BECOMING A PHARMACY TECHNICIAN IN NEVADA
A pharmacy technician is technically an assistant to the pharmacist. Their role includes communication with patients regarding their prescriptions and their refills, as well as general management of the med room, including counting pills and proper labeling.
Pharmacy technicians can also work with insurance companies, billing and providing information to patients. For a more patient-centered role, pharmacy technicians can also work in assisted living facilities and hospitals. [Leer en español]
CERTIFIED PHARMACY TECHNICIAN
Pharmacy technicians are regulated in Nevada, though certification is not required by the Nevada State Board of Pharmacy (NSBP). However, it’s important to remember that, in Nevada, an individual is required to possess this certification before looking for a job. The exam for certification is administered by the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB).
The most basic requirements to begin training include being at least 18 years old with a high school diploma or GED equivalent, no felonies or misdemeanors, and no history of convictions for drug use.
PHARMACY TECHNICIAN PROGRAMS IN NEVADA
While certification isn’t required by NSBP, individuals with professional training will have the advantage of searching for a position. In addition, having been accepted by the Board of Pharmacy for fulfilling the minimum requirements, you may choose to obtain this training through a pharmacy in Nevada.
According to the Pharmacy Technician Guide of Nevada, the following are two of the best pharmacy technician training schools that offer pharmacy technician training programs that interested candidates can consider:
The College of Southern Nevada
Located in Clark County, the College of Southern Nevada’s pharmacy technician training program prepares the student to work in a hospital setting, in a retail pharmacy, in pharmaceutical manufacturing, or in-home IV therapy. The pharmacy tech training takes one year to complete and leads to a Certificate of Achievement. Classes are offered online and in the classroom, as well as the option of directed work experience.
Northwest Career College, Las Vegas
Northwest offers graduation in nine months. It has exceptional PTCB certification classes. The student can become a nationally certified pharmacy technician in less than a year. The pharmacy technician program features hands-on training, instruction, flexible class schedules, and a committed job placement team.
Penn Foster Career School
Penn Foster offers an affordable, ASHP Accredited online Pharmacy Technician training program. More information.
Students must take the PTCB exam and procure a license from the Nevada State Board of Pharmacy. Students must also complete 1500 hours of training as a registered pharmacy technician-in-training.
PHARMACY TECHNICIAN CERTIFICATION EXAM
The Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam (PTCE) is a computer-based exam that can be taken at any of the more than 200 Pearson VUE test centers located throughout the United States. The PTCE is not administered by the NSBP.
The PTCE is divided into two parts, the General Knowledge section, and the Pharmacology section. The General Knowledge section covers topics such as pharmacy calculations, pharmacy law, and ethics. The Pharmacology section covers topics such as drug classification, dosage forms, and side effects.
Candidates must pass both sections of the exam within one year to receive their certification.
PAY SCALE AND JOB GROWTH
According to PayScale, the average starting salary for a pharmacist technician in Nevada is $24,800 per year; however, most employers will have a pay scale with different tiers— five years’ experience, 10 years experience, etc.—with a concomitant increase in salary.
The average hourly starting wage for pharmacy technicians in Nevada is $15.11.
Despite a rather low starting wage, it has been reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics that over the next 10 years, the field of pharmacy technology will be one of the fastest-growing occupations, with a projected 24 percent growth rate.
JOB OPPORTUNITIES FOR PHARMACY TECHNICIANS
While it’s true that many pharmacy technicians will find employment in national drugstore chains such as Walgreens or CVS, there are many other opportunities in Nevada.
For example, The Wellcare Group in Reno is a residential facility that hires pharmacy technicians to document medications for its residents, manage their medications, assist them with refills and track side effects, as well as oversee the cleanliness of the med room. Another example is Rx Relief: Leaders in Temp Staff, which offers pharmacy techs a flexible schedule, choosing assignments the individual enjoys at respected firms, guaranteed hours, competitive pay, and benefits.
This is a career path that requires hard work in the initial stages and potentially long hours; however, in Nevada, the individual will be rewarded with a variety of opportunities and work environments.
What are the best pharmacy technician schools in Nevada?
- Pima Medical Institute, Las Vegas
- College of Southern Nevada, Las Vegas
- Northwest Career College, Las Vegas
- Milan Institute, Las Vegas, and Sparks
- Career College of Northern Nevada, Sparks
How do you become a pharmacy technician in Nevada?
- You must be at least 18 years old
- You must have a high school diploma or GED
- Pass a criminal record check
- Certification is not required by the Nevada State Board of Pharmacy (NSBP)
How much do pharmacy technicians make in Nevada?
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, pharmacy technicians in the state of Nevada made an average of $37,620 per year in 2018. Entry-level pharm techs earned around $26,350 and some experienced professionals earned as much as $51,580.