Envision Your Career

What is a pharmacy technician?

Pharmacy technicians play an integral role in supporting pharmacists and providing safe and effective care to patients in community, hospital/health system, ambulatory care, military, compounding, online, veterinary, and other practice settings

Specific responsibilities will vary by the type of practice setting and the technician’s level of experience. In general, a pharmacy technician may:

  • enter prescription orders 
  • package and label prescriptions 
  • operate automated dispensing systems 
  • maintain inventories 
  • arrange for patients to speak with pharmacists 
  • take and review medication histories (Medication History)
  • process insurance claims 
  • check/verify other technicians’ work (TPV: Technician Product Verification)
  • compound sterile preparations 
  • reconcile medications (medication reconciliation) 
  • manage medication therapy (MTM) 
  • assist with immunizations 

What is the predicted career outlook for pharmacy technicians?

The Bureau of Labor and Statistics (BLS) anticipates “faster than average” employment growth for pharmacy technicians, growing more than 7% from 2018 to 2028. Formal education, work experience, and national certification can all help pharmacy technicians grow professionally and increase long-term earning potential. PTCB has a range of credentials to help pharmacy technicians support their career path.

 

 

2015 Median* Pay: $14.62/hr
2018 Median Pay: $15.72/hr
 
2015 Median Pay: $30,410 annual
2018 Median Pay: $32,700 annual
 

Source: 2018 Occupational Outlook Handbook.
*The median wage is the wage at which half the workers in an occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less.

How will earning PTCB Credentials support your career?

When pharmacists are asked who they trust, the answer is PTCB. Community pharmacy employers often require PTCB CPhT Certification and more than 77% of health-system/hospital pharmacy technicians are certified by PTCB*. State Boards of Pharmacy typically require state licensure and/or national certification to ensure that practicing technicians meet certain qualifications. While working requirements vary from state-to-state, earning a PTCB credential can be instrumental in building an exciting and rewarding career in healthcare.   

 

“I was placed in an advantageous position compared to my fellow technicians when I acquired PTCB Certification. When employers are hiring or advancing employees, they choose those who are PTCB-Certified.”

—Nadia Camacho, CPhT

 

Pharmacists and related employment decision makers know that a Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT) demonstrates the required knowledge to offer safe and effective patient care. In one study** of pharmacists, respondents viewed pharmacy technician certification as an essential component in reducing medication errors, ensuring patient safety, and increasing positive health outcomes.

CPhTs also have an impact on customer confidence and their overall pharmacy experience. In a 2016 study***, 76% of consumers surveyed said they would switch pharmacies if they knew that their current technicians were not certified.

As the nation’s first and most trusted pharmacy credentialing organization, PTCB offers the only pharmacy technician certification accepted in every US state and territory. And with more than 1,400 test centers located throughout the country, it’s easy to find a test center near you. Just apply and schedule your exam online.

* ASHP National Survey of Pharmacy Practice in Hospital Settings - Prescribing and Transcribing 2016 
**2010:  Pharmacists' Perception of the Value of Technician Certification
***2016: PTCB Public Perception Survey

How do PTCB CPhTs find employment? 

The PTCB Career Center is an online resource to help PTCB CPhTs find jobs across pharmacy practice settings. Through this site, CPhTs from across the US apply for jobs and employers post job openings and browse resumes.

How can you get involved in your profession? 

State pharmacy associations and national pharmacy associations, including the American Pharmacists Association and the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, offer pharmacy technician memberships, continuing education, and opportunities to be a voice for CPhTs.