Pharmacy Technician jobs are in demand in America and in other countries across the world. Despite the economic downturn, healthcare industry continues to grow – employment opportunities in pharmaceutical sector, hospitals, and other areas of healthcare also noted a sharp growth.
The growth of pharmaceutical sector came with a demand for pharmacy technicians throughout the US. These individuals continue to work in their secure jobs, and earn thousands of dollars when many other professionals have to quit their jobs due to the downturn. This indeed is a positive aspect on the pharmacy tech job.
The pharmacy technician salary also impacts the rise of pharmacy sector. Due to the different job duties among different types of pharmacy techs, the salary varies. Therefore, we’d talk in details about the salary for each type of technician, the pay scale in different states, and why it is not the same in each state in the US.
Pharmacy Technician Salary
The questions we commonly hear related to pharmacy professionals are about their pay – How much do pharmacy technicians make? How much is their income, their starting salary, etc. And these questions do affect people in their decision on becoming a pharmacy technician and getting a job that’s stable in the long run.
Okay, coming to the point – a pharmacy tech makes around $18,000 to $35,000 per annum based on the experience and educational qualification. While starting salary can be between $18,000 and $24,000, it may go up as the experience increases and one receives more training and education as a pharmacy tech.
And the pay can go up further with bonus, stipends, and benefits that are offered to full-time pharmacy technicians. Plus, there are also family benefits such as health insurance, free medication, and regular health checkups.
The pay and the benefits we just talked about are also influenced by education apart from experience. Generally, high school education is enough to apply for a pharmacy technician job, but having a pharmacy technician degree and certification will surely give them higher salary.
Pay Scale for Pharmacy Technician
Pharmacy technician’s pay is determined by the factors such as the education, experience, the company policies, the state laws and regulations, and job duties and responsibilities assigned to them. Their pay rate is quite good compared to other professionals in the pharmaceutical sector in the healthcare industry.
As pharmacy technicians work under the supervision of the pharmacist, a determining factor in salary of pharmacy technicians is their roles and duties.
Their average salary, or say, pay per hour may be around $9.58/hour for a pharmacy worker with one year of experience, and up to $10.00 and $13.00/hour for technicians over four years of experience. Since, the duties and responsibilities are determined by the experience an individual holds, experience is surely interrelated to the pharmacy technician salary.
The place of employment also determines the pay scale. An average wage for people working in general and surgical hospitals is $14 per hour; whereas, pharmacy technicians working in a grocery store get paid around $12/hour. On the other hand, the wage at the drug store is at about $11 on hourly basis.
Here’s what the National Pay Data Says
The hourly rate starts from $11 and goes up to $21; the overtime rate starts from $18 and goes up to around $30. The annual bonus could total up to $4000/annum making the total annual earnings between $23,000 and $50,000.
Salary by Job Position
Certified Pharmacy Technician Salary
Pharmacy Technician Salary for certified professionals is marginally higher than those who are not certified. Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB) and Institute for Certification of Pharmacy Technicians (ICPT) are responsible bodies that certify pharmacy technicians in America.
Based on the certification from these two bodies, a pharmacy technician is referred as a certified pharmacy technician. And all the certified pharmacy technicians can find work in different pharmacies like CVS, Walgreens, Wal-Mart, Rite-Aid, Target and other related work places. Their work hours are typical 9-5 business hours.
Walgreens alone has over 7500 drugstores in US, and Rite Aid has 4800 drug stores operating in different states across America. Thousands of people work in these stores who are from diverse backgrounds. But their salary is fixed not because of their background, but because of the company policies and the state laws.
As a beginner pharmacy technician, the salary is between $18,000 and $30,000. But as the time passes, the position may change from a junior technician to a senior technician and possibly career advancement to a pharmacist. And after becoming a pharmacist, the salary can round up to $100,000 per annum or even more. But, promotion depends on the training, continuing education, the way job duties are performed, the skills, and the promotion on timely basis.
Companies that appoint pharmacy workers expect them to have great people skill – in terms of communication and customer service. Apart from that, they also expect them to perform tasks like picking orders, and filling prescriptions with care.
Nuclear Pharmacy Technician Salary
Nuclear pharmacies are small pharmacies that offer nuclear pharmacy technician jobs to the aspiring candidate. The working hours in these places are similar to other pharmacies. But, the work duties might slightly differ, which do have an impact on the salary.
The job duties of nuclear pharmacy technicians include the followings:
Preparing orders at the pharmacy.
Cleaning sterile compounding areas.
Doing billing for medicines supplied to hospitals and clinics.
However, the tasks are not limited to the above list. All the tasks combined together determine the salary for nuclear pharmacies. The salary is basically around $20,000 and can vary based on the factors which we talked about earlier.
Hospital Pharmacy Technician Salary
Hospital pharmacy technicians are the ones that are often seen in medicine dispensing area in the hospitals. They are responsible for providing the nurses with correct medicine in right quantity and on time, so that the patients get it on time. There are other duties that pharmacy workers perform at a hospital pharmacy. Some of them are written below:
The pharmacists at hospital pharmacies do perform plenty of duties which make the overall operations of a pharmacy smooth. They are often responsible for administering the in-patients and the out-patients and providing them the right medicine prescribed by the doctors.
They are responsible for the medication of the patients. Therefore, they have to be really keen while preparing drug doses such as the intravenous medical drug.
Also, the hospital pharmacy worker(s) are responsible for checking the stock supplies, contacting the suppliers and give stock supplies to different departments in the hospital.
Pharmacy techs at hospitals also have to assist the pharmacists in keeping track of the medicine inventory and checking the ordering and reordering level, so that the medicines don’t go out of stock.
Last but not the least; they keep the labels updated to ensure that the medicines are easily accessible.
According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics of 2009, the annual salary of a pharmacy technician working in a hospital is $32,710 or $15.73 per hour; whereas the hospital pharmacists earn over $106,210 per year.
Salary by State
Pharmacy Technician Salary by State
Pharmacy technician salary is influenced by the state laws in different states across the US. The figures found after ample research on the web are amusing. Some states have high salaries while others have somehow lower pays. Anyway, without wasting further time, we have listed several states with the salaries offered to the pharmacy technicians there to help you get a better idea.
- Pharmacy Technician Salary in California – California is one of the biggest states in America. It employs around 30,000 pharmacy technicians and offers an annual salary of up to $37,000.
- Pharmacy Technician Salary in Ohio – There are about 26,000 pharmacy technicians in this state who get paid more or less than $27,000. The figures may vary based on the factors we sighted earlier.
- Pharmacy Technician Salary in Illinois – The annual salary in Illinois is calculated to be $14.18 per hour and $29,500 per annum.
- Pharmacy Technician Salary in Florida – In this state, the salary of pharmacy techs may range from $27,000 and $29,000. But depending upon the position, the salary might slightly differ.
- Pharmacy Technician Salary in Texas – The annual mean wage of pharmacy tech professionals in this state touches just above $29,000.
- Pharmacy Technician Salary in West Virginia – The pharmacy workers get an annual pay of $24,000 or more.
There are many other major states such as Michigan, Georgia, Louisiana, Virginia and New York, where pharmacy techs work in great number. The salaries in these states do vary as well.
There are speculations about pharmacy worker’s salary everywhere but only the Bureau of Labor Statistics has the much more correct data. This information on this article is based on the facts we found. Your salary may change based on your experience, exposure to any pharmacy technician job, and other factors.
So now that you know how much a pharmacy technician makes, it’ll be easier for you to decide if you want to become a pharmacy technician.