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Workforce Training & Continuing Education

Pharmacy Technician

The Pharmacy Technician program at Salt Lake Community College provides the necessary training and externship to prepare students to take the national Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam and to apply for state licensure with the Utah Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing.

Coursework includes practical and technical training in medical terminology, pharmacology, calculations, claims adjudication, pharmacy computer skills, sterile and non-sterile compounding, law, and fieldwork preparation. Students complete a total of 30 credit hours in a full-time daytime or evening program.

Now ASHP/ACPE accredited, PTCB-recognized Sterile compounding Education/Training program.

New students are accepted each spring and fall. Apply to SLCC and then use application below to apply for the program.

Courses

Course
Title
Prerequisite
Course PHAR 1040
Title Calculations & Law
Prerequisite
Description

This course covers pharmacy state and federal regulatory agencies and accountability for technicians. There will be a strong emphasis on pharmacy math, dosage calculations and conversions.

Course PHAR 1045
Title Communication Skills for Pharmacy
Prerequisite Admission to Pharmacy Technician cohort
Description

Description of Course: This course teaches pharmacy technician students the principles, skills, and practices that are the foundation for clear communication and the essential development of trust with future patients, healthcare professionals and co-workers. Students learn theory and basic principles of communication, develop practical skills using those tools and practice application of those skills in everyday encounters.  Role-play situations allow students to effectively communicate and fine- tune their communication skills in dealing with a variety of sensitive situations that arise in pharmacy practice.

Course PHAR 1030
Title Compounding/Sterile Products
Prerequisite
Description

This course reviews packaging, preservation and storage of compounded drugs. Coated tablets, solutions and suspensions are examined. Sterile procedures with vials and IV bottles and bags are explained. * There is a $75 course fee in addition to tuition.

Course CEPR 0100
Title CPR for Healthcare Providers
Prerequisite
Description

The Basic Life Support (BLS) for Healthcare Providers Course is designed to provide healthcare professionals the ability to recognize several life-threatening emergencies, provide CPR, use an AED, and relieve choking in a safe, timely and effective manner.  This American Heart Association course will teach pharmacy technicians the skills to perform CPR, as well as other lifesaving skills, in a wide variety of in-hospital and out-of-hospital settings.  The course requires students to review the approved text manual prior to the class and complete approximately 4 hours of in class training including skills practice and skills testing.

Course PHAR 2070
Title Technician Clinical Capstone
Prerequisite
Description

This course analyzes distribution procedures to patients in the hospital and patient medication profiles. The course reviews community pharmacies and specific technician duties, including practical on-site experiences in both hospital and community settings. *There is a $55 course fee in addition to tuition.

Course PHAR 1020
Title Intro to Pharmacology I
Prerequisite
Description

This course discusses the nature of drugs, drug absorption and patient variables that affect drug therapy. Drug classification and nomenclature are also discussed. *There is a $35 course fee in addition to tuition.

Course PHAR 1010
Title Intro to Pharmacy Practice
Prerequisite
Description

This course analyzes the fundamentals of pharmacies and health care institutions in the US today. Pharmaceutical and medical terms, career opportunities, safety considerations, dosage forms and quality control are explored. Federal and state pharmacy laws and regulations are reviewed.

Course MA 1100
Title Medical Terminology
Prerequisite
Description Course uses videos, supplemented lecture & covers over 350 medical word roots, suffixes, prefixes. Emphasis placed on pronunciation, spelling, proper usage of medical term. Medical abbreviations are also introduced.
Course PHAR 1060
Title Pharmacology II for Pharmacy Technicians
Prerequisite PHAR 1010,1015, 1020, 1040 with grade of C or better.
Description This course is a continuation of Pharmacology I. This course covers pharmacology concepts, core conditions and drug therapies frequently encountered by a technician in outpatient and inpatient settings.
Course PHAR 1065
Title Pharmacology III/Over the Counter Drugs
Prerequisite
Description This course discusses over-the-counter medications/products with emphasis on knowledge required for making appropriate recommendations for selection and use of these products by consumers.
Course PHAR 1050
Title Pharmacy Computers
Prerequisite
Description This course stresses practical applications of the concepts learned in PHAR 1010. Students access hands-on experience with a computerized system for dispensing prescriptions and preparing third party pay documents. Details to work with prescription charges, billing processes and claim adjudication will be covered. Management of cash drawer creation, reconciliation, counting change will be demonstrated.
Course PHAR 1055
Title Pharmacy Computers Application
Prerequisite Pre-requisite(s) Admission to Pharmacy Technician cohort - Co-requisite(s) PHAR 1030, PHAR 1035, PHAR 1050, PHAR 1045
Description

Student will process prescriptions using the McKesson Enterprise software system in the pharmacy computer lab. Details concerning use of the software will be covered in PHAR 1050 in preparation for the hands-on computer lab.  In addition to prescription processing students will learn a practical, focused overview of medical insurance and billing of prescriptions in the community pharmacy setting.  

