Working as a pharmacy technician can be very rewarding work. This type of work involves preparing medication and assisting customers in getting their prescriptions. You may think of a pharmacy technician as working in a retail pharmacy, but there are actually a few different places where a pharmacy technician can work, and there are different job options and opportunities with this type of work. Below, we will answer the question of where you can work as a pharmacy technician. Check it out!
When people think of a pharmacy, they are probably thinking of a retail pharmacy. This type of pharmacy sees customers and prepares and provides them with the medication that a doctor prescribed to them. A retail pharmacy can be a standalone building, or it can be found in another business such as a grocery store or mass merchandisers like Target or Walmart.
When a pharmacy technician works in a retail pharmacy, they will work specific shifts, and their main focus will be customer service. In a retail pharmacy, you could work day shifts or evening and night shifts. You also may be required to work weekends as a retail pharmacist.
Another place where pharmacy technicians can be found is a compounding pharmacy. A compounding pharmacy is a little different than your average retail pharmacy because compounding pharmacies specialize in specialized and custom prescriptions. Working at this type of pharmacy means you will need to focus on skills like pharmacy calculations because you will be assisting with specific medications. There is less of an emphasis on customer service skills in this type of pharmacy because you may or may not work with customers at all. You might just work in preparing and labeling different prescriptions and doing calculations.
Compound pharmacies are not as widespread as retail pharmacies, but you can apply for a job here if there is one in your specific area. The hours and requirements for this type of work will depend on your employer and their needs.
You can also work in a hospital as a pharmacy technician. Working in a hospital setting can be different from working in a retail pharmacy setting in a few different ways. One way that it is different is that pharmacy techs in a hospital generally spend most of their time preparing prescriptions as opposed to helping customers. A pharmacy technician in a hospital might also need to prepare IV solutions or fill syringes with medication. They can prepare medication for short or long term patients as well as preparing medication for emergency rooms and operating rooms.
The shifts you work as a pharmacy technician in a hospital will depend on what you get hired to do. Hospitals need pharmacy technicians 24 hours a day. This means you may have to work the night shift, but your schedule should remain similar from week to week.
Long-Term Healthcare Facilities
Hospitals are not the only healthcare facilities that need pharmacy technicians. Pharmacy techs are also needed in long term healthcare facilities like nursing homes, mental health facilities, and assisted living facilities. When you work in a nursing home or assisted living facility as a pharmacy technician, you will fill prescriptions for the patients. You will prepare medications for individual clients with a specific dosage. For example, you will prepare medications that need to be taken with breakfast as well as medicine that needs to be taken later in the day. Then, this medication will be stored safely so that it can be handed out to patients when they need it.
Working in a long-term healthcare facility can be a full-time or part-time job. This type of work may also include some weekend hours, but you will most likely have hours that are similar from day to day.
No matter where you want to work as a pharmacy technician, you need to have certain skills and abilities to do your job right. A good pharmacy technician is great at paying attention to details. This is because they have to be very specific with bottling and labeling prescription medication, and they have to be sure there are no mistakes. Many types of pharmacy technicians also have to have good customer service skills, but some pharmacy techs will not interact with customers quite as much. Pharmacy technicians also need to know basic pharmacology as well as pharmacy calculations and mathematics.
If you would like to learn more about becoming a pharmacy technician, you can check out our pharmacy tech training program here. FVI School of Nursing and Technology can provide you with the training you need to succeed as a pharmacy technician no matter where you plan to work. Reach out to us today.
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