Community colleges add pharmacy tech courses

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. Pharmacy technician courses are being added to the curriculums of community colleges. Lincoln Land Community College located here last week announced a partnership with MRxI Corporation to launch a program aimed at addressing a shortage of pharmacy technicians while giving potential future pharmacists a taste of the healthcare profession.

The 75-hour pharmacy technician course is designed to teach students the fundamentals and particulars of being a pharmacy technician. Healthcare workers wanting to enhance their knowledge of prescription drugs, students interested in being a pharmacy technician and future pharmacists can benefit from the program, which includes training in pharmacy math, generics, pharmacy law and interpreting prescriptions.

The class also introduces students to various pharmacy practice settings and covers drug classes and interactions, daily pharmacy operations and basic physiology. Upon completion of this course, students will be efficient in completing daily tasks performed in a pharmacy setting and be prepared for entry-level pharmacy positions.

On average, starting pay for pharmacy technicians is about $10 to $15 an hour, the college stated, however certified technicians can earn 20 to 30 percent more. Chain retail pharmacies, hospitals and home health care pharmacies typically employ pharmacy technicians.

To enroll in the course, students will need to have a high school diploma or GED. Cost of the course is $975 and includes textbooks.

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