Category Archives: South Carolina

Pharmacy Technician Courses College Richland SC

How to Select the Right Pharmacy Tech College near Richland South Carolina

Richland SC pharmacy tech counting pillsHaving decided to attain your pharmacy technician certificate or degree near Richland SC, you may be thinking about just how to pick the right college to get your education and training. Naturally the first step is to find colleges that offer the certificate or degree that you are interested in. A number of future students start by looking for colleges that are within commuting distance of their home, and then comparing the cost. While cost and location are important concerns when picking a school, they are not the only ones. Qualifications including reputation and accreditation must be taken into account also. And if you are interested in attending classes at home in front of your computer as opposed to in a classroom, then searching for an accredited online college will also be included in your vetting process. We will address these qualifiers and some others that you will need to include when comparing pharmacy technician schools. But first, let’s discuss what a pharmacy technician does, the degree and certification options available, and the advantages of online courses.

The Job of Pharmacy Techs

Richland SC pharmacy technician filling prescriptionPharmacy techs have many job responsibilities, but their primary duty is to dispense prescription medicines. Because they are not licensed, when filling prescriptions they must perform under the supervision of a licensed Richland SC pharmacist. They must also have excellent customer service abilities since they will be dealing directly with customers. Their attention to detail must be accurate when preparing prescription drugs per the pharmacist’s instructions. And they must have an extensive knowledge of pharmaceutical terms in order that they may assist customers with understanding directions for their prescriptions as well as other pharmaceutical information and literature. However, under no situation should they ever offer medical advice concerning medications or anything else. All such questions should be handled by the pharmacist. Some of the regular daily functions a pharmacy tech might perform are:

  • Receive and assist customers with medications and other questions
  • Dispense prescription medicines under pharmacist supervision
  • Input prescription and customer data 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 very common, especially for newer techs with low seniority. But the reward for occasional tired and aching feet or occasionally having to work off-hours is an extremely rewarding career assisting customers with their health and well-being.

Pharmacy Tech Degrees and Diplomas

local Richland SC drugstoreIndividuals desiring to enroll in a pharmacy technician school are qualified provided that they have a high school diploma or a GED. There are essentially 2 options to training to be a technician whether you enroll in a community college or a trade school. The first is to attain a certificate or a diploma, which normally can be completed in a year or less. These programs offer an introduction to the different aspects of pharmacology and pharmaceutical technology and normally include classroom and lab training. Numerous programs also require an internship at {an approved|an accepted Richland SC pharmacy or other facility. The second option is the Associate Degree program which normally takes about two years of studies. Although not required for most entry level positions, it does offer a more extensive education and opens doors to more advanced positions or education in the future. Each program should provide the proper level of training to pass the Pharmacy Technician Certification Examination should the graduate choose to get certified.

Pharmacist Tech Online Classes

woman attending online pharmacy technician school in Richland SCBefore selecting a pharmacist technician online college, it’s important to realize that most programs do require that a substantial part of the training be conducted in a clinical setting. This is typically fulfilled in a local Richland pharmacy or health center through an internship program. Students often will have the opportunity to work with a seasoned pharmacy technician so as to receive some work place experience. However the balance or non-clinical training can be taken online in your Richland SC home or via any available computer. This alternative is more practical for most students, notably for those who continue to work while attaining their certificate or degree. And online programs are often less expensive than traditional options. Tuition and costs for commuting 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 obtaining employment and certification (more on accreditation later). So verify that any online college you are reviewing is accredited by an acknowledged accrediting agency, such as the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). If you are dedicated enough to learn with a less formal type of education, then online classes might be the best choice for you.

Pharmacy Technician Certifications Available

Certification is not required in every state, but numerous graduates of pharmacy tech colleges choose to get certified so as to be more competitive when seeking employment. Also, a number of Richland SC employers will only hire a tech that has earned certification. There are 2 organizations that offer certification:

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

The NHA requires that the applicant 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 only requires that the candidate has a high school diploma and passes their examination. Recertification is called for every two years by each program, which can be satisfied by completing 20 hours of continuing education.

What to Ask Pharmacist Tech Schools

Questions to ask Richland SC pharmacy tech schoolsAfter you have decided whether you would like to earn a degree or a certificate, and if you prefer to enroll in an online college or go to classes on campus, you can begin to narrow your school options. There are a large number of pharmacist tech programs to pick from in the Richland SC area and throughout the Country, so you should create a list of qualifying questions so that you can contrast community colleges and trade schools. As we addressed in our introduction, you will probably initially look for colleges that are within both your financial budget and commuting distance from your Richland home. If you are willing to move or are have decided to enroll in an online pharmacy tech school, then location may not be critical. But there are many other variables that you need to consider so that you may adequately compare programs. The following questions will assist you in gathering that information and help you to make your final choice.

Is the Pharmacist Tech College Accredited? Most pharmacy technician programs and trade schools have acquired a national or regional accreditation. Among the most respected accrediting agencies is the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP). Colleges earning accreditation from the ASHP have been evaluated and verified to offer a complete quality education. Online schools may also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which deals exclusively with online or distance education. Make sure to confirm that the certificate or degree program as well as the school you choose are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education sanctioned accrediting agency. Along with helping guarantee that you receive a quality education, it might assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not accessible for non-accredited colleges. Also, certification might mandate that the program of training is accredited. And a number of Richland SC pharmacies will only hire entry level employees that have earned a degree from an accredited school.

