Chapter 2 the pharmacy technician

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  • Give students the PTCB examination application and explain the process of filling it out.


  • 1. The Pharmacy Technician 4E Chapter 2The Pharmacy Technician
  • 2. Chapter Outline The Pharmacy Technician Personal Standards Training & Competency Certification
  • 3. Pharmacy Technician A pharmacy technician, also called the pharmacy assistant.  Works in a pharmacy.  Works under the direct supervision of a licensed pharmacist.  Assists in pharmacy activities that do not require the professional judgment of a pharmacist.
  • 4. Pharmacist The pharmacist provides  The final check on the original prescription with the medication bottle and label.  Patient counseling - has the regal responsibility.
  • 5. Pharmacy Technicians Role Originally, many pharmacy techs were trained as medics in the military. Returned after service to take positions in hospitals. In community pharmacy, the pharmacy tech evolved from clerk or cashier to a pharmacist’s assistant. A pharmacy technician assists the pharmacist with routine functions.  Leaves professional decision making and judgment calls to the pharmacist.
  • 6. Pharmacy Technicians Role Receiving prescriptions Using computer Inventory control Taking patient information Filling prescriptions Ordering Compounding Working with a team of health care professionals
  • 7. Evolution of the Pharmacy Technician’s Role Without pharmacy technicians, pharmacists would not have sufficient time for the duties involved in “pharmaceutical care.”  Pharmacy technicians do not have the skill or the training or the legal accountability to do them. Pharmaceutical Care functions include:  Counseling patients and reviewing medication profiles.  Monitoring for side effects and adverse reactions.  Screening patients for disease.  Discussing cost-effective drug therapy options with the prescriber.
  • 8. Pharmacy TechniciansAs of 2008, there are 326,300 Pharmacy Technicians employed in the U.S. By 2018, the demand will increase by 31%.
  • 9. Work Environments and Conditions Employment for Pharmacy Technicians  Community pharmacies (i.e., drugstores) are the most common workplace.  Hospital pharmacies are the second most common work place. Others  Home healthcare and long-term care facilities .  Specialized area of practice (e.g., nuclear pharmacy) with additional training.  Mail order and internet Rx.  Pharmaceutical wholesale.
  • 10. The Pharmacy Technicians Scope of practice  What individuals may and may not do in their jobs.  Pharmacists dispense, counsel, and advice physicians on drug related issues.  Pharmacy Tech assist pharmacists in areas where pharmacists skills or expertise is not required. Job Description is written a document that states the specific responsibilities and tasks for pharmacy technicians which differs by settings.
  • 11. Personal Standards Dependable  Performing the job as required.  Showing up on time.  Do what is required. Detail oriented  Drugs are dangerous substances if not properly handled.  Small mistake can lead to death of a person. Trustworthy  Confidentiality of patient information.  Access to habit forming drugs/drug with abuse potential.  Access to expensive drug products.
  • 12. Personal Standards Health  Has to be in good health or ease of making mistakes, contracting diseases. Hygiene  Deals with several people, patients and customers  Professional image. Appearance  White lab jacket, grooming, badge, etc.
  • 13. CharacteristicsA successful pharmacy technician must possess a wide range of skills, knowledge, and aptitudes.Broad knowledge of pharmacy practice that includes: Good Mathematics and problem solving skills Language and medical terminology - excellent communication skills Computer skills Interpersonal skills - dedication to providing a critical healthcare service to customers and patients  high ethical standards, willingness to follow instructions  eagerness to learn
  • 14. CharacteristicsA successful pharmacy technician must possess a wide range of skills, knowledge, and aptitudes. Good research skills. Ability to perform accurately and calmly in hectic or stressful situations. Ability to multi-task or work on several projects at the same time.
