While the focus at pharmacies is often on the Pharmacist, the Pharmacy Technician plays an immensely important role. Thats because, according to Health Care Salary World, he or she is responsible for:
Counting pills according to the prescription;
Creating package and label prescriptions;
Taking in written prescriptions and processing the medication for pharmacists to verify;
Ensuring that the security and proper storage of drugs is maintained;
Responding to simple patient queries and directing them to pharmacists for clarification on issues concerning drug information;
Maintaining drug inventory and place drug orders;
Properly labeling drugs, supplies, and chemicals;
Mixing pharmaceutical compounds and prepare intravenous injections according to the written prescription;
Maintaining patient profiles and records of all medications given;
Keeping the work environment and equipment clean;
Processing medical insurance claims and accepting payments;
Assisting in giving medications to the patients in the hospitals
At Canadas Pharmacy Technician programs, such as the one offered at Centennial College, students can obtain training that will make them efficient at all of these tasks. The Centennial College program lasts two years and is based on the belief that the institutions learner-centred environment transforms Pharmacy Technician students to work within their scope of practice through a dynamic curriculum that is based on the National Association of Pharmacy Regulatory Authorities (NAPRA) competencies.
This curriculum includes classroom, lab work and three field placements. Lab work is completed at Morningside Campus, which houses fully equipped facilities that are set up as mock pharmacies with the latest software and tools of the trade. Among specific courses included in the program are: Ethics in Business, Pharmaceutical Calculations, Professional Practice and Drug Programs, Compounding, Introduction to Pharmacology, Institution Dispensing, Anatomy and Physiology, Pharmacy Management and more.
Meanwhile, the final-semester placement sees students working at an institutional pharmacy setting and a community pharmacy practice setting in order to gain practical experience applying the knowledge and skills acquired during the preceding academic semesters. While the placements differ, during both students gain a working knowledge in the preparation and distribution of pharmaceuticals, and the roles and responsibilities of the pharmacy technician. They are also exposed to an overview of the workflow processes, in facilitating the smooth functioning of an effective and efficient pharmacy.
It is worth noting that the Pharmacy Technician program at Centennial College is accredited with the Canadian Council for Accreditation of Pharmacy Programs. Additionally, graduates are prepared and eligible to pursue the process to become a Registered Pharmacy Technician (RPhT) with the Ontario College of Pharmacists (OCP).
If they want to be successful in each Pharmacy Technician course within the offering, applicants should be aware that due to the challenging nature of this profession, they should have strong critical thinking, mathematical and English communication skills and a commitment to self-directed thinking. Additionally, applicants must meet a number of program admission requirements.
Author wrote this piece in which she describes the aspects that make up Centennial Colleges Pharmacy Technician training, including a field placement, lab work and theoretical lectures.