Pharmacy technicians have a rewarding career in the field of healthcare and prescription medicine. They serve as liaisons between pharmacists, medical doctors, insurance companies, and patients. They support licensed pharmacists in retail, chain, hospital, and mail order pharmacies by processing prescription orders, attending to customer service issues, performing administrative duties, labeling containers, recording drugs, and managing inventory. In a hospital setting, they may prepare mixtures to fight infections and prepare liquid food. Pharmacy technician training programs incorporate classroom, laboratory, and clinical externships to prepare students for success on a national certification exam, required for certification in Washington, and to play a supportive role to pharmacists in various health care settings.
North Seattle College
The established pharmacy technician certificate program at North Seattle College prepares students for national certification and practice as a pharmacy technician. Students receive comprehensive training in the classroom and at two different locations that will prepare them to pass the certification exam. Accredited by the Society of Health System Pharmacists, the program has a strong reputation in the healthcare community and a 99.6 percent pass rate. The curriculum features over 432 hours of externship in leading community pharmacies as well as in-depth training in pharmacology, computerized prescription processing, and IV-making. In the recently renovated, fully equipped lab, students have opportunities to develop their skills before participating in the externship. Classes meet 2 days per week – subject to change. The student must complete a total of 49 credits for the certificate. The duration of the program is 9 months.
- Must attend an information session and provide test scores and transcripts
- Provide evidence of high school completion or GED equivalency
- Provide college transcripts showing completion of Elementary Algebra and English 097/098 College Preparatory Reading and Writing
- Submit the completed pharmacy technician application and non-refundable application fee ($35)
- Provide a color copy of photo ID
- Complete the attestation form and a national background check
- Provide documentation of good physical and mental health and immunization (MMR, DT, Hepatitis B, Varicella, and a current TB skin test)
- Submit copy of drug test results
Tuition for the program is $5,538.96 plus $1,200 for books and supplies.
- Website: https://northseattle.edu/
- Address: 9600 College Way North, Seattle, Washington 98103
- Phone: (206) 934-3600
With a combination of chemistry, math, and medicine, the pharmacy technician curriculum at PIMA prepares students to provide medications to patients, count tablets and label containers, mix IV solutions, accept electronic prescriptions from a doctor’s office, enter orders electronically, verify the accuracy of prescriptions, manage stock and inventory, and receive written prescriptions. IV therapy, a valuable skill set for employment in a hospital setting, is included as part of the training to give graduates a competitive advantage. Other areas of study include pharmacy math, pharmacology, pharmacy computer applications, fundamentals of chemistry, pharmacy law and ethics, inventory maintenance, principles of customer service, laboratory skills, CPR and First Aid, and anatomy, physiology, and terminology for a total of 34.5 credits (840 contact hours). The nationally accredited program prepares graduates for the National Pharmacy Technician Certification Examination (CPhT) in just 9 months.
- Must have a high school diploma or GED
- Must be 16 years or older – applicants under 18 must obtain parental consent
- Submit official high school and any applicable college transcripts
- Take and pass the required entrance exam
- Complete a satisfactory background check
The program cost of $17,004 includes tuition, registration fee, textbooks, uniforms, tax, and technology fee.
- Website: http://pmi.edu/programs/certificate/pharmacy-technician
- Address: 555 S Renton Village Place, Suite 400, Renton, WA 98057
- Phone: 800-477-PIMA
The Pharmacy Technician program at Charter College prepares students for an entry-level position as an assistant to a licensed pharmacist. The program curriculum covers 70 quarter credit hours in basic pharmacy calculations, customer service, law and ethics governing pharmacy practice, drug distribution systems, pharmacy operations, and preparation of sterile dosage forms. A 180-hour clinical externship at a local establishment provides opportunities for students to develop skills in a real-world setting. Graduates are prepared to pass a national pharmacy technician certification exam that is accredited by the NCAA, which is mandatory for Washington students. Students must pass the exam before the externship. The duration of the program is 10 months. The program is offered in blended format.
- Must be at least 18 years of age
- Must have a high school diploma or GED
- Submit a completed application for admission
- Attend an admission interview
- Complete the health requirements
- Must pass a background check administered by a third-party vendor of the college
Tuition for the accelerated program is $23,100.
