vicksburg MS

How to Select a Pharmacy Technician School near Vicksburg 39180

Vicksburg MS pharmacy tech preparing prescriptionNow that you have decided to earn your pharmacy technician degree or certificate near Vicksburg MS, you might be thinking about how to choose the right program to get your education and training. Usually the first step is to locate colleges that offer the diploma or degree that you would like to earn. A number of potential students begin by looking for colleges that are within driving distance of their residence, and then comparing the cost. While cost and location are critical factors when picking a college, they are not the only ones. Qualifications including reputation and accreditation must be considered as well. And if you are interested in attending classes in your home by means of your computer as opposed to in a classroom, then finding an accredited online college will also be included in your vetting process. We will cover these qualifiers 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 advantages of online classes.

The Role of a Pharmacy Tech

Vicksburg MS pharmacy technician dispensing medsPharmacy techs have various job functions, but their main duty is to dispense prescription medications. Because they are not licensed, when dispensing prescriptions they must work under the management of a licensed Vicksburg MS pharmacist. They must also have good customer service skills since they will be dealing directly with customers. Their attention to detail must be precise when preparing prescription medications 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 medications as well as other pharmaceutical information and literature. However, under no circumstance should they ever give medical advice concerning medications or anything else. All such questions would be handled by the pharmacist. Several of the common daily functions a pharmacy technician may perform are:

  • Greet and help customers with medications and other questions
  • Prepare prescription medications under pharmacist direction
  • Enter prescription and customer data 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 manage inventory

As a consequence of their profession, pharmacy techs will spend most of their working day standing. And working weekends and evenings is also typical, especially for newer techs with lower seniority. But the payoff for occasional tired and aching feet or occasionally being required to work off-hours is a very satisfying career helping people with their health and wellness.

Pharmacy Technician Degrees and Certificates

Vicksburg MS pharmacy medication supply shelvesIndividuals wishing to enroll in a pharmacy technician school are qualified provided that they have a high school diploma or equivalent. There are generally two options to training to be a technician regardless if you enroll in a community college or a vocational school. The first is to attain a certificate or a diploma, which usually can be accomplished in a year or less. These programs offer an introduction to the different elements of pharmacology and pharmaceutical technology and typically include lab and classroom training. Numerous programs also require an internship at {an approved|an accepted Vicksburg MS pharmacy or other facility. The second alternative is the Associate Degree program which typically requires about two years of studies. Although not required for most entry level positions, it does provide a more in depth education and opens doors to more advanced positions or education in the future. Each program should provide the necessary level of training to pass the Pharmacy Technician Certification Examination should the graduate decide to become certified.

Pharmacist Tech Certifications Offered

It is not required to earn certification in all states, but numerous graduates of pharmacy tech schools choose to get certified so as to be more competitive in the job market. Also, many Vicksburg MS employers will only hire a tech 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 applicant be at least 18 years old, has graduated from high school, has completed a training program, and has at least one year of work experience. The PTCB just requires that the applicant has graduated high school 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 Schools Online

woman attending pharmacy tech school online in Vicksburg MSPrior to selecting a pharmacist tech online college, it’s necessary to understand that most schools do require a portion of the training be carried out in a clinical setting. This is usually fulfilled in an area Vicksburg pharmacy or hospital by means of an internship program. Students often will have the benefit of working with a seasoned pharmacy tech in order to obtain some work place experience. However the non-clinical portion of the training can be accessed online in your Vicksburg MS home or via any available computer. This option is more accommodating for most students, especially for those who keep working while acquiring their degree or certificate. And online programs are frequently more affordable than classroom options. Tuition and expenditures for commuting and study materials can be reduced significantly. With both the clinical and the online training, a complete education is provided. But not all online programs are accredited, which is critical for securing employment and certification (more on accreditation later). So check that any online program you are looking at is accredited by a recognized accrediting agency, for example the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). If you are dedicated enough to study with a less supervised form of education, then online training may be the best option for you.

What to Ask Pharmacist Technician Colleges

Once you have determined whether you would like to attain a certificate or degree, and if you prefer to enroll in an online program or attend classes on campus, you can begin to target your school options. There are a large number of pharmacist technician programs to choose from in the Vicksburg MS area and throughout the USA, so you must create a list of qualifying questions so that you can compare community colleges and trade schools. As we addressed in our introduction, you will most likely first start looking for programs that are within both your financial budget and commuting distance from your Vicksburg residence. If you are able to move or are going to enroll in an online pharmacy tech college, then location may not be important. But there are a number of other issues that you should take into consideration in order to properly compare schools. The following questions will assist you in collecting that information and help you to make your final choice.