* There is a $50.00 course fee in addition to tuition.

Course PHAR 1035
Title Pharmacy Pass -Off Lab
Prerequisite Pre-requisite(s) Admission to Pharmacy Technician cohort - Co-requisite(s) PHAR 1030, PHAR 1055, PHAR 1050, PHAR 1045
Description Course passes off individual students in the appropriate demonstrate of sterile compounding tasks learned in PHAR 1030.  Course authenticates mastery of aseptic technique and skills needed to prepare sterile compounded products based on current USP Chapter 797 requirements.  Aseptic garbing and hand washing, hood cleaning, large and small volume parenteral preparation and ampule preparation are demonstrated.
Course PHAR 1015
Title Pharmacy Skills Lab
Prerequisite Acceptance into the Pharmacy Technician training program.
Description This course introduces critical tasks and skills required of pharmacy technicians in the hospital, retail, institutional and community settings. * There is a $50 course fee in addition to tuition.
Course PHAR 2980
Title Comprehensive Review/Special Topics
Prerequisite
Description This course is a comprehensive review of all community and hospital pharmacy technician curriculum in preparation for the national pharmacy technician certification examination. Course will allow new medication topics to be covered as they emerge, drawing on clinical instructors with field expertise in these areas.

FAQs

A Pharmacy Technician is a person who, under the supervision of a licensed pharmacist, assists in various activities of a pharmacy.

Typical duties include:

  • Maintaining patient records
  • Mixing drugs with parental fluids
  • Maintaining inventories of supplies
  • Responding to questions and requests
  • Packaging and labeling medication doses
  • Filing and distributing routine orders for stock supplies

For a more comprehensive description, visit O*NET OnLine.

A Pharmacy Technician typically works in hospitals, clinics, home health care operations, retail, and other settings.

The salary range typically starts at approximately $14.50 to $18/hour along the Wasatch Front. Visit these links for more detailed information:

The job demand at this time is quite good. There is a need for technicians wherever pharmacists work. Visit these links for official projections:

The tuition cost per credit hour will change based on a student's residency status, and on the total number of hours taken in a semester.
The amounts below reflect Utah State resident rates for Summer 2017-2018, and include program fees. * Tuition and fees subject to change without notice.
Check for the current tuition rates.

Semester Credits Tuition & Fees
1st 12

$2006.50

this does include the cost of MA 1100

2nd 6 $1008.00
3rd 12 $2101.50
Total $5116.00
No prerequesite courses; Math course within the last two years or Accuplacer math testing, proficiency in reading, writing and understanding English.

Yes. Additional expenses include, but are not limited to:

  • Enrollment fees
  • Books
  • Background checks
  • National testing
  • DOPL trainee application fee
  • DOPL licensure application fee
Currently the Pharmacy Technician Program is not eligible for traditional federal financial aid such as student loans or Pell grants.  There may be other agencies, such as Vocational Rehab or Workforce Services, who may provide financial assistance.  You may contact them directly to determine what is available.
No. Completed applications are accepted on a first-come first-serve basis until a cohort is full.
A new cohort of 30 students begins each spring and fall semester.
This is a one-year program consisting of three consecutive semesters totally 30 credit hours.
MA 1100 and PHAR 1010 have offerings online.

Daytime cohorts meet 7 a.m. - 5 p.m., usually one day a week, starting Spring semesters. 

Evening cohorts meet 5:00 - 9:30 p.m.. 3-4 evenings per week, starting Fall semesters. 

See Schedule below for credit/class breadown. 

Utah state law requires 180 hours of on-the-job training in a pharmacy. The program places students in an externship position with a local pharmacy to start and complete during the third semester.

Students are responsible for scheduling externship hours directly with the pharmacy assigned.

No. All classes must be taken in order and the program completed on-time.

The requirements for obtaining a certificate may change without notice, but currently include:

  • Receive a grade of C or better in each class
  • Submit to and pass random drug screening
  • Comply with any DOPL requirements in a timely manner
  • Complete an exit survey
  • Make final payments to the school
  • Complete all requested paperwork

Not through this program. The rules regarding licensure are set by DOPL. SLCC can only offer the program as prescribed. No exceptions.

