What Are the Different Types of Pharmacy Technician Prerequisites?

Lori Kilchermann

A pharmacy technician is often required to have training, education and licensing to be employed in this specialized area of the health care field. Before embarking on a course of study, a candidate is typically required to meet a number of pharmacy technician prerequisites. Skills commonly used on the job include grammar, mathematics and data entry. Other pharmacy technician prerequisites include having a clean criminal background, mastering some basic educational requirements and maintaining eligibility for government registration or licensing, if required. Many two-year college programs require pharmacy technician candidates to complete some general courses in health care, medical terminology and basic computer skills before being admitted into the program.

Pills from a pharmacy.
Pills from a pharmacy.

Having a strong grasp of grammar, punctuation and spelling are some of the basic pharmacy technician prerequisites often required of students. A solid spoken and written command of the local native language where the student is studying or will be employed is another requirement for entry into a pharmacy technician program. In addition, a variety of basic computer skills are also required, including keyboarding, data entry and the mastery of common word-processing software programs. Having earned either a high school diploma or a high school equivalency certificate is also one of the pharmacy technician prerequisites. Certain coursework, such as high school-level mathematics, must also have been mastered.

A pharmacy technician working.
A pharmacy technician working.

Local government agencies in countries throughout the world often enforce regulations regarding the licensing and registration qualifications of people who work in the medical field. In most locations, a series of minimum regulations are typically designated for pharmacy technicians, such as age, education and training. Students embarking on an educational path to become a pharmacy technician are often required to meet certain character requirements as well, such as not having a history of criminal or psychological behavior. Many licensing boards and employers will conduct mandatory background investigations on potential pharmacy technicians before issuing licenses or hiring candidates to fill positions.

Many colleges offering associate's degree programs have pharmacy technician prerequisites that students must complete before officially entering the program. Prerequisite classes typically cover some health care topics, such as basic life support, the health care industry and blood-borne pathogens. Students may also be required to learn to use an automated external defibrillator (AED). They also learn about the basic functions and structure of the human body, including tissue and cellular functions. Required studies also cover the various systems within the body, such as the lymphatic, nervous and respiratory systems.

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