Purpose: The Pharmacy Technician program is designed to prepare students to assist and support licensed pharmacists in providing health care and medications to patients. Students will obtain a broad knowledge of pharmacy practice and be skilled in the techniques required to order, stock, and package, prepare, and dispense medications under the supervision of a licensed pharmacist. Program graduates will be eligible to take the Virginia Pharmacy Technician Exam and the National Pharmacy Technician Certification Examination.

Occupational Objectives: Pharmacy technicians work in hospital, retail, home health care, nursing home, and clinic, nuclear medicine, and mail order prescription pharmacies. Pharmacy technicians have been employed with medical insurance, medical computer software, drug manufacturing, drug wholesale, and food processing companies, and as instructors in pharmacy technician programs. Currently, hospital, home health care, and retail pharmacies hire the majority of technicians. Examples of job duties include: computer information entry, preparation of prescription labels, assisting the pharmacists in filling prescriptions, ordering pharmaceutical supplies, customer assistance, reading and interpreting written prescriptions and physicians’ orders, cash register operation, answering telephones and use of other routine equipment such as computer-assisted medication dispensing machines, computer-assisted intravenous preparations and electronic tablet/capsule counting machines in the retail, institutional, or hospital pharmacy. An understanding of state and federal pharmacy and drug laws is required. The curriculum includes learning experiences in class and in the laboratory, as well as clinical, retail, institutional, and hospital pharmacies.

Admission Requirements: Students need to place out of developmental English and MTE 1-4 on the college placement tests. They must have successfully completed any required developmental courses before registering for any of the required HLT courses. Students must meet the general admission requirements established by the college. Upon admission to the program, students must have a clean criminal background check.  Students must also have a negative drug screening completed within the first four weeks of the admitted semester along with documentation of the required immunizations in order to be in the pharmacy technician clinical experiences. Any charges or costs for drug screening, criminal checks, and immunizations will be the responsibility of the students. The estimated cost of these items is $140.00.  Students who need to acquire additional immunizations will be responsible for those costs.

The program’s courses are scheduled so that students will complete the program in one semester. Prospective students are advised to complete HLT 143 Medical Terminology prior to starting HLT 261, Basic Pharmacy I.

Pharmacy Technician Curriculum:

Program Requirements   Credits
HLT 143 Medical Terminology I 3
HLT 250* General Pharmacology 3
HLT 261* Basic Pharmacy I 3
HLT 262* Basic Pharmacy I Lab 1
HLT 263* Basic Pharmacy II 3
HLT 290* Internship for Clinical Practice 4
Total Minimum Credits   17

*These are specific classes and sections for the pharmacy technician students.