All questions about special circumstances should be directed to DOPL.

No. Securing employment is the responsibility of the student. However, the school has great services to help with job placement, including:

  • Maintaining jobs lists
  • Resume reviews
  • Mock interviews

Visit the Office of Career Services for more information or call (801) 957-4606.

The refund policy follows the College's Academic Calendar.

Schedule

MA 1100 - Medical Terminology (3 credit hours)

PHAR 1010 - Intro to Pharmacy Practice (2 credit hours)

PHAR 1015 - Pharmacy Skills Lab (2 credit hours)

PHAR 1020 - Pharmacology I (3 credit hours)

PHAR 1040 - Calculations and Law in Pharmacy Practice (2 credit hours)

Total Credit Hours (12)


PHAR 1030 - Sterile and Non Sterile Compounding (2 credit hours)

PHAR 1035 - Pharmacy Sterile Compounding Pass-Off Laboratory (1 credit hour)

PHAR 1045 - Communication for Pharmacy Technicians (3 credit hours)

PHAR 1050 - Pharmacy Computers (2 credit hours)

PHAR 1055 - Pharmacy Computers Application (1 credit hour)

PHAR 1060 - Pharmacology II (3 credit hours)

Total Credit Hours (12)


PHAR 1065 - Pharmacology III OTC (2 credit hours)

PHAR 2070 - Capstone Externship (2 credit hours)

PHAR 2980 - Test Preparation (2 credit hours)

Total Credit Hours (6)


* Schedule subject to change without notice

Registration Info

The requirements to begin the Pharmacy Tech program are minimal and not all of them need to be completed before submitting an application.


Admissions: complete prior to applying.

If you have not applied to SLCC within the past 3 years, the first steps are to enroll as a student. Students who have been absent from the school for more than one year (three consecutive terms) please complete the 1-3 Years Absent Admission Update.


Application: complete when applying.

Submitting the application will reserve a place in the next available cohort, but before it can be accepted all requirements must be met. To retain the reservation the remaining items should be done in a timely manner. Applications expire after one year. We ask that you reapply if you have not been admitted to the program within the year.


Math: complete prior to starting.

Prior to beginning the program (within a two year window) a student must complete MATH 0900, or a higher course, with a C grade or better.
Applications may be accepted on a preliminary basis when applicants are registered into a qualifying course. The class must be completed prior starting the program.

OR

Within one year of beginning the program, a student must have taken the Accuplacer placement test, placing above MATH 0900 or higher.
ACT and SAT scores can be accepted for the placement test. These must be submitted to Enrollment Services as Student Testing Services directs.


Medical Terminology: complete prior to beginning or during first semester.

  • MA 1100 (a course in the Medical Assistant program) must be completed with a C grade or better. This should be completed prior to starting the program. When necessary, it may be taken concurrently with the first semester.
  • Applications may be accepted on a preliminary basis when applicants are registered into a qualifying course.
  • Qualifying Medical Terminology classes don't expire.

BLS CPR 2 year Certification: ** training will be arranged.

  • Applicants who have been accepted into the program will be required to complete the American Heart Association's Basic Life Support for healthcare providers CPR training. A time will be arranged for new students to take this CPR class before the start of their first semester.
  • Students will be responsible to pay the additional cost of this training.
  • Existing certifications will only be accepted as long as they do not expire for the duration of the Pharmacy Technician Training program (1 year).

Transcripts (Optional): optional

Math and Medical Terminology credit can be accepted from other colleges and universities. An official transcript must be sent to our office. Final determination will be made by the program manager.

Employers and Preceptors

Preceptors

The Pharmacy Technician program at SLCC is always looking for preceptors who can work with our students to complete the training required by the Utah Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing (DOPL). Willing pharmacies should contact the program manager Kristie Fitzgerald at:

Kristie Fitzgerald
Program Manager
Jordan Campus HTC 115J
801-957-2612
kristie.fitzgerald@slcc.edu

Employers

Salt Lake Community College has a resource for posting employment opportunities for our graduates. Upon completion of our Pharmacy Tech program, our students are registered with the Office of Career Services. After graduation each student will be sent related job postings for up to one year. To have your Pharmacy Technician employment opportunitiy sent to our graduates contact Jennifer Benally, Career & Student Employment Advisor  can be reached at 801-957-6242 or 801-957-3401.