Medical Healthcare

A Guide to Pennsylvania On-The-Job Pharmacy Technician Training

Medical - HealthcareOctober 11, 2017

If you live in Pennsylvania and are interested in learning how to become a pharmacy tech, you’ll want to continue reading to find out about Pennsylvania’s requirements for this field. 

Pennsylvania Pharmacy Tech Training Programs 

The state of Pennsylvania does not regulate pharmacy technicians, nor does it mandate a pharmacy technician certification or require licensure for employment. However, on-the-job training under the direct supervision of a licensed pharmacist in a pharmacy is required.

When you get hired as a pharmacy tech, a supervising pharmacist will oversee the initial and ongoing training. By law, the supervising pharmacist will create and maintain a written protocol for each pharmacy technician employed in the pharmacy. The protocol specifies each duty the pharmacy technician may perform. 
In order to begin training as a pharmacy tech, you should meet at least the following criteria:

Be at least 18 years old
Have a high school diploma or a GED
Pass a criminal background check
Have completed a pharmacy technician program accredited by the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists

Consider Getting Certified


Although certification is not required to be a pharmacy tech in Pennsylvania, you’ll want to keep in mind that national certification can significantly help you not only obtain a job, but advance in your career. 

Certification provides recognition of your knowledge and skills, making you more marketable in general - enabling you to find a job more quickly - and possibly opening the door to career opportunities with large chain pharmacies or pharmaceutical corporations. Additionally, it is best to be prepared since Pennsylvania could decide to increase their regulations for pharmacy technicians in the future. 
While the state of Pennsylvania does not have any Continuing Education (CE) requirements, if you decide to pursue national certification, you will need to earn 20 units of CE every two years to maintain your certification. 

Additional Tips

If you can find a job as a pharmacy tech in Pennsylvania without any certifications, it is important to ask a lot of questions and pay very close attention to any training provided to learn as much as you can. 
Since there isn’t much guidance on how to become a pharmacy tech in Pennsylvania, joining the Pennsylvania Pharmacists Association could provide additional resources, references, and contacts to help as you research and embark on this career path.

Certification and resource information can be found here.