A pharmacy technician career is a great career path that we are glad you are looking in pursuing. Of course, this begins with education. As a student, you will be following the same educational path as a pharmacist but you will only need to complete the first phase of the training. A pharmacist goes on to complete a degree in Phar.D. but you will not need to. As a pharmacy technician, you will be serving the patients "on the front line" and taking the workload off the pharmacist. Your career will start faster and will be just as rewarding.
Of course, there will be a difference in earnings. As PharmD technician, you will start at a lower salary than a pharmacist will but you will begin your career seven years earlier that a pharmacist would. The type of income you can earn will depend on your geographical location as well as your prior experience. As to the future prospects for the pharmacy technician career, they have never been brighter. Almost any pharmaceutical profession is hot right now. With lifespans increasing due to good medicine and the population growing, the demand for services is high. Pharmacists simply cannot handle everything by themselves. So pharmacy technicians are needed to fill the gap. Currently the average ratio is four pharmacy technicians to one pharmacist. This is only going to increase and that means more jobs!
You have a number of options for the setting that you will be working within once you have your pharmacy technician certification. While the over-all duties are the same from one type of work environment to another, there are many differences as well. This is an important factor as you might not like working in a retail pharmacy but a job in a hospital pharmacy would satisfy you. You should keep in mind that seven out of 10 pharmacy technicians work in the retail pharmacy field. If you are interested in the other jobs, you will need to get good training and have a good resume, as you will come to find that the competition in the pharmacy technician career field is intense.
Of those remaining 3 out of ten jobs, two are in hospital pharmacies. The remaining 10 percent work in even more obscure fields such as mail order pharmacies, wholesale distribution centers and clinics, too. The single most important factor to consider is that it will require well-developed people skills to pursue a pharmacy technician career. You will be dealing with people that are not well and afraid, you will need to be able to reassure them and soothe them. You will need to be very alert and dedicated; you cannot just show up for work and wait for a paycheck! You will need to be very detail oriented and focused. You need to be very self-reliant and confident so that the pharmacist will feel confident in relying on you. Your desire to help people in need and your intelligence will be the key to your career success, remember, you should pursue what you love and the money will follow.