Pharmacy Tech Training Albertville AL

How to Choose the Right Pharmacy Technician College near Albertville Alabama

Albertville AL pharmacy tech counting pillsHaving decided to attain your pharmacy technician certificate or degree near Albertville AL, you might be thinking about just how to pick the right college to receive your education and training. Usually the initial step is to locate colleges that offer the diploma or degree that you are interested in. Many prospective students begin by searching for colleges that are within commuting distance of their residence, and then comparing the tuitions. While cost and location are critical concerns when deciding on a college, they are not the sole ones. Qualifiers such as reputation and accreditation should be evaluated as well. And if you prefer attending classes at home in front of your computer instead of in a classroom, then searching for an accredited online college will also be part of your vetting process. We will address these qualifications and others that you will want to include when comparing pharmacy technician schools. But first, let’s take a look at what a pharmacy technician does, the degree and certification options available, and the advantages of online courses.

The Role of a Pharmacy Technician

Albertville AL pharmacy technician filling prescriptionPharmacy techs have various job functions, but their principal duty is to dispense prescription medicines. Because they are not licensed, when dispensing prescriptions they must perform under the management of a licensed Albertville AL pharmacist. They must also have great customer service abilities since they will be interacting directly with customers. Their attention to detail must be absolute when preparing prescription medications per the pharmacist’s directions. And they need to have an in-depth knowledge of pharmaceutical terminology in order that they may assist customers with understanding directions for their medications in addition to other pharmaceutical literature and information. On the other hand, under no circumstance should they ever give medical advice pertaining to medications or anything else. Any such questions should be directed to the pharmacist. Several of the regular daily services a pharmacy tech may carry out are:

  • Receive and help customers with prescriptions and other questions
  • Prepare prescription drugs under pharmacist guidance
  • Input customer and prescription information into pharmacy computer system
  • Contact customers when their medications are prepared for pick-up
  • Prepare and submit customer insurance claim forms
  • Stock shelves and audit and control inventory

As a consequence of their profession, pharmacy techs will spend most of their working day standing. And working evenings and weekends is also typical, particularly for newer technicians with lower seniority. But the payoff for occasional tired and aching feet or sometimes being required to work after hours is an extremely gratifying career helping people with their health and well-being.

Pharmacy Technician Degree Programs

local Albertville AL drugstoreStudents wishing to enroll in a pharmacy technician program are qualified provided that they have a high school diploma or equivalent. There are basically 2 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 typically can be finished in a year or less. These programs provide an overview to the various elements of pharmacology and pharmaceutical technology and usually include lab and classroom training. A number of programs also include an internship at {an approved|an accepted Albertville AL pharmacy or other facility. The second alternative is the Associate Degree program which typically takes about 2 years of studies. Although not needed for most entry level positions, it does offer a more expansive education and opens doors to more advanced positions or education in the future. Either program should provide the proper amount of training to pass the Pharmacy Technician Certification Examination should the graduate choose to get certified.

Pharmacist Tech Online Programs

woman attending online pharmacy technician school in Albertville ALPrior to deciding on a pharmacist tech online program, it’s necessary to understand that most schools do require a portion of the training be conducted in a clinical setting. This is typically satisfied in a local Albertville pharmacy or health center through an internship program. Students in most cases will have the opportunity to work under an experienced pharmacy tech so as to obtain some work place experience. Fortunately the non-clinical portion of the training can be accessed over the internet in your Albertville AL home or via any available computer. This option is more accommodating for many students, particularly for those who continue to work while acquiring their degree or certificate. And online colleges are frequently less expensive than traditional options. Tuition and expenditures for driving and study materials can be reduced significantly. With both the online and the clinical training, a comprehensive education is offered. But not all online schools are accredited, which is critical for securing employment and certification (more on accreditation later). So check that any online college you are looking at is accredited by a recognized accrediting agency, for instance the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). If you are disciplined enough to study with a less structured form of education, then online instruction may be the best option for you.

Pharmacy Technician Certifications Available

It is not required to earn certification in every state, but numerous graduates of pharmacy tech schools opt to get certified so as to be more competitive in the job market. Additionally, many Albertville AL pharmacies will only hire a technician that has earned certification. There are two organizations that provide certification:

  • National Healthcareer Association (NHA).
  • Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB).

The NHA requirements are that the candidate be at least 18 years old, has graduated from high school, has finished a training program, and has one or more years of work experience. The PTCB just requires that the applicant has a high school diploma and passes their examination. Recertification is required every 2 years by each program, which can be met by performing 20 hours of continuing education.

What to Ask Pharmacist Tech Programs

Questions to ask Albertville AL pharmacy tech schoolsOnce you have decided whether you would like to earn a certificate or degree, and if you prefer to enroll in an online program or go to classes on campus, you can begin to target your school options. There are many pharmacist tech programs to select from in the Albertville AL area and throughout the USA, so you must develop a list of qualifying questions so that you can contrast community colleges and trade schools. As we discussed in our introduction, you will probably first start looking for colleges that are within both your financial resources and driving distance from your Albertville home. If you are willing to relocate or are have decided to enroll in an online pharmacy tech school, then location may not be significant. But there are many other factors that you need to take into consideration so that you may effectively compare colleges. The questions below will assist you in gathering that information and help you to make your ultimate decision.

