What Pharmacy Technicians Do

Pharmacy technicians work under the direct supervision of a licensed pharmacist in preparing medications to dispense to patients. To do this, pharmacy technicians need to demonstrate proper pharmaceutical techniques and possess the interpersonal skills necessary to communicate effectively with patients as well as the pharmacist. Pharmacy technicians need to learn medication names, actions, uses, and doses. They need to have a working knowledge of medical and pharmaceutical terminology, pharmaceutical calculations, data entry and recordkeeping, and pharmacy law and ethics.

Types of Work Environments

  • Retail
  • Hospitals
  • Long-term care facilities

Education and Training Requirements

Pharmacy technicians earn a diploma, certificate, or associate degree from an accredited program. At this time, the national examination is separate and voluntary. However, employers favor applicants who have had formal training and have passed the national examination.


According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, the median salary of a pharmacy technician is approximately $43,330 per year.

Professional Organization

The National Pharmacy Technician Association

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