How to Become a Pharmacy Technician in New York
Pharmacy tech jobs in New York require exceptional attention to detail, organization, and customer service skills.
Those who hope to become pharmacy technicians also need effective training and education to ensure they follow federal guidelines and company policies while performing their duties.
Education & Training
Those wondering how to become a pharmacy tech in New York may be curious about the amount of schooling and experience they need.
- Most small businesses and pharmacy chains require applicants to have a high school diploma or GED.
However, completing a pharmacy tech program at a NY trade school can qualify you for higher-paying pharmacy technician jobs in New York.
Do Pharmacy Technicians Need a Certificate or Degree?
Although New York lacks a specific post-secondary educational requirement for pharmacy technicians, most employers prefer to hire candidates who have a pharmacy tech certificate from an accredited school. Some pharmacies even require and pay for formal courses that supplement their workers’ on-the-job training.
What Courses Will You Take?
Depending on where you enroll, your pharmacy tech program in New York may have different curriculums and course requirements. However, most institutions teach classes on:
- Basic Pharmacology
- Pharmaceutical Terminology
- Drug Classifications
- Medication Calculations
- Anatomy and Physiology
- Healthcare Systems
- Drug Regulation and Control
- Ethics in Pharmacy
Some schools may also teach communication classes revolving around customer service and interaction. Instructors may cover the proper methods for troubleshooting insurance claims as well.
Hands-On Pharmacy Tech Training in New York
Pharmacy techs in NY may also need to participate in internships in order to complete their educational program. Internships usually include anywhere from 80 to 120 hours of training under a licensed pharmacist and involve performing duties like:
- Stocking pharmacy shelves
- Processing and filling prescriptions
- Packaging prescriptions for delivery
- Explaining proper dosages and potential side effects to customers
Throughout the internship, pharmacists must record your work hours to ensure you meet your chosen program’s requirements. After graduation, some students may be able to get a paid position at the same pharmacy where they interned.
How Long is Pharmacy Tech School in NY?
Many pharmacy tech students in New York complete their certificate program in about six months.
If you attend classes part-time, you’re likely to finish in roughly nine months or even a year.
Some students may consider enrolling in a two-year pharmacy tech degree program, especially if they plan to further their healthcare careers and eventually become licensed pharmacists.
How Much Does it Cost?
Tuition costs vary across different pharmacy tech schools in NY. However, most students pay about $2,500 to complete their courses and obtain their certificates. If you work at a pharmacy while pursuing your certificate, your employer may reimburse you for the cost of your program.
New York Pharmacy Tech Requirements
In the state of New York, unlicensed pharmacy technicians may only work in non-medical settings like privately-owned or grocery store pharmacies. Those who work in these settings cannot legally perform or assist with tasks that involve measuring, weighing, compounding, or mixing ingredients for prescription medications.
NYSED Registered Pharmacy Technicians
Meanwhile, only NYSED-registered pharmacy technicians can qualify for jobs in hospital and health-system settings, such as:
- Nursing homes
- Long-term care facilities
- Narcotic addiction rehabilitation centers
- Urgent care facilities
- Home healthcare companies
- Outpatient clinics
- Hospice agencies
To qualify for these pharmacy tech jobs in New York, you must obtain national certification through organizations like:
Those who choose to go through the NHA must take a licensing exam and pass with a particular score. If you pursue PTCB certification, you’ll need to complete the agency’s official training course to receive your license, then complete continuing education classes to keep your certification valid.
Registering Your License
Once you receive your national certification, you must register your license with the New York State Education Department (NYSED). In addition to submitting an application form, pharmacy techs must pay a $175 licensure and first registration fee.
Most employers also require pharmacy techs in NY to pass a criminal background check before they’re eligible for hire. If there is a felony on your record, you may be unable to qualify for specific pharmacy tech jobs in New York. However, some pharmacy owners may be willing to make an exception.
Pharmacy Tech Salary in NY
How Much Can You Make?
While the average pharmacy tech salary in New York State is about $40,396, you might make more or less than that, depending on the region you live in. Check out this list to discover the average annual earnings for pharmacy techs in different areas of New York:
- New York City $42,552
- Long Island $43,763
- Yonkers $25,996
- Albany $36,475
- Syracuse $36,361
- Ithaca $36,332
Over time, employers may offer you performance-based raises and promotions that increase your annual wages. As a result, you may be able to earn closer to $50k per year once you have more experience.
What Do They Do?
Pharmacy techs in NY work under the direct supervision of a licensed pharmacist. Professionals in this role are primarily responsible for helping pharmacists fill prescriptions. Licensed techs retrieve, count, weigh, pour, measure, or even mix medications while preparing each customer’s order. A pharmacy technician must also check each prescription before sending it out to ensure accuracy.
Other duties for New York pharmacy techs include:
- Taking inventory
- Stocking product shelves
- Assisting customers on the sales floor
- Running the cash register
According to reports from the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics, the demand for pharmacy tech jobs in the United States will likely increase by about five percent over the next decade. Aspiring pharmacy techs in NY can take advantage of this growth by obtaining the necessary training and certification to qualify for a high-paying pharmacy job.