HOW TO BECOME A PHARMACY TECHNICIAN IN TEXAS
Pharmacy technicians work under licensed pharmacists and play a supportive role in helping patients get their needed medications. As a tech in a pharmacy, you will be responsible for communicating with patients, taking inventory, preparing prescriptions for patients, cashing out customers, and answering phones by pharmacy practice.
Becoming a pharmacy tech in Texas does not require extensiveautom education or a big cost. It’s fairly easy to get started, but you do have to pass an exam and be registered with the state. [Leer en español]
REQUIREMENTS TO WORK AS A PHARMACY TECHNICIAN IN TEXAS
To start working as a pharmacy tech in the state you must be registered through the Texas State Board of Pharmacy (TSBP). The TSBP registers both technician trainees and technicians. You must go through the trainee license process first, which includes on-the-job training under a pharmacist before you can be registered as a technician.
You must also pass a national exam before your registration through the TSPB will be approved. The two acceptable exam options are the Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam, offered through the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB), and the Exam for the Certification of Pharmacy Technicians through the National Healthcareer Association (NHA).
You do not need to pass one of these exams until you have completed your trainee work. You can also choose to take an exam during the training period. When registering, you must provide a fee and your fingerprints for a background check.
PHARMACY TECHNICIAN PROGRAMS
In Texas, you do not need to complete a post-secondary program to become a pharmacy technician. However, many choose to study this career before beginning work as a pharmacy technician trainee to have important background information.
To search pharmacy technician programs, The TSBP encourages you to choose taught pharmacy technician programs that are accredited by the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists. Some accredited programs in Texas include:
Northwest Vista College, San Antonio
This branch of the Alamo Colleges District offers a level one certificate in pharmacy technology. The program includes 31 credit hours of coursework, which can be completed over three semesters. After completing semester one, you must apply and interview to continue the program. Request enrollment information on the school website.
Austin Community College, Austin, and Round Rock
ACC offers a certificate and an associate’s degree program in pharmacy technology. The certificate program currently costs about $3,700 for in-district students, while the degree program costs around $7,100. The certification rate for graduates is 100 percent.
Amarillo College, Amarillo
This is the only accredited pharmacy tech program in the panhandle region of Texas. The certificate program includes 33 credits of courses that can be completed in two or three semesters.
Pima Medical Institute, Houston, El Paso, San Antonio
Pima offers a certificate program in three Texas locations. There are 35.5 credits of classes, including a five-credit externship working in a real pharmacy.
Penn Foster Career School
Penn Foster offers an affordable, ASHP Accredited online Pharmacy Technician training program. More information.
Although you do not need to complete an educational program to become a registered pharmacy tech, Texas does require that once working, you complete continuing education credits. You must complete 20 hours in three years to renew your registration.
PHARMACY TECHNICIAN REGISTRATION AND CERTIFICATION IN TEXAS
To register as a pharmacy technician in Texas you do need to become a certified pharmacy technician through one of the two main national organizations that offer exams: the pharmacy technician certification board or the NHA. The costs for taking the exams are $129 for the PTCB and $117 for the NHA. Once you have passed an exam, you will be considered a certified pharmacy technician and you can then register through the TSBP.
SALARY AND CAREER OUTLOOK IN TEXAS
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the average pharmacy technician earns $36,740 per year or $17.66 per hour across the U.S. In Texas, the average is higher at $36,900 per year and $17.74 per hour. If you work up to a leadership role, have more education, or have more years of experience, you may earn more. The top earners in the state in this career make more than $46,600 per year.
Across all states, the growth in pharmacy technology careers is strong. From 2020 to 2030, the number of jobs is expected to grow by 5 percent. In Texas, demand is even greater with a growth of 24 percent and an estimated 3,660 new pharmacy tech jobs being created.
WHERE TO WORK AS A PHARMACY TECHNICIAN IN TEXAS
As a pharmacy technician, you will work in a pharmacy, which may be in drug stores, grocery stores, independent and hospital settings, or general merchandise stores. Other locations of pharmacies that need pharmacy technicians are hospitals, nursing homes, and other types of residential health centers.
Pharmacies are found throughout the state from the biggest cities to rural areas, and all of these need good pharmacy technicians. You’ll find most job opportunities in larger population areas, including Houston, San Antonio, Dallas, Austin, and El Paso.
What are the best pharmacy technician schools in Texas?
- Remington College, Dallas, Fort Worth, Houston, Webster
- CCI Training Center, Arlington
- Houston Community College, Houston
- Pima Medical Institute, Houston and El Paso
- National American University, Austin
- El Paso Community College, El Paso
How do you become a pharmacy technician in Texas?
- You must be at least 18 years old
- You must have a high school diploma or GED
- Pass a criminal record check
- Pass the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB) or the Exam for the Certification of Pharmacy Technicians through the National Healthcareer Association (NHA)
- Register through the Texas State Board of Pharmacy (TSBP)
How much do pharmacy technicians make in Texas?
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, pharmacy technicians in the state of Texas made an average of $36,900 per year in 2020. Entry-level pharm techs earned around $29,080 and some experienced professionals earned as much as $47,150.
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