The Critical Role of Pharmacy Technicians in Ensuring Medication Safety and Patient Care

After enrolling in a pharmacy technician program, pharmacy technicians play essential roles within the healthcare industry. These professionals work in collaboration with pharmacists to ensure the delivery of safe and effective medication therapy to their patients.

Some of the primary tasks that pharmacy technicians undertake within healthcare settings include preparing new drug prescriptions, fulfilling patient refill requests, packaging and labeling medication, medication administration, insurance claims processing,  inventory tracking, and repackaging bulk medications.

There are several associated benefits of becoming a pharmacy technician, such as:

  • Short training time. You can become a qualified pharmacist technician within as little as eight months.
  • Great job outlook. The need for more pharmacist technicians is growing. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, pharmacist technician job openings will have increased by 4% in 2030.
  • Flexible work schedules. This allows professionals to plan their life events effectively.
  • Potential for career advancement. Upward mobility opportunities include pharmacy department manager, pharmacy manager, and pharmacy sales representative roles.

Prospective students can begin their journey towards becoming pharmacist technicians by enrolling in the 8-Month* Pharmacy Technician Program at Northwest Suburban College (NWSC). We have classes that start monthly. Our focus on small class sizes ensures that students receive individualized attention, better instructor feedback, and enhanced participation levels.

The Importance of Medication Safety

Medical errors and unsafe medication administration can cause considerable harm to patients within the American healthcare system and around the world. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the annual costs related to medication errors are estimated at 42 billion USD. These errors are primarily associated with staff shortages, poor environmental conditions, and fatigue and can lead to patient harm, disability, or death.

It is vital to note that medication errors and unsafe medication administration can occur at any stage of medication use. Pharmacy technicians play a key role in ensuring medication safety because these professionals are often the last point of contact with patients during medication prescription and administration.

Some of the various tasks that pharmacy technicians perform in terms of enhancing medication safety include:

  • Ensuring that patient names are spelled out correctly.
  • Verifying the patient’s date of birth before medication administration.
  • Ensuring patients understand doctors’ directions and the prescribed medication quantity before drug issuance.
  • Ensuring that patients know the names of the doctors that they work with.
  • Ensuring that patients understand how to take the medication and why it has been prescribed to them.

The Role of Pharmacy Technicians in Patient Care

Pharmacy technicians also have a role in ensuring accurate medication dispensation and administration. When working with pharmacists, pharmacy technicians can ensure that pharmacists have access to accurate patient medication histories. This role helps reduce the number and severity of medication discrepancies that occur during patient care.

Pharmacy technicians also have a role in pharmacovigilance. By ensuring that they identify and report any adverse drug reactions, they enhance the health and safety of their patients, advance the cost-effective use of medication, and improve overall clinical outcomes.

Another fundamental role that pharmacy technicians play relates to communicating with patients and healthcare providers to increase the likelihood of effective medication use. Skillful communication helps these professionals build rapport with other stakeholders and enables them to solicit crucial health information.

Training and Certification Required for Pharmacy Technicians and How a Pharmacy Technician Program Can Prepare You

NWSC’s pharmacy technician program will enable our students to work in all types of workplace environments. By taking the 8-month course, you will become better prepared to pass the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board exam (PTCB) and the Exam for the Certification of Pharmacy Technicians (ExCPT). You need to pass these examinations to become a working professional.

NWSC’s pharmacy technician course is also ideal since it is a PTCB-Recognized Education/Training Program. The Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB) is an organization that offers credentials to students who wish to build careers in the pharmacy technician field.

Therefore, our pharmacy technician program will prepare you to take your certification test. In addition, we will help you prepare for a pharmacy technician career, which can be a starting point for your vocational development and professional growth.


In this guide, we have discussed the critical role that pharmacy technicians play in the healthcare system. Some primary responsibilities include preparing new drug prescriptions, refilling medications, packaging and labeling medication, medication administration, processing insurance claims, tracking inventory, and repackaging bulk medications.

Several benefits are associated with this career, such as the short training time, excellent job outlook, flexible work schedule, and the potential for career advancement. 

We encourage prospective students to consider a Pharmacy Technician Program at NWSC. You can fill out a form or call the institution directly so we can answer any questions that you might have.

You can enroll anytime since we have new Pharmacy Technician Programs starting every month.

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