A pharmacy technician is a licensed health care provider that performs pharmacy-related functions under the direct supervision of a licensed pharmacist. Technicians assist both the pharmacist and customers, and is often the first person the customer interacts with.
Pharmacy technicians are an essential member of the pharmacy team, and an essential element to the efficiency and safety of pharmacy.
Responsibilities of a technician have evolved from just counting pills and labeling bottles, but now include any of the following, depending on the type of pharmacy setting they are employed.
- Counting or measuring the accurate amount of medications
- Mixing compounds of medications
- Pricing, packaging, and labeling prescriptions
- Entering prescriptions into the pharmacy system for pharmacist verification
- Collecting patient information, payments, and medication history
- Collecting insurance paperwork and processing insurance claims
- Assisting with vaccinations
- Operating automated dispensing systems
- Managing inventory supplies
- Preparing intravenous medications
- Communicating with various healthcare providers regarding patient medications, including physicians for refill authorizations
What the technician is responsible for will depend on where they work.
- Retail: If technicians decide to work in a retail setting such as a grocery store, drugstore, or chain pharmacy, they will work directly with customers who are likely patients. Technicians are responsible for monitoring inventory levels, entering and processing medication orders, and any other functions needed to keep the pharmacy operating.
- Healthcare: Technicians who work in hospitals or similar healthcare settings deliver the drugs directly to other health professionals (nursing). They are also responsible for preparing intravenous medication and non-sterile compounds, monitoring inventory levels, and refilling automated dispensing machines.
Pharmacy technicians must be registered with the Texas State Board of Pharmacy and take a national certification exam. The Texas State Board of Pharmacy will perform a background check and require fingerprints. For more information on types of convictions that may prevent registration with the Board of Pharmacy, please refer to the documents on sanctions, and criminal offenses.
Cisco College offers a Level I certificate or an Associate of Applied Science in Pharmacy Technology for future pharmacy technicians. After successful completion of the required curriculum, students earn a certificate and are eligible to take the national certification exam from the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board. Students will also graduate with a Sterile Compounding Certificate.
By the completion of the Pharmacy Technology Certificate, students will have gained the following marketable skills:
- Critical Thinking
- Personal Responsibility
- Technical Knowledge
Please see pages 115-116 of the Cisco College Course Catalog for complete course information.
The Cisco College Pharmacy Technology Program offers full-time and part-time enrollment options.
The pharmacy technician training program has received at least a 50% pass rate in the PTCE licensure exam.
Future Students:Apply Now
What Can This Program Do For You
Potential Career Paths
Registered Pharmacy Technician in a variety of settings including:
- Retail / Community
- Mail Order
- Long-term Care
- Analyst Technician
- Sterile Compounding Technician
- Chemo Technician
Links to the following websites are provided for your convenience and information and do not constitute official endorsement by Cisco College.
- The Bureau of Labor Statistics ‘Occupational Outlook Handbook’ can help you find career information on duties, education and training, pay, and outlook for hundreds of occupations.
- Sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor, Career One Stop is a resource for career exploration, training, skill sets, wages & jobs.
The Pharmacy Technician program is a Health Sciences program beginning in the Fall semester of each year. Below is the suggested pathway for full-time prospective students looking to receive a Pharmacy Technician Level I Certificate, or Associate of Applied Science degree. All prerequisites are offered year round and part-time enrollment is available.
Students must successfully complete first semester courses with a "C" or better prior to enrolling in the second semester courses.
*Developmental Courses: Some students may need preparatory courses in English, Reading, or Math. Courses numbered below 1000 will not apply toward a certificate or degree.
Pharmacy Technician Level I Certificate (Abilene-only)
Prerequisites Credit Hours PHRA 1301 Introduction to Pharmacy 3 PHRA 1309 Math I 3 MDCA 1313 Medical Terminology 3
SEMESTER ONE SEMESTER TWO PHRA 1202 Pharmacy Law 2 PHRA 1349 Institutional Pharmacy 3 PHRA 1304 Pharmacotherapy & Disease Process
PHRA 1445 Comp Sterile Prep 4 PHRA 1306 Computerized Drug Delivery Systems 3 PHRA 1340 Pharm Third Party Pay 3 PHRA 1413 Community Pharmacy Practice 4 PHRA 1305 Drug Classification 3 TOTAL
Phra 1260 Clinical Pharmacy Technician I 2 Phra 2260 Clinical Pharmacy Technician II 2 PHRA 1143 Pharmacy Technician Certification Review 1
GRAND TOTAL HOURS 40
The faculty at Cisco College are very friendly. They will laugh with you, they will cry with you. They’ll be firm, but they always have your back. You can talk to them, and they’ll help you find a way to make sure that you feel accepted and comfortable-like family. You know you’ll always have someone to lean on.
– Tracey Morgan