- Website: https://www.chartercollege.edu/
- Address: 3700 Pacific Highway East, Suite 407, Fife, Washington
- Phone: 253-252-4200
Renton Technical College
Students enrolled in the pharmacy technician program at Renton College develop the skills needed to assist pharmacists in all areas of pharmacy practice. They learn how to maintain records, enter orders into a computerized system, compound medicines for dispensing, calculate dosages, and mix intravenous solutions. Course topics include college success, pharmacy technician fundamentals and ethics, top 200 drugs, pharmacology, outpatient pharmacy preparations and record keeping, admixture advanced techniques, medical terminology, leadership and customer service, pharmacy law and references, and pharmacy practice internship. Apart from lectures in the classrooms, students also participate in an externship experience in a retail and hospital pharmacy. Graduates must obtain a state license to practice from the Washington State Board of Pharmacy. The program is open for enrollment in the fall. Students must complete 80 credits to graduate from the program with a certificate of completion or 95 credits for the associates of applied science degree. Classes meet Monday through Friday from 8:00 am to 2:30 pm.
- Must be 18 years or older by the beginning of the first quarter
- Must be a high school graduate – current high students and those with a high school equivalency are also accepted into the program
- Must be fluent in English
- Must pass a criminal background check
- Submit record of up-to-date vaccination for MMR, Varicella, TdaP, Hepatitis B, and influenza, TB test
- Must have current health insurance
- Submit a physician’s evaluation indicating good health
Tuition for Washington residents is $10,403. The cost of books and supplies are not included.
- Website: https://www.rtc.edu/
- Address: 3000 NE 4th St., Renton, WA 98056
- Phone: (425) 235-2352
Edmonds Community College
Edmonds Community College’s pharmacy technician program helps students develop the skills and knowledge to qualify for an entry-level position in a hospital, retail, or other pharmacy settings. Students must complete a total of 39 credits, after prerequisites, to earn a certificate of completion. Course topics include career and college success healthcare, healthcare provider, orientation to pharmacy practice, pharmacy terminology, over the counter drugs, applied pharmacology, pharmaceutical calculations, prescription processing, pharmacy law and ethics, preparations and aseptic technique, and pharmacy clinical. The duration for completing the program’s requirements is typically 3 quarters – two-quarters of didactic instruction and one-quarter of educational coursework which runs concurrently with a 264-hour externship. In the third quarter, students must pay for the PTCB national test to be eligible to apply for licensure from the state of Washington. The ExCPT Pharmacy Exam is the alternative to the PTCB exam.
- Complete the prerequisite courses with a grade C or higher – Human Body, Introduction to Health Care, Basic Medical Terminology, Basic Life Support, and HIV/AIDS
- Submit documentation of immunization – TB test, hepatitis B, MMR, Varicella, Tdap, seasonal influenza
- Must have current CPR certification – American Heart Association (AHA) BLS Provider Card only
- Complete a national criminal background check and Washington State Patrol Background Check
- Must have professional liability insurance
- Complete a satisfactory drug screen
- Must have personal health insurance
Tuition costs $4,408.56 for core courses. It does not include the cost of prerequisite courses, textbooks, supplies, and fees.
- Website: https://www.edmonds.edu/default.html
- Address: 20000 68th Ave. W Lynnwood, WA 98036
- Phone: 425-640-1459
Clover Park Technical College
Clover Park facilitates both a certificate and degree pharmacy technician program. Graduates have the competencies to execute the duties of a pharmacy technician under the direction of a licensed pharmacist. In the classroom, students learn the basics of customer service, aseptic techniques, pharmacy calculations, processing prescriptions, and human relations. Course topics include computer applications, math for health occupations, introduction to pharmacy and pharmacy law, pharmaceutical calculations, hospital practice with sterile processing, generic drug names, and medical terminology. A clinical component of the program prepares students for the role of a pharmacy technician through 32 hours of weekly practice in a community pharmacy. The duration of the program is five quarters.
- Must be at least 18 years of age
- Must have health insurance for the duration of the clinical
- Must must have a high school diploma or equivalency
- Meet the college’s levels for reading, writing, and math, and complete college-level math, computer applications, and medical terminology courses
- Complete a comprehensive background check – certain criminal convictions will disqualify candidates from admission and state certification
- Submit record of current immunizations for MMR, Hepatitis B series, Flu, Varicella, Tetanus/Diphtheria, and TB test are required for the clinical externship
- Provide proof of current American Heart Association CPR for the Healthcare Professional
Tuition for the certificate program is $8,394 not including fees, supplies, books, insurance, national exam fee, and state certification.
- Website: https://www.cptc.edu/
- Address: 4500 Steilacoom Blvd SW, Lakewood WA 98499-4004
- Phone: 253-589-5800