Pharmacy Technician program paused
The Pharmacy Technician program is currently paused. There is no current date of resumption for the program. Contact us if you have any questions.
Start your future in healthcare at the crossroads where treatment, medicine, insurance, and patients connect.
Pharmacy Technicians (or Pharm Techs) are in high demand across the United States, and in Oregon. Pharmacy Technicians are often the person greeting customers at a pharmacy setting, whether its in a big box retailer or a small store setting. Pharmacy Technicians are knowledgeable about pharmacy systems and settings and are champions of customer service. Do you want an in-demand career where you can take pride in working directly with patients to deliver medications and provide excellent customer service? Become a Pharmacy Technician and help patients by validating prescriptions and preparing medications!
As a pharmacy technician, you will:
- Process and handle medications and instruct patients in their use
- Review prescription requests with doctors’ offices and insurance companies to ensure accuracy and payment
- Manage pharmaceutical inventory, health records, ordering and billing
After successfully completing the Pharmacy Technician program, you will be fully prepared to sit for the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam (PTCE) and begin a rewarding career working with pharmaceuticals.
The number of jobs for pharmacy technicians is expected to increase in the coming years and the average wage is nearly $20 per hour, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Demand for qualified healthcare professionals is growing as the baby boomer population ages, seeking medications to treat common ailments, and as new prescription drugs are approved and released to the American public.
Internship and career planning opportunities are available to you through referral to PCC’s Career Pathways, which offers you:
- Career planning during Term II of the Pharmacy Technician program. You will complete a tailored resume, develop a networking plan, and prepare for non-technical aspects of internship and employment.
- Externship or internship immediately after completing the Pharmacy Technician program, 120 hours supported with coaching. You will receive job placement support, referrals, and connections to employers.
Additional Cost to Student: $670, over 2 terms
The Institute for Health Professionals’ Pharmacy Technician program is a 2-part course, totaling 160 hours. Combine online lectures with hands-on, weekly onsite practicums at a local Pharmacy in order to gain a broad knowledge base that will prepare you to pass the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam (PTCE).
You must apply to be considered for admission into this program. Only individuals who meet or exceed the minimum requirements listed in the “How to Enroll section” of the application and submit a complete application packet will be considered for admission. Please carefully read over the requirements before applying.
In Term I, students will learn about:
- Practicing pharmacy, pharmacy law, and regulations
- Practical and administrative standards
- Basic pharmacology, therapeutic drug classes, body systems, common conditions, diseases, and related medical terminology
- Generic versus brand drug names, look-alike and sound-alike medications, common dosages, and routes of administration
- Drug references and information systems
- Basic to advanced pharmacy measurements, abbreviations, and calculations
- Requirements for passing the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam (PTCE)
In Term II (PREREQ: Term I), students will focus on:
- Basic to advanced pharmacy measurements, abbreviations, and calculations
- Learning to read and identify components of medication labels, written and electronic prescriptions, and DEA numbers
- Processing and handling medication and medication orders
- Sterile and non-sterile compounding, sterile preparation, and aseptic techniques
- Inventory management, ordering systems, billing, and electronic health-records systems
- Patient safety, medication safety, and quality assurance
- Workplace interaction, professionalism, and other soft-skills
- Test-taking strategies that will prepare you for board certification
At successful completion of both terms, students will be able to:
- Sit for the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam (PTCE)
- Use appropriate medical terminology for drug names, classes, body systems, common conditions, and diseases in everyday duties
- Read, identify, and utilize information on medication labels, prescriptions, and DEA numbers to process medications and apply practices of patient safety and quality assurance
- Apply pharmacological concepts to the preparation and distribution of medications, including the calculation of pharmaceutical measurements, incorporating compounding, sterile preparation, and aseptic techniques
- Recognize pharmacy technology, including inventory management, ordering, billing, and electronic health-records systems
- Integrate appropriate workplace interactions, professionalism and other soft-skills necessary for long-term employment
Time: 2 terms, 160 hours, approximately 6 months to complete
Tuition: $3,000.00, excluding books
Tuition is due at the time of registration, or students may set up a 6 month payment plan with the Portland Community College Business Office. For Information about the payment plan, please visit the PCC Payment Plan webpage.
Joanna Mcnicholas is a Certified Pharmacy Technician who has over 5 years of experience in the Pharmacy world. She is currently managing the Specialty Prior Authorization Department and is Lead Technician in her retail pharmacy. Joanna graduated from the PCC Pharmacy Technician program in 2017. She has created curriculum and taught pharmacy clerks and pharmacy technicians the needed material to pass their certification exams while working in the pharmacy. Teaching has always been a passion of hers, she is excited for the opportunity to work with PCC in teaching new Pharmacy Technicians.
What should I do next to get into the training?
Follow the steps at the bottom of this page.
Can I use federal financial aid?
No, federal financial aid does not apply to non-credit courses. Students are required to pay, in full, once they are notified of their acceptance into the program.
Do I need to submit the original documentation of paperwork required in my application?
No. Please only submit copies of your original documents.
Do I have to submit to a background check or drug screening?
No, we do not require Pharmacy Technician applicants to submit to a background check or drug screening.
How long does this course take?
The program is 2 terms in length. Part of the course is online, and part in an in-classroom environment.
Will this prepare me for a national certification exam?
Yes. Upon program completion, you will be prepared to sit for the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board’s PTCB exam.
Upcoming Course Schedule
Don’t see the course you want? Contact us for more information.
The Pharmacy Technician program is currently paused and applications are not being accepted. There is no current date of resumption for the program. Contact us if you have any questions.
For more information, please email Bem Hanamoto.
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