Concorde Blog - Oct 15, 2019
In April 2019, the Dallas campus announced the addition of a new Pharmacy Technician training program, along with the opening of a new lab. We thought it would be a great time to check in with Program Director Tamekki Davis and Campus President Erin Henry to see how things are going so far.
Why Pharmacy Technician training
"We are very excited to offer this new program so we can meet the needs of our employers in our area by providing quality Pharmacy Technician graduates," says Henry. " The 2019-20 Targeted Occupations list, as published by the Workforce Solutions of Greater Dallas, lists Pharmacy Technician's as a targeted occupation for Dallas County."
Davis explains, "As demand for pharmaceutical prescriptions and drugs continue to rise, so does the need for qualified pharmacy technicians. There is no better time to launch this exciting program at the Dallas campus!"
Beginning in 2020, individuals wishing to become certified pharmacy technicians will have to have either 500 hours on the job experience or would have to have graduated from an accredited pharmacy technician training program in order to sit for the exam.
Davis went on to say, "Right now, students really don't how to have a formal education to take the national exam. They can study on their own and sign up to take the exam to become certified. This change came about because there is a need for qualified and highly trained technicians due to more and more responsibilities that technicians will have in the future so that pharmacist can focus more on the clinical side of pharmacy."
Our labs offer real-world experiences
We feel our lab offers real-world experiences because we not only have a simulated ante-room and clean room, where our students can train for their IV certification, but we also have a mock retail pharmacy area. The retail pharmacy area is equipped with a drop off window, pick up window, private consultation area, computers, a cash register, and counter space that is similar to what you would see in a community pharmacy setting.
We also have compounding training equipment that allows our students to learn how to prepare medications in different dosage forms and strengths.
Additional Certifications added
"So far we are doing great! The program is growing and we expect this trend to continue. We have added two additional certifications to our program." Davis said, "Our students have the opportunity to earn their IV Sterile Products Certification which is required for technicians who are interested in working in an institutional pharmacy setting. Students can also earn their Extemporaneous Compounding Certification, which is for technicians who are interested in working in specialty compounding pharmacy settings."
Both of these additional certifications have the potential to make students more marketable upon graduation. "We want to give our students as many options to become successful as we can," adds Davis.
First Cohort Success
Our first cohort of students is currently on their first extern assignment, and one of our students has the opportunity to complete their externship at Baylor Sammons Oncology Cancer Center in Dallas. Davis notes, "This position requires technicians to have the IV certification which is one of the additional certifications that we have just recently added to our program."
"Both of our first cohorts of students passed the IV Sterile and Extemporaneous Compounding test and will have those certifications in addition to the Certified Pharmacy Technician certification when they graduate," Davis says proudly.
If you have been thinking about a future in a hospital or retail pharmacy, then the new Pharmacy Technician training program could have you ready in as little as 6 months to get your diploma!
Reach out to the Dallas campus for more information.