Schools Training

A Prescription for Success: Becoming a Pharmacy Technician

13 JUL 2012
Career Path : Childcare

Chemistry has come a long way. It began in the old kingdoms of Egypt and developed through ancient times as metallurgy and atomism. By the medieval era, belief in a Philosopher’s Stone, which could transform any metal into gold, led to the rise of alchemy. Although ultimately a failure, alchemy formed the basis for modern chemistry.


Today, the medical and healthcare industries owe much to the field of chemistry for the development and improvement of medicine and prescription drugs. Because not every doctor is a chemist, we have the much needed roles of pharmacists and pharmacy technicians to simplify the administration of prescription drugs to patients.


The pharmacy technician, also known as a pharmaceutical technician, is a professional in the healthcare industry who works with licensed pharmacists. They have a variety of functions and can work in a wide range of medical facilities and areas of industry. As a career, the pharmacy technician combines the skills and will to help patients, assist pharmacists and doctors, and work with the healing power of chemistry. It is a challenging career that requires thorough training, but one that pays off not only in terms of competitive salaries, but also because pharmacy technicians know they are working in the business of helping and healing.


To get started in this career, take the time to research some pharmacy technician programs. Many programs vary so you should have an idea of what a great program should emphasize in their training. Some of the key subjects that are covered are:


– assisting pharmacists in delivery of pharmaceutical services

– knowing legislation and methodology of dispensing prescriptions

– preparation and distribution of pharmaceuticals

– drug inventory controls

– learning classes of available drugs and medical devices

– simulated lab courses of community and hospital pharmacy practice

– compounding techniques in the preparation of sterile and non-sterile pharmaceuticals, and others


After a thorough training from an institution which has some sort of accredited status from a national institution (for example, the CCAPP), you should expect to enter an internship or job-placement at some sort of pharmacy.


Aside from your local community pharmacy, a career as a pharmacy technician can take you many other exciting places to work, like hospitals, but also pharmaceutical manufacturers, and insurance companies. Pharmaceutical technicians are even often needed in the service of the government and the military as well.


Because of these diverse areas of employment, it is advantageous to get a degree at an institution with strong ties to other programs in the healthcare industry, such as nursing degree programs. Just as chemistry is the science that binds the elements, the healthcare industry binds together so many professionals with a common goal, fighting sickness and disease and improving the health of the population. Becoming a pharmacy technician is an excellent way to join in this unified goal.


Visit Mohawk College for more information on nursing courses and other degree options.