Does the Program Prepare You for Certification? Certification is not required in all states, but a number of employers prefer that the technicians they employ are certified. The pharmacist technician college should ready its students to pass the PTCB or the NHA examination. Students interested in obtaining NHA certification will additionally need 1 year of work experience. This condition may be satisfied by participating in a school sponsored internship program.

Does the College Provide Internship Programs? As we previously covered, the NHA mandates 1 year of job experience for certification, which may be fulfilled through an internship program. One of the best ways to obtain hands on clinical experience as a pharmacy tech is to train out in the field. Most pharmacy technician certificate or degree programs also require clinical training prior to graduation and an internship is an excellent way to meet the requirement. Check if the programs have associations with Richland SC area pharmacies, clinics, or hospitals for internship programs.

Does the College Give Job Placement Help? Securing that first position in Richland SC upon graduation, especially with no prior experience, can be a difficult undertaking without any assistance. Ask if the colleges you are reviewing have job assistance programs. If so, ask what their job placement rates are. A higher job placement rate is an indication that the school has a good reputation within the profession creating appeal for its graduates. It also means that it has a large network of pharmacy relationships where it can refer graduating students.

Where is the School Located? For many students, the college they pick will need to be within travelling distance of their Richland SC residence. Students who have opted to attend online classes obviously will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of importance. One thing to bear in mind is that if you choose to enroll in a college that is out of state or even out of your local area, you may need to pay a higher tuition. State colleges often charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges often charge a higher tuition for those students that don’t reside within their districts.

What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the kind of person that prefers to sit way in the rear of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will undoubtedly want a small class size. Smaller classes permit more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the schools you are considering what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may prefer to sit in on one or more classes before making your final determination. This will also give you a chance to speak with some of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy technician program as well.

Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you need to verify that the pharmacy tech school you finally select can provide the class schedule you need. This is particularly essential if you decide to continue working while you attend classes. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in the Richland SC area, check that they are offered. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, find out if that is an alternative and how many credit hours or courses you would need to enroll in. Also, learn what the protocol is for making up any classes that you might miss due to illness, work or family obligations.

Attending a Richland SC Pharmacy Tech School?

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

Richland County, South Carolina

Richland County is located in the U.S. state of South Carolina. As of the 2016 census estimate, the population was 409,549,[1] making it the second-most populous county in South Carolina, behind only Greenville County. The county seat and largest city is Columbia,[2] the state capital. The county was founded in 1785.

Richland County was probably named for its "rich land." The county was formed in 1785 as part of the large Camden District. A small part of Richland later went to adjacent Kershaw County in 1791. The county seat and largest city is Columbia, which is also the state capital. In 1786 the state legislature decided to move the capital from Charleston to a more central location. A site was chosen in Richland County, which is in the geographic center of the state, and a new town was laid out. Richland County’s boundaries were formally incorporated on Dec. 18, 1799. Cotton from the surrounding plantations was shipped through Columbia and later manufactured into textiles there. General William T. Sherman captured Columbia during the Civil War, and his troops burned the town and parts of the county on February 17, 1865. The U. S. Army returned on more friendly terms in 1917, when Fort Jackson was established, which is now the largest and most active Initial Entry Training Center in the U.S. Army. The South Carolina State House is located in downtown Columbia.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 772 square miles (2,000 km2), of which 757 square miles (1,960 km2) is land and 15 square miles (39 km2) (1.9%) is water.[4] Richland County is situated in the center of South Carolina.

As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 384,504 people, 145,194 households, and 89,357 families residing in the county.[10] The population density was 507.9 inhabitants per square mile (196.1/km2). There were 161,725 housing units at an average density of 213.6 per square mile (82.5/km2).[11] The racial makeup of the county was 47.3% white, 45.9% black or African American, 2.2% Asian, 0.3% American Indian, 0.1% Pacific islander, 1.9% from other races, and 2.2% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 4.8% of the population.[10] In terms of ancestry, 9.6% were German, 8.6% were English, 7.6% were Irish, and 7.1% were American.[12]

Get Information on Pharmacy Technician Courses College Richland SC

Richland SC pharmacy stocked medicationsFinding the ideal pharmacist tech training is a crucial first step to starting your career in a fulfilling profession where helping people with their health is your mission. Traditionally, most pharmacy technicians were trained “on the job”. These days, the majority of pharmacies can no longer operate this way and much prefer to hire formally trained techs. Training is furnished by trade schools, vocational and technical colleges, as well as community colleges. The majority of pharmacy tech colleges incorporate both classroom and clinical training. As we have discussed in this article, it’s essential to select a program that is accredited and will prepare you for certification. This applies both for online classes and for those attended on campus. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Pharmacy Technician Courses College. But if you make use of our other suggestions you will be able to evaluate colleges so that you are sure to make the best choice. With the appropriate training and dedication you can accomplish your goal to become a pharmacist technician in Richland SC.

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