The pharmacy industry is booming and pharmacy technicians are in higher demand than ever before. In 2004, California state government passed a law that required every pharmacy technician to have a certified license. If you are pursuing this career and live in California then you will want o enroll in an accredited school to receive training first. There are a variety of schooling options to choose from, including vocational schools, technical schools, universities and adult training programs. Enrolling in most of these programs is easy and requires no more than a high school degree to qualify.
Pharmacy techs work directly under the supervision of a licensed pharmacist. They are considered the backbone of the pharmacy since they carry most of the work load. Technicians fill prescriptions, assist patients, work directly with physician offices and insurance companies and manage the daily administrative duties within the pharmacy. Besides retail stores, many pharmacists work in hospitals or nursing homes. One of the unique aspects of this career is that it isn’t your typical 9 to 5 job. Some pharmacy techs work a night shift or odd hours. Rather than sitting in a cubicle all day you will find yourself interacting with a variety of people throughout the day. Good communication skills are a must! Since you will be dealing with many sick and chronically ill people, this profession is well suited for calm and compassionate personality types.
Salaries on the Rise for Pharmacy Technicians
In California, the average salary for an entry level pharmacy tech ranges from $27,000 – $34,000, while the average salary for a more experienced pharmacy technician ranges from $31,000 – $40,000. A pharmacy technician supervisor can earn as much as $53,000 a year!
Because of the growing demand for qualified pharmacy techs in California, employers tend to pay well.
Top Cities for Certification in California
- Los Angeles
- San Diego
- San Jose
- San Francisco
- Long Beach
- Santa Ana
What to Expect From These Courses
Some of the training you receive will include how to calculate dosages, how to prepare and distribute prescriptions drugs, the basics pf pharmacology and basic medical terminology. You will also learn about different drug classifications and federal and state laws that regulate prescription drugs. Many training programs also include an externship where you will get hands-on training.
Top Pharmacy Technician Schools in California
American Career College
4021 Rosewood Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90004
Earn your diploma as a pharmacy technician and get ready for an exciting career! At ACC you’ll learn pharmacy law, basic chemistry, pharmacy procedures and medical terminology. You’ll also learn how to maintain patient records via a computer database.
2101 W. Garvey Ave. N.
West Covina, CA 91790
Here you will receive training in Retail/Communications, Drug Distribution, Pharmacology, Home Health and CPR. You will also participate in an Internship and Job Preparedness Workshop. These career skills will travel with you wherever you go.
American College of Healthcare (ACH)
11801 Pierce St., Suite 100
Riverside, California 92505
ACH is centrally located in Riverside and prepares you to become a Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT). The program cover a variety of subject areas, such as medical and pharmaceutical terminology, pharmacy and law ethics and pharmaceutical calculation.
9738 Lincoln Village Dr., Suite 100
Sacramento , CA 95827
Anthem College offers a diploma on Pharmacy Technician that provides extensive hand-on training for students. Students study compounding, pharmacology, chemotherapy and how to calculate dosages, among other things. Students are taught in small, personalized classes at times that are convenient for them. After completing the required courses you are placed in an externship where you can gain real-world job skills.
2665 North First Street, Suite 102
San Jose, CA 95134
Biohealth college prepares students for entry level positions assisting the pharmacist in his or her practice or other pharmacy settings. The curriculum includes pharmacy theory, lab instruction and clinical experience at local pharmacies.
Carrington College California
901 Corporate Center Dr. Suite 300
Pomona, CA 91768
Carrington College offers an Associates Degree in Pharmacy Technology. Areas of study include pharmacy law, ethics, medical terminology, abbreviations and symbols used in prescribing, and dispensing and charting medications. Students are taught how to compound medications in a simulated pharmacy setting.
Los Positas College
3000 Campus Hill Drive
Livermore, CA 94551-7623
The Health Schiences Program at Las Positas College will prepare students to become well-rounded pharmacy technicians. Students who have successfully graduated will go on to obtain entry level positions at pharmacies, hospitals, nursing homes and other pharmacuetical locations. Some advance into specialty fields such as chemo therapy ot nuclear pharmacy.
Santa Barbara Business College
303 East Plaza Drive
Santa Maria, CA 93454
(Additional location in Bakersfield)
Earn your Associate’s Degree in Pharmacy Technology at SBBC. Graduates are prepared for entry level pharmacy careers and will be equipped to assist a licensed pharmacist.
West Los Angeles College
Allied Health Division, MSB Building
9000 Overland Avenue
Culver City, CA 90230
West LA College offers certificate programs for Pharmacy Clerk, Pharmacy Technician (Basic and Advanced), and an A.S in Pharmacy Technology. The college has a growing network of affiliations with retail and hospital pharmacies and job openings are frequently posted on campus. Before beginning the clinical portion of these programs students are required to clear and criminal background check and drug screen.
Career Networks Institute
702 Town and Country Road
Orange, CA, 92868
In just 30 short weeks you can be on your way to a new career as a pharmacy technician. CNI prepares you to work under a licensed pharmacist through an intense 24 week study program followed by a 6 week externship. They will also prepare you for the PTCE national certification exam and help you through the registration and licensing process.
The Demand for Pharmacy Technician Jobs is Increasing
More and more pharmacies are being used as patient care centers, forcing pharmacists to become more involved in patient care. This shift has caused the role of the pharmacy technician to expand even more as they begin to inherit many of the administrative duties previously held by pharmacists and pharmacy aides. In light of this growing demand you can be sure that a career as a pharmacy technician will be lucrative and rewarding for many years to come.