Pharmacy technician Pharmaceutical technician
Pharmacy technicians prepare prescriptions. They're supervised by a pharmacist.
1. Entry requirements
To become a pharmacy technician, you'll need to:
- have 4 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), including science, maths and English.
- start as a pre-registration pharmacy technician
- do on-the-job training and get a college qualification in Pharmacy Service Skills
- register with the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC)
You could get into this through an apprenticeship.
2. Skills required
- good maths and IT skills
- accuracy and attention to detail
- the ability to explain instructions clearly to customers
- administration skills for record keeping
3. What you'll do
Your day-to-day tasks may include:
- choosing the correct items for a prescription
- weighing ingredients, measuring liquids and counting tablets
- putting together ointments and medicines
- making sure prescriptions are legal and accurate
- creating labels to tell people how to take medicine
- ordering new stock using computerised systems
- giving advice to customers about medicines
- handling confidential information
Starter: £19,000 to £22,000
Experienced: £22,000 to £28,000
Highly Experienced: £28,000 to £31,000
These figures are a guide.
5. Working hours, patterns and environment
You'll usually work 35 to 40 hours a week, including weekends and evenings. You may work on a rota.
Your employer will usually provide a uniform and protective clothing.
6. Career path and progression
You could work in a hospital or a community-based pharmacy. You may also find work advising GPs on pharmacy services. You could work in the prison service or armed forces.
In a hospital, you could move to an administrative or supervisory post. Or you could move into a specialist role like clinical technician, working with healthcare professionals and patients on wards.
In a community pharmacy, you could become supervisor or manager, or go into sales or marketing. You could also move into research, development and production work in hospitals or the pharmaceutical industry.
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Last updated: 18 August 2017