A Day in the Life of a Pharmacy Technician

A pharmacy technician assists the pharmacists with the preparation of prescription medications for customers. The pharmacy tech is the right hand man or woman to the pharmacist, and they work alongside the pharmacists to ensure that the patients’ medication is processed, filled and distributed as efficiently and safely as possible.  The pharmacy technician professional is a very important position in the healthcare industry.

Pharmacy Technician Job Duties & Responsibilities
On an average work day the pharmacy technician will perform various job duties, which may include:

  • Greeting customers and receiving written prescription or refill requests
  • Verifying the information is complete and accurate
  • Establishing and maintaining patient profiles
  • Preparing and processing medical insurance claim forms and records
  • Typing prescribed medications and affix labels
  • Filling bottles with correct medication
  • Mixing pharmaceutical preparations according to written prescriptions
  • Double checking prescriptions are filled correctly
  • Maintaining proper storage and security conditions for drugs
  • Cleaning and maintaining equipment or work areas according to prescribed methods
  • Managing inventory (receiving and storing incoming supplies, verifying quantities against invoices, checking for outdated medications in current inventory, and notifying the pharmacist with stock needs and shortages)
  • Assisting customers by answering telephones, locating OTC items, answering questions, or referring them to the pharmacist for medication information

Pharmacy Technician Knowledge and Skills
A pharmacy technician helps ensure the pharmacy operates and runs smoothly.  Typical knowledge and skills include:

  • Exceptional customer service – Exceptional customer service involves exceeding customer expectations, where the standard and level of service received exceed that which the customer could reasonably define as normal or expected.
  • Active listening – This is the ability to sincerely listen to what another person is saying and then taking the time to understand the points being made by re-stating or paraphrasing what you have heard in your own words.
  • Critical thinking – When you use logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions, or approaches to problems you’re using critical thinking skills.
  • Mathematics skills – This includes knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, and geometry and being able to apply that knowledge in order to solve problems.
  • Service oriented – This means that you actively look for ways to help people.

Pharmacy Technician Knowledge and Abilities
As pharmacy technicians work with all types of people, it is important to have strong communication and customer service skills. It is also very important to have a positive, respectful attitude toward patients as well as your supervisors. Pharmacy technician knowledge and abilities include:

  • Medical and pharmacy terminology and processing techniques
  • Regulations governing pharmacy practice
  • Pharmaceutical drugs and formulas
  • Chemical procedures used to compound, reconstitute and dilute drugs
  • Ability to monitor consistency and effectiveness of patient/client communication
  • Ability to identify issues and recommend solutions
  • Ability to observe and assess work

Eager to start a career as a pharmacy technician and become a part of the healthcare industry in order to make a positive difference in the lives of others? Take pharmacy technician classes online at Career Step and learn the skills and job duties needed for a successful career in this growing and vibrant field.


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