What does a Pharmacy Technician do?
Pharmacy technicians assist the pharmacist in the preparation and distribution of medications, maintaining the drug inventory, and maintaining patient and pharmacy records in a manner consistent with all federal, state, and local laws and regulations, as well as pharmacy policies and procedures. Pharmacy technician activities are performed under the supervision of a licensed pharmacist.
Pharmacy technicians generally have their high school diploma and are licensed as a pharmacy technician in their state of practice. Many pharmacy technicians also choose to become a Certified Pharmacy Technician by meeting eligibility requirements and passing an exam. The best pharmacy technicians are customer-service oriented and have a keen eye for detail.
- Read and interpret physician's medication orders
- Prepare and package chemotherapy medications and other medications requiring special handling in accordance with safety measures
- Aid in filling, processing, and dispensing medications
- Re-package and label medications
- Adhere to safety practices in order to ensure quality care for patients
- Help maintain the drug inventory through inventory control practices
- Provide customer service by answering phone calls in a prompt and courteous manner
- Triage requests and prioritize them
- Check for expiration dates on medications on a regular basis
- High school diploma or general education degree (GED) required
- Current pharmacy technician registration/certification
- Pharmacy technician licencsure in the state you are working in
- Basic mathematics skills including adding, subtracting, multiplying, and dividing in all units of measure
- Effective computer and keyboarding skills
- Working knowledge of pharmacy information systems
- Strong communication skills, both written and oral
- Strong prioritization skills and an ability to make decisions independently and effectively
- Able to operate equipment such as computers, scan guns, tablet counters, and cash registers
- Familiarity with pharmacy practice settings, legal requirements and limitations, prescription information and calculations, drug identification and generic equivalents, drug manufacturing, packaging and labeling information, and proper drug handling and storage practices
Pharmacy Technician Salaries
Average Base Pay
Pharmacy Technician Career Path
Learn how to become a Pharmacy Technician, what skills and education you need to succeed, and what level of pay to expect at each step on your career path.
Years of Experience Distribution
Pharmacy Technician Insights
“they say flexible hours but its not really because that just means you have to work weekends and nights”
“(I'd recommend being cautious with what personal information you share with coworkers AND management.”
“Depending on which store you are based at and front end vs pharmacy wages and coworkers are good.”
“The pay isn't that great and is on the lower end of the spectrum.”
“My favorite part of working for Meijer is the flexible hours as I am a college student”
“Really enjoy working here on a per diem basis (pay is above the average in the industry).”
“The management is one of the best I’ve worked with and so are the people I work with for the most part”
“It was a date job when I was there so the benefits were really good.”
Pharmacy Technician Interviews
Frequently asked questions about the role and responsibilities of pharmacy technicians
Pharmacy technicians spend their days supporting the pharmacist, usually working to fill prescription and refill requests. Their most common daily tasks include verifying the accuracy of all patient and medication information, providing customer assistance, handling phone calls, and filling and labeling prescription bottles.
The pharmaceutical industry is stable with a positive long-term forecast and often offers employment benefits such as health insurance and paid time off. Pharmacy technician jobs may also offer flexible hours and other perks. This career can be emotionally rewarding as well with a positive work environment and the opportunity to help many people.
The average salary of a pharmacy technician in the U.S. is $2,467 per year. Since the position usually requires six months to two years of training, this job may be a good position for college students or an individual changing careers.
Working as a pharmacy technician can be challenging at times. It requires a vast knowledge of products, including how to label, store, and dispense medication correctly, along with thorough inventory management. At times, it might be challenging to maintain a professional demeanor with difficult customers.