Are you considering a career as a pharmacy technician in Phoenix, Arizona? If so, obtaining a Pharmacy Technician Certification is the perfect first step. In this comprehensive guide, we'll discuss everything you need to know about becoming a pharmacy technician, the certification process, licensing requirements, the time it takes to complete training, salary information, and the overall job outlook. Plus, we've included pharmacy technician schools in Phoenix, Arizona below.
Phoenix, Arizona Pharmacy Technician Training Schools
How to Become a Pharmacy Technician in Phoenix, Arizona
Becoming a pharmacy technician requires a combination of education, training, and experience. Follow these steps to get started:
Complete a high school diploma or GED: Most pharmacy technician programs require a high school diploma or GED as a minimum requirement.
Enroll in a pharmacy technician training program in Phoenix, Arizona: Many community colleges, vocational schools, and online institutions offer pharmacy technician training programs. These programs typically take 6 months to 2 years to complete and cover subjects like medical terminology, pharmaceutical calculations, and pharmacy law.
Complete an externship or gain work experience: Gaining hands-on experience is crucial for aspiring pharmacy technicians. Many training programs include an externship, or you can gain experience through part-time or volunteer work at a pharmacy.
Obtain Pharmacy Technician Certification: Passing the certification exam, such as the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam (PTCE) or the ExCPT exam, is required by most states and employers.
Apply for a pharmacy technician license in Phoenix, Arizona: Many states require pharmacy technicians to be licensed. Check with the Phoenix, Arizona Board of Pharmacy for specific licensing requirements.
Phoenix, Arizona Pharmacy Technician Certification Process
There are two primary certification options for pharmacy technicians in the United States:
Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT) – PTCB: Offered by the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB), the CPhT certification requires passing the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam (PTCE). The PTCE is a computer-based exam consisting of 90 multiple-choice questions, with a time limit of 2 hours. To be eligible, candidates must have completed a pharmacy technician training program or equivalent work experience and have a high school diploma or GED.
Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT) – NHA: The National Healthcareer Association (NHA) offers the ExCPT exam for pharmacy technicians. The ExCPT is a computer-based exam with 120 multiple-choice questions and a time limit of 2 hours and 10 minutes. Candidates must have completed a pharmacy technician training program or have equivalent work experience, as well as a high school diploma or GED.
Both certifications require recertification every 2 years, which includes completing 20 hours of continuing education (CE) and paying a recertification fee.
Phoenix, Arizona Pharmacy Technician Licensing Process
Licensing requirements for pharmacy technicians vary by state. Some states require pharmacy technicians to be registered or licensed, while others only require certification. It's essential to consult the Phoenix, Arizona Board of Pharmacy for specific requirements. Generally, the licensing process involves completing an application, submitting proof of education and certification, and paying a licensing fee. Some states may also require a background check and fingerprinting.
How Long Does It Take to Become a Pharmacy Technician in Phoenix, Arizona?
The time it takes to become a pharmacy technician depends on the individual's chosen path. Generally, it involves the following:
Pharmacy technician training program: These programs typically take between 6 months and 2 years to complete, depending on whether you choose a certificate, diploma, or associate degree program.
Externship or work experience: The duration of an externship or work experience will vary, but it's generally recommended to accumulate at least a few months of hands-on experience before applying for certification.
Preparing for and taking the certification exam: The time spent preparing for the exam varies by individual, but candidates should allocate sufficient time to study and review material before taking the test.
Obtaining state licensure: The timeline for receiving a state license varies, but it usually takes a few weeks to a few months once all required documentation and fees have been submitted.
In total, the process of becoming a certified pharmacy technician can take anywhere from 1 to 3 years, depending on the chosen training program, work experience, and the time it takes to obtain certification and licensure.
Pharmacy Technician Salary Phoenix, Arizona
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), as of May 2020, the median annual wage for pharmacy technicians was $35,100. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $25,400, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $50,430.
Phoenix, Arizona Pharmacy technician salaries can vary depending on factors such as experience, education, certification, and geographic location. Certified pharmacy technicians (CPhTs) may earn higher wages than non-certified technicians, and working in hospitals or specialty pharmacies may also result in higher pay.
Find out more about Pharmacy Technician Salary in Arizona
Phoenix, Arizona Pharmacy Technician Job Outlook
The job outlook for Phoenix, Arizona pharmacy technicians is favorable, with employment expected to grow 4 percent from 2019 to 2029, according to the BLS. This growth is attributed to an aging population, increased demand for prescription medications, and the need for pharmacy technicians to take on more responsibilities in pharmacies.
Obtaining a Pharmacy Technician Certification in Phoenix, Arizona is an essential step toward a rewarding career in the healthcare field. With the right education, training, and certification, you can enjoy a fulfilling job with competitive pay and a positive job outlook. By following this guide and meeting the requirements set by the Phoenix, Arizona Board of Pharmacy, you'll be well on your way to a successful career as a pharmacy technician in Phoenix, Arizona.