  • 15. Health Insurance Portability & Accountability Act (HIP AA) - 1996 Refers to privacy and security of patient health related data.  Made health care providers responsible for the privacy and security of all identifiable patient health information  Called Protected Health Information – PHI. Apply to various formats including  Electronic data, computer files, electronic transmission.  Paper and hard copy documents.  Oral communication, or billing and claims.
  • 16. Health Insurance Portability & Accountability Act (HIP AA)- 1996 NO casual discussion with anyone about a patient data.  Includes patient’s family member, Patient’s friends, etc. without the patient’s permission/ after signing a waiver. NO discussion regarding topics including Medications and Health issues.  Making sure files and documents are securely stored where no unauthorized person can access them.
  • 17. Education and Licensing Requirements In the past, on-the-job training (training in the workplace) was sufficient for the tech working in a pharmacy. Now, formal technician training programs train pharmacy technicians for their expanded roles.  Initially centered in hospitals, now many programs are offered by community colleges and vocational and technical schools.
  • 18. Education and Licensing Requirements ASHP (American Society of Health-System Pharmacists)  Developed a model curriculum to meet the needs of all practice settings.  In some states pharmacy technicians must be certified to practice.  250 accredited schools and institutions by ASHP. Performance review  A performance review by an employer based on the job description.  An employer is legally responsible for pharmacy tech performance and competency.
  • 19. Evolution of the Pharmacy Technician’s Role  The essential differences in the duties of a pharmacist and a technician involve:  Accountability and legal responsibility.  Making decisions about the patient’s healthcare.  Most state boards of pharmacy recognize the existence and importance of the pharmacy technician.  Each state board of pharmacy regulates:  The activities of pharmacy technicians.  The ratio of pharmacy techs to pharmacists .
  • 20. CompetencyBeing qualified and capable and done in various ways. Testing – written test or/and practical demonstration to show competency. Performance is evaluated by an employer.  Includes performance reviews, comments by your supervisor, and complaints.
  • 21. Competency Continuing Education  An instructional program on new drugs and other pharmacy practice to keep knowledge updated. Probation Period  The time the pharmacy tech is expected to learn certain skills sets and is usually 6 months.  Leads to either permanent employee or dismissal from the job.
  • 22. Certification A legal proof or a document that an individual meets certain standards provided by a neutral professional organization. Two certification bodies: 1. PTCB (Pharmacy Technician Certification Board) offers a National Examination to become a CPhT (Certified Pharmacy Technician). 2. ICPT (Certification of Pharmacy Technicians) offers a National Examination to become ExCPT.
  • 23. As of 2010,PTCB certified 363,000 pharmacy technicians.
  • 24. Certification Certification must be renewed:  Every 2 years just like the pharmacist license  Certifications require “continuing Education”, 20 contact hours  Of these, one hour in pharmacy law every 2 years.
  • 25. The Pharmacy Technician Exam (PTCE) Length – 90 minutes, all multiple questions, computerize test. To take the examination, a pharmacy tech must  Complete high school or have a GED.  NEVER have been convicted of a felony. Tests in areas of:  Assisting the pharmacist in serving patients (66%).  Medication distribution (22%).  Inventory control systems of pharmacy operations (12%). Score – 650 out of 900 points.
  • 26. The Exam for the Certification of Pharmacy Technicians (ExCPT) Contains 110 multiple choice questions. To take the examination, a pharmacy tech must  Complete high school or have a GED.  NEVER been convicted of a felony.  Must be 18 years old. Test areas:  Regulations and technician duties (25%).  Drugs and drug products (23%).  Dispensing process (52%).
  • 27. Pharmacy Technician Examination Contact Information PTCE ExCPT 2536 S Old Hwy 94, Suite2215 Constitution Ave, NW 224 Washington, DC 20037 St. Charles, MO 63303 (202) 429-7596 (314) 442-6775
  • 28. Terms to Remember1. Certification2. Competent3. Confidentiality4. Inventory5. Personal inventory6. Professionals7. Scope of practice8. Technicians