Pharmacy technicians work under the supervision of pharmacists and are responsible for filling prescriptions, counting pills, taking phone calls, and carrying out basic customer service. He or she performs routine clerical duties, assists the pharmacist as needed, answers customer questions, and stocks inventory. Pharmacy technicians handle basic paperwork, insurance filings, may run errands for the pharmacist, and take patient information. He or she double checks prescriptions for accuracy, makes sure all medications are safe with no chance of interaction, and supplies customers with side effect data.
Other common duties include: contacting physicians for information, arranging mail order refills, and completing patient charts. Pharmacy technicians may work for private pharmacies, in hospitals, in nursing homes, or for mail order drug companies.
Pharmacy technicians are required to hold a high school diploma, and must be trained in pharmacy practices. He or she must also be certified as a pharmacy technician. Some employers require technicians to undergo an internship program as well. Other required skills include: record keeping skills, laboratory skills, knowledge of ethics law, general pharmaceutical knowledge, computer skills, communication skills, a keen attention to detail, and customer service skills. The need for pharmacy technicians is currently increasing with the growth rate for the industry exceeding the average career growth rate.
Pharmacy technicians are typically paid by the hour and earn an average of between $11.50 and $14.00 per hour.