Is the Pharmacist Tech Program Accredited? The majority of pharmacist technician colleges and vocational schools have acquired a regional or national accreditation. Among the most respected accrediting organizations is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Colleges earning accreditation from the ASHP have been screened and certified to offer a comprehensive quality education. Online programs may additionally receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals only with distance or online education. Be sure to check that the degree or certificate program in addition to the college you choose are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education sanctioned accrediting organization. In addition to helping ensure that you get a superior education, it can help in acquiring financial assistance or student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited colleges. Also, certification might mandate that the program of training is accredited. And many Albertville AL pharmacies will only hire entry level employees that have graduated from an accredited program.

Does the College Prep You for Certification? Certification is not required in every state, but numerous employers prefer that the techs they hire be certified. The pharmacy tech school should ready its students to pass the PTCB or the NHA exam. Students interested in obtaining NHA certification will also need one year of job experience. This qualification may be met by taking part in a school sponsored internship program.

Does the School Provide Internship Programs? As we previously discussed, the NHA requires 1 year of experience for certification, which may be fulfilled through an internship program. One of the best ways to obtain practical clinical experience as a pharmacy technician is to train out in the field. Most pharmacy tech degree or certificate programs also require clinical training in order to graduate and an internship is an excellent way to meet the requirement. Ask if the schools have associations with Albertville AL area pharmacies, hospitals, or clinics for internship programs.

Does the College Give Job Placement Assistance? Securing that initial job in Albertville AL upon graduation, especially with no experience, can be a difficult task without some support. Find out if the colleges you are reviewing have job placement programs. If they do, find out what their job placement rates are. A high job placement rate is an indicator that the school has a good reputation within the field generating appeal for its graduates. It also indicates that it has a large network of pharmacy relationships where it can place graduating students.

Where is the Program Located? For a number of students, the college they choose will have to be within driving distance of their Albertville AL home. Those who have chosen 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 concern. One thing to bear in mind is that if you decide to enroll in a school that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you might be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges often charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges usually charge a higher tuition for 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 class or hide in the crowd, you will likely want a smaller class size. Smaller classes allow for more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the colleges you are researching what the average teacher to student ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may want to monitor one or more classes before making your ultimate determination. This will also give you an opportunity to speak with several of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacist tech program as well.

Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you need to confirm that the pharmacy tech program you ultimately pick can offer the class schedule you need. This is especially essential if you decide to continue working while you attend classes. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in the Albertville AL area, make certain that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, find out if that is an alternative and how many credit hours or courses you would have to enroll in. Also, find out what the procedure is for making up any classes that you may miss because of illness, work or family obligations.

Attending a Albertville AL Pharmacy Tech School?

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

Albertville, Alabama

The area which today includes Albertville was inhabited by the Cherokee Indians until their removal to Oklahoma in the 1830s. It was, however, near the territory of the Creek nation, and several major trails which afforded communication (or military action) between the two nations crossed the area. It is believed to have been crossed by Spanish explorer Hernando de Soto during his expeditions in 1540.[5]

The first non-indigenous settlement in what is today Albertville began in the 1850s, and the settlement was named for Thomas A. Albert, an early settler who moved from Georgia and was a town leader until his death in 1876. The city was incorporated in 1891.[1][6] A post office was established in 1910.[7]

At about 4:10 p.m. on April 24, 1908, the city was virtually wiped out by a tornado that became commonly called "The Great Cyclone," or "The Cyclone of 1908."[8] The storm is believed to have killed 35 people across northeastern Alabama, including 15 in Albertville.[9] Relief was largely delivered by railroad, particularly from the nearby city of Gadsden. Trains from Gadsden transported doctors, nurses, and the Queen City Guards, the Alabama militia company based in Gadsden. The commander of the latter, future Gadsden mayor and Col. R.A. Mitchell, reported in a dispatch to Governor B.B. Comer:

In 1893, the Alabama Legislature passed an act for the erection of an agricultural college in each of the state's Congressional districts. After some competition, Albertville was awarded the school for the Seventh District. This is the school that evolved into today's Albertville High School, whose sports teams are still known as the "Aggies."[8]

Get Information on Pharmacy Tech Training Albertville AL

Albertville AL pharmacy stocked medicationsReceiving the best pharmacist tech training is a critical first step to starting your career in a fulfilling occupation where assisting customers with their wellness is your objective. In the past, many pharmacy technicians were trained “on the job”. These days, most employers can no longer afford to do this and much prefer to hire formally trained technicians. Training is offered by trade schools, vocational and technical colleges, as well as community colleges. Most pharmacist tech schools include both classroom and laboratory training. As we have covered in this article, it’s important to select a college that is accredited and will ready you for certification. This applies both for classes online and for those attended on campus. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Pharmacy Tech Training. But if you make use of our additional suggestions you will be able to compare schools so that you are sure to make the best selection. With the right education and commitment you can achieve your goal of becoming a pharmacy technician in Albertville AL.

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