Becoming a Pharmacy Technician in Hawaii
Pharmacy technicians are healthcare professionals who perform pharmacy-related duties under the watchful eye of a licensed pharmacist. Pharmacy technicians are also known as pharmacy techs or compound technicians. Pharmacy technician tasks include putting prescription and patient information in the computer, helping count out pills and mixing medications and printing prescription labels. They might also hold administrative duties such as answering phones, taking call-ins from doctors’ offices and handling insurance information. If you want to become a pharmacy technician, now is the time to take steps to become one, as the job field is experiencing steady growth. This job is not nationally regulated, but it is regulated on a state level, and requirements will vary by state.
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Hawaii Pharmacy Technician Requirements
Most states require that pharmacy technicians become licensed by registering in the state in which they will be working. However, to work as a pharmacy technician in Hawaii, you do not have to register. The Department of Commerce & Consumer Affairs is responsible for licensing in the state, and while the job of a pharmacist is regulated, that of a pharmacy technician is not.
There are a few requirements that you should meet to work in the state. You need to be at least 18 years old and have a diploma showing that you are a high school graduate or the equivalent of a diploma. You must pass a background check. Completing a pharmacy technology educational program that has been accredited by the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) is also recommended, since licensure is not required in the state.
Hawaii Pharmacy Technician Educational Programs
Since there are no set requirements to work as a pharmacy tech in the state, consider completing a pharmacy technology training program. Prior training will set you apart from your peers and give you more opportunities for career advancement.
Pharmacy tech training program options are rather limited in Hawaii. If you live in or near Honolulu, you have the following programs to choose from:
- Hawaii Medical College. This program
takes approximately 15 months to complete, and courses can be taken on campus
or online. Students will learn pharmacology terminology, prescription
interactions and other medical fundamentals needed to work in a pharmacy. They
will also complete clinical practice in a setting similar to the one in which
they will work.
University of Hawaii Kapiolani Community College. This pharmacy tech program is a non-credit program that consists of 256 course hours. Students will learn how to assist patients, fill prescriptions, inventory control and more. Students will spend approximately two and a half months in class with an externship immediately following. Students may have to take a Math and English class before they can be admitted to this program. Graduates will receive a certificate of competence and be prepared to take the Pharmacy Technician Certification Examination (PTCE).
If neither of these programs is convenient for you, consider the following online program:
- Penn Foster Career College. Penn Foster offers a pharmacy technician training program that can be taken entirely online. Depending on the pace at which you complete the courses, the whole program can be completed in as little as nine months. Penn Foster will also pay for you to take the PTCE upon completion of their program. More information.
Certification Requirements in Hawaii
National certification in Hawaii is optional, not mandatory for pharmacy technicians. However, since the profession is not regulated in the state, earning certification can provide you with benefits such as more job choices and a higher salary. If certification is something you plan to do, you can get that through the
Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB). Once you pass the PTCE, which costs $129, you will officially be a Certified Pharmacy Technician (CPhT).
Career and Salary Expectations in Hawaii
The Projections Managing Partnership reports that from 2016 and 2026, pharmacy technician jobs will see a 12 percent increase nationally. The state of Hawaii is predicted to see a 12.6 percent increase in this field during this time, with more than 200 more jobs becoming available.
Pharmacy technicians in Hawaii are well paid. The latest data provided by the Bureau of Labor Statistics show that they earn an average of $18.61 an hour, or $38,720 annually. If you are certified or have completed an educational program, you could potentially make as much as $49,910 annually.
Working as a Pharmacy Technician in Hawaii
Pharmacy techs may find work in the following venues: retail pharmacies, hospitals, independent drugstores, long-term care centers, pharmaceutical manufacturers, insurance companies or medical clinics. As a pharmacy technician, you will usually spend long periods of time on your feet, and you may have to lift heavy boxes occasionally. Most pharmacy technicians are employed full-time. The most common places to work in this field in Hawaii are Hilo, Honolulu and Kailua.
All School Listings
1221 Kapiolani Boulevard, Honolulu, Hawaii 96814-3518Pharmacy Technician – Certificate Program
Hawaii Medical College’s Certificate Pharmacy Technician program is imparted at their campus in the city of Honolulu. This private, for-profit college has round 426 students in total, with the majority of students on 2-year programs. Hawaii Medical College has institutional accreditation from the Accrediting Council for Continuing Education and Training.* The retention rate of full-time students at this college is over 80%. The cost of tuition is, as a rough guide, in the order of $14,425 yearly, while books and supplies may cost about $2,423, although this will depend on the program.
* Accredition status and tuition fees are correct at the time of last update and are sourced from the National Center for Education Statistics (http://nces.ed.gov/). Confirm with college or university prior to application.