Being a pharmacist can be stressful. You always have a hundred and one things to do, but never enough time. Thankfully you are not alone in your endeavours thanks to the support of pharmacy technicians, particularly in hospitals, who lend a hand daily with patients and their medicines.

Over the past few years the responsibilities that pharmacy technicians undertake have advanced considerably. This role development could potentially benefit not only technicians, but pharmacists and hospital care also.

Advancement opportunities are evolving in large pharmacies and health systems pharmacy technicians with significant training or experience can be promoted to supervisory positions. Some may advance into specialty positions such as chemotherapy technician or nuclear pharmacy technician. Others may move into sales. With a substantial amount of formal training, some technicians go on to become pharmacists.

Most pharmacy technicians don’t have advanced educational degrees, but for many being a pharmacy technician is a step towards more advanced careers as pharmacist, nurse or doctor, or in the pharmaceutical industry. To become a pharmacist, for example, requires up to 6 years of formal education beyond high-school. An MBA, or even a 2-year associates degree focused on business or marketing, or advanced science training, can all be paths towards a job in the pharmaceutical industry.

Pharmaceutical representatives need knowledgeable expertise about their company’s products, and their communication skills are important because they convey their knowledge to health-care professionals, including physicians, pharmacy employees and others.

The equipment used in pharmacies can also be a focus of advanced pharmacy technicians who supervise, install, maintain and repair the equipment for pharmacies nationwide.

Motivated pharmacy technicians can advance their careers in many ways. Further education is one way. Pharmacy technicians, especially those working for larger retail companies, healthcare providers or pharmaceutical companies, have opportunities to advance into supervisory positions. It may take several years to be promoted into higher level management positions, but they do exist.

A larger hospital or long-term care facility usually has more career and salary enhancement possibilities, especially for pharmacy technicians who are trained to meet the needs of a diverse range of patients.