Is the Pharmacy Tech Program Accredited? Most pharmacist technician colleges and vocational schools have acquired a national or regional accreditation. Among the most highly regarded accrediting organizations is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Programs earning accreditation from the ASHP have been evaluated and certified to offer a comprehensive superior education. Online colleges may also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals only with online or distance education. Don’t forget to check that the degree or certificate program in addition to the school you pick are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education sanctioned accrediting agency. Besides helping ensure that you receive a quality education, it might help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not accessible for non-accredited colleges. Also, certification may mandate that the program of training is accredited. And a number of Vicksburg MS employers will only hire entry level employees that have graduated from an accredited program.

Does the College Prepare You for Certification? Certification is not mandated in every state, but many pharmacies desire that the techs they hire are certified. The pharmacist technician college needs to ready its students to pass the NHA or the PTCB exam. Students planning on obtaining NHA certification will also need 1 year of professional experience. This requirement may be met by taking part in a college sponsored internship program.

Does the College Sponsor Internship Programs? As we just covered, the NHA requires a year of job experience for certification, which may be satisfied with an internship program. Perhaps the best way to acquire practical clinical experience as a pharmacy technician is to work out in the field. Most pharmacy technician certificate or degree programs also require clinical training prior to graduation and an internship is a great way to fulfill the requirement. Find out if the schools have associations with Vicksburg MS area pharmacies, hospitals, or clinics for internship programs.

Does the School Offer Job Placement Help? Finding that initial position in Vicksburg MS after graduation, especially with no experience, can be a challenging undertaking without some help. Find out if the colleges you are researching have job placement programs. If so, find out what their job placement rates are. A higher job placement rate is an indication that the college has an excellent reputation within the profession creating demand for its graduates. It also indicates that it has a large network of pharmacy contacts where it can place graduating students.

Where is the School Located? For many students, the school they select will need to be within driving distance of their Vicksburg MS residence. Those who have decided 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 importance. 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 might need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges commonly charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges frequently charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.

What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the type of person that prefers to sit way in the rear of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will likely want a smaller class size. Smaller classes enable more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the schools you are researching what the typical teacher to student ratio is for their classes. If practical you may prefer to monitor one or more classes before making your final determination. This will also give you a chance to speak with a few of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy technician program as well.

Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you need to confirm that the pharmacy technician school you finally pick can provide the class schedule you need. This is particularly essential if you decide to continue working while you attend school. If you need to schedule night or weekend classes in the Vicksburg MS area, make sure that they are available. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, check if that is an option and how many courses or credit hours you would need to carry. Also, find out what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss because of illness, work or family obligations.

Enrolling in a Vicksburg MS Pharmacy Tech School?

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

Vicksburg, Mississippi

Vicksburg is the only city in, and county seat of Warren County, Mississippi, United States. It is located 234 miles (377 km) northwest of New Orleans at the confluence of the Mississippi and Yazoo rivers, and 40 miles (64 km) due west of Jackson, the state capital. It is located on the east bank of the Mississippi River across from the state of Louisiana.

The city has increased in population since 1900, when 14,834 people lived here. The population was 26,407 at the 2000 census. In 2010, it was designated as the principal city of a Micropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) with a total population of 49,644. This MSA includes all of Warren County.

The area which is now Vicksburg was long occupied by the Natchez Native Americans as part of their historical territory along the Mississippi. The Natchez spoke a language isolate not related to the Muskogean languages of the other major tribes in the area. Before the Natchez, other indigenous cultures had occupied this strategic area for thousands of years.

Find the Right Pharmacy Technician Training Program Vicksburg MS

Vicksburg MS corner drugstoreGetting the ideal pharmacy tech training is a crucial first step to beginning your career in a gratifying occupation where assisting customers with their health is your mission. Traditionally, many pharmacist technicians were trained “on the job”. These days, the majority of pharmacies can no longer afford to do this and much prefer to hire formally educated techs. Training is furnished by technical colleges, vocational and trade schools, as well as community colleges. Many pharmacist tech schools include both clinical and classroom work. 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 as well as for those attended on campus. And if you make use of our other tips you will be able to evaluate schools so that you are sure to make the best choice. With the appropriate education and determination you can achieve your goal to become a pharmacist tech in Vicksburg MS.

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