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Career and Education Opportunities for Pharmacist Technicians in Irvine, California

There are many career and education opportunities for pharmacist technicians in the Irvine, California area. About 23,300 people are currently employed as pharmacist technicians in California. By 2016, this is expected to grow 36% to about 31,700 people employed. This is better than the national trend for pharmacist technicians, which sees this job pool growing by about 30.6% over the next eight years. In general, pharmacist technicians prepare medications under the direction of a pharmacist.

The income of a pharmacist technician is about $17 hourly or $35,830 annually on average in California. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $13 per hour or $27,710 yearly on average. Compared with people working in the overall category of Pharmacy, people working as pharmacist technicians in California earn less. They earn less than people working in the overall category of Pharmacy nationally. People working as pharmacist technicians can fill a number of jobs, such as: certified pharmacy technician , pharmacy laboratory technician, and drug coordinator.

There are 112 schools of higher education in the Irvine area, including nine within twenty-five miles of Irvine where you can get a degree to start your career as a pharmacist technician. Given that the most common education level for pharmacist technicians is a post-secondary certificate, you can expect to spend a short time training to become a pharmacist technician if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Pharmacist Technician

Pharmacist Technician video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, pharmacist technicians prepare medications under the direction of a pharmacist. They also may measure, mix, and record amounts and dosages of medications.

Pharmacist technicians answer telephones, responding to questions or requests. They also receive and store incoming supplies, verify quantities against invoices, check for outdated medications in current inventory, and inform supervisors of stock needs and shortages. Equally important, pharmacist technicians have to maintain proper storage and security conditions for drugs. They are often called upon to assist customers by answering simple questions, locating items or referring them to the pharmacist for medication data. They are expected to prepack bulk medicines, fill bottles with prescribed medications, and type and affix labels. Finally, pharmacist technicians order and count stock of medications and supplies, and enter inventory data into computer.

Every day, pharmacist technicians are expected to be able to see details at a very fine level of focus. It is also important that they listen to and understand others in meetings.

It is important for pharmacist technicians to price and file prescriptions that have been filled. They are often called upon to receive written prescription or refill requests and verify that data is complete and accurate. They also operate cash registers to take payment from customers. They are sometimes expected to clean, and help maintain, apparatus and work areas, and sterilize glassware in line with prescribed methods. Somewhat less frequently, pharmacist technicians are also expected to assist customers by answering simple questions, locating items or referring them to the pharmacist for medication data.

Pharmacist technicians sometimes are asked to deliver medications and pharmaceutical supplies to patients, nursing stations or surgery. They also have to be able to price stock and mark items for sale and restock intravenous (IV) supplies and add measured drugs or nutrients to IV solutions under sterile conditions to ready IV packs for various uses such as chemotherapy medication. And finally, they sometimes have to receive and store incoming supplies, verify quantities against invoices, check for outdated medications in current inventory, and inform supervisors of stock needs and shortages.

Like many other jobs, pharmacist technicians must be thorough and dependable and have exceptional integrity.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Irvine include:

  • Cardiac Technician. Conduct tests on pulmonary or cardiovascular systems of patients for diagnostic purposes. May conduct or assist in electrocardiograms, cardiac catheterizations, pulmonary-functions, lung capacity, and similar tests.
  • Health Information Systems Technician. Compile, process, and maintain medical records of hospital and clinic patients in a manner consistent with medical, administrative, and regulatory requirements of the health care system. Process, maintain, and report patient information for health requirements and standards.
  • Licensed Dispensing Optician. Design, measure, and adapt lenses and frames for client according to written optical prescription or specification. Assist client with selecting frames. Measure customer for size of eyeglasses and coordinate frames with facial and eye measurements and optical prescription. Prepare work order for optical laboratory containing instructions for grinding and mounting lenses in frames. Verify exactness of finished lens spectacles. Adjust frame and lens position to fit client. May shape or reshape frames.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Pharmacist Technician Training

United Education Institute-Huntington Park Campus - Huntington Park, CA

United Education Institute-Huntington Park Campus, 6055 Pacific Blvd., Huntington Park, CA 90255. United Education Institute-Huntington Park Campus is a small school located in Huntington Park, California. It is a private for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs. It has 4,467 students and an admission rate of 92%. United Education Institute-Huntington Park Campus has a less than one year program in Pharmacy Technician/Assistant which graduated 250 students in 2008.

American University of Health Sciences - Long Beach, CA

American University of Health Sciences, 3501 Atlantic Ave., Long Beach, CA 90807. American University of Health Sciences is a small university located in Long Beach, California. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 74 students. American University of Health Sciences has a one to two year program in Pharmacy Technician/Assistant which graduated forty students in 2008.

Intercoast Colleges - Carson, CA

Intercoast Colleges, One Civic Plaza-Ste 110, Carson, CA 90745. Intercoast Colleges is a small college located in Carson, California. It is a private for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs and has 143 students. Intercoast Colleges has a one to two year program in Pharmacy Technician/Assistant which graduated seventeen students in 2008.

Everest College-Anaheim - Anaheim, CA

Everest College-Anaheim, 511 North Brookhurst St., Suite 300, Anaheim, CA 92801-5229. Everest College-Anaheim is a small college located in Anaheim, California. It is a private for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs. It has 469 students and an admission rate of 44%. Everest College-Anaheim has a less than one year program in Pharmacy Technician/Assistant which graduated forty-four students in 2008.

Cerritos College - Norwalk, CA

Cerritos College, 11110 Alondra Blvd, Norwalk, CA 90650-6298. Cerritos College is a large college located in Norwalk, California. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 22,228 students. Cerritos College has one to two year, associate's degree, and two to four year programs in Pharmacy Technician/Assistant which graduated eleven, seven, and zero students respectively in 2008.

Santa Ana College - Santa Ana, CA

Santa Ana College, 1530 W. 17th Street, Santa Ana, CA 92706-3398. Santa Ana College is a large college located in Santa Ana, California. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 26,464 students. Santa Ana College has less than one year, associate's degree, and two to four year programs in Pharmacy Technician/Assistant which graduated twenty-seven, three, and zero students respectively in 2008.

American Career College - Anaheim, CA

American Career College, 1200 N. Magnolia Ave., Anaheim, CA 92801-0000. American Career College is a small college located in Anaheim, California. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs. It has 1,401 students and an admission rate of 80%. American Career College has a less than one year program in Pharmacy Technician/Assistant which graduated 232 students in 2008.

Career Colleges of America - South Gate, CA

Career Colleges of America, 5612 E Imperial Hwy, South Gate, CA 90280. Career Colleges of America is a small college located in South Gate, California. It is a private for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs and has 1,087 students. Career Colleges of America has a less than one year program in Pharmacy Technician/Assistant which graduated ten students in 2008.

Charles Drew University of Medicine and Science - Los Angeles, CA

Charles Drew University of Medicine and Science, 1731 E 120th St, Los Angeles, CA 90059. Charles Drew University of Medicine and Science is a small university located in Los Angeles, California. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 249 students. Charles Drew University of Medicine and Science has an associate's degree program in Pharmacy Technician/Assistant.

CERTIFICATIONS

Certified Pharmacy Technician: The goal of PTCB's certification program is to enable pharmacy technicians to work more effectively with pharmacists to offer greater patient care and service.

For more information, see the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board website.

LICENSES

Pharmacy Technician

Licensing agency: Department of Consumer Affairs
Address: Board of Pharmacy, 400 R Street, Suite 4070, Sacramento, CA 95814

Phone: (916) 445-5014
Website: Department of Consumer Affairs Board of Pharmacy

LOCATION INFORMATION: Irvine, California

Irvine, California
Irvine, California photo by SoCal L.A.

Irvine is situated in Orange County, California. It has a population of over 207,500, which has grown by 45.0% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Irvine, 136, is far greater than the national average. New single-family homes in Irvine are valued at $283,000 on average, which is below the state average. In 2008, one hundred twenty-five new homes were built in Irvine, down from two hundred twenty-nine the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Irvine are educational services, professional, scientific, and technical services, and health care. For men, it is professional, scientific, and technical services, educational services, and computer and electronic products. The average travel time to work is about 23 minutes. More than 58.4% of Irvine residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 24.2%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Irvine is 7.3%, which is less than California's average of 12.3%.

The percentage of Irvine residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 44.8%, is less than the national average but more than the state average. The most common religious groups are the Catholic Church, the LDS (Mormon) Church and the Charismatic Churches Independent.

Irvine is home to the International Raceway and the Heritage Park Library as well as Heritage Park and Alderwood Park. Shopping centers in the area include Heritage Plaza Shopping Center, Alton Square Shopping Center and Arbor Village Shopping Center. Visitors to Irvine can choose from Atrium Hotel At Orange County Airport and Amerilodge Electronics for temporary